In this month, your baby will gain about 1 lb 2 oz and measure around 13.75 to 15 inches.
The baby will then gain around 4 lb 7 oz between now and birth.
The fetus’s face is fully formed, although the cheeks are not full yet. The eyes are opening and closing, and protrude slightly. At the beginning of the last trimester, the uterus is still relatively roomy for the baby, but it will gradually become more narrow. The fetus then positions its head at the bottom to have more space. (Some do it later, or remain in a “breech” position.)
Your baby is still slim and has little subcutaneous fat, the skin is thin and red. It will only start looking pinkish in the last month of pregnancy. The respiratory system begins playing a more prominent role. Your baby may get the hiccups, which can give you rhythmic abdominal contractions. You will start feeling kicks against the uterine wall, a precursor of walking. Your fetus is now wriggling around and making movements. If the thumb gets near its mouth, this will trigger the sucking reflex.
Vision is the last sense to develop. Around seven months, the eyelids open. If your belly gets near a dim light, the fetus will be attracted to it. But the first time the fetus’s face is exposed to bright light, it will begin to move, become bothered, and may even put its hands in front of its eyes and mouth.
Since it receives little stimulation in the darkness, the baby’s vision is not fully developed, even at birth. It must be quite unpleasant for newborns to come into a super-bright delivery room. That’s why it is increasingly common to welcome babies into a dimly lit space or near-darkness for premature babies.
Your baby is gradually gaining weight as it grows in the last weeks of pregnancy. Starting in the 28th week of pregnancy, a waxy layer begins to form on its skin. Its senses are also more alert, and the cerebral cortex has grown considerably. In the coming weeks, the nervous system will be as developed as a newborn’s. Recent research shows that as early as the 28th week of pregnancy, the fetus is aware of its surroundings. In one or two more weeks, it will be able to register it in its memory.
In the 28th week of pregnancy, your baby starts to get used to your voice. It recognizes and even responds to it, like when it hears music. Studies confirm that the fetus can also recognize a melody that has been heard several times, and even follow along with the rhythm. This proves that long-term memory is at work even before birth.
You should keep in mind that songs can affect the fetus’s mood. Fast rhythms are agitating while soft music is relaxing.
- Your changes: You are entering your last trimester. From now on, hormonal changes may vary by the week. You have frequent bouts of insomnia, your body is heavier, and lying down is not always very comfortable. Try sleeping on your left side to avoid putting pressure on the vena cava (the main vein carrying blood back to the heart). It may help to put a little cushion between your legs to straighten your back and find relief. If you’re not sleeping well at night, try taking short naps. Prepare for the delivery by going to childbirth preparation classes with your partner, if possible. Fathers often feel neglected and have a harder time becoming a dad if they’re left out of the pregnancy experience. But they are very valuable for moms-to-be because they provide comfort by massaging them and giving moral support during childbirth.
- If you are going to return to work after the baby is born, remember to arrange for future childcare.
- Fifth prenatal exam
- First of seven birth and parenthood planning sessions: Start scheduling these classes. They are fully covered by insurance.