Your Baby This Week
It's official! You're in the last trimester of your pregnancy and you're edging closer to the big day with each passing week. Your baby is growing--and wow--so are you!
Your little angel is still little, between 2 and 2.5 pounds (0.9 to 1.1 kg) and 15 to 16 inches (38 to 40 cm) long. Your baby is actually a little "chubbier" than before. That's because the number of fat cells she has is increasing, filling out the skin from underneath. Eyebrows and eyelashes are also growing, and the hair on her head is getting longer. This is also an important time for your baby's brain development.
Your Body This Week
Your weight is climbing, too! During this month, you may begin to experience Braxton Hicks contractions--a kind of "dress rehearsal" for labor that isn't dangerous for you or baby. They occur when the uterus hardens and relaxes. Because your growing baby is putting more pressure on your pelvis, your ankles and feet may swell, your legs may cramp, and as your growing uterus bears down on your bladder, you may once again feel the need to urinate more often. And don't be alarmed if you start to feel out of breath; it's just baby pushing on your diaphragm.
Loading Up On Protein
Bring on the grilled cheese! Sure, two eggs sound great! Another bean burrito, please! Protein is especially crucial to your baby's development in your third trimester, so it's important that you continue to take in 3-4 servings a day. Protein builds strong muscles and rich blood and, as long as you stay away from the high fat and processed meats, you should be able to stay away from excess calories. Protein is found in more foods than you may realize. Make the protein connection.
Your third trimester is when your body needs the most rest. Ironically, you might not be sleeping very well at this time. Between leg cramps, heartburn, and more trips to the bathroom, it seems like your body is trying to prepare you for the sleep deprivation after the baby comes! To get more and better sleep at night:
- Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day.
- Have a glass of milk before you go to bed at night.
- Avoid spicy foods within 3 hours of bedtime.
- Get a little bit of exercise or fresh air sometime in the late afternoon or evening.
Read more about how to slip into a steady slumber.