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Welcome to Week 28

You are now beginning the seventh month of your pregnancy. Just two more months to go! Here’s what you can expect this week.

Update on Your Body

Your uterus is now 3.5 inches or more above your navel. You are likely to have gained about 7-12 kilos by now and your pregnancy symptoms may have amplified with the onset of your third trimester. You may have developed haemorrhoids or piles, and your previous symptoms of leg cramps, constipation and insomnia may still exist. You may find yourself urinating more frequently in the coming weeks as your uterus continues to enlarge. Braxton Hicks contractions are likely to appear now or in the weeks to come.

Update on Your Baby

Your baby has begun experiencing Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep cycles. In other words, he or she has begun to dream. Your baby’s brain surface, which was smooth up until now, will begin to form grooves and indentations this week, and develop brain tissue. The hair on the scalp is growing longer, and his or her eyebrows and eyelashes are now visible. Your baby has begun to gain some weight by storing fat under the skin, which makes him or her appear rounder. This process of fat storage will continue until your baby is born.

Your Baby’s Size

14.8 inches, or the size of an aubergine.

Tips for an Expectant Mom

Dos

If you experience pregnancy-induced piles, take heart in knowing this is common. Speak to your doctor about your condition to check for suitable treatments. Drink plenty of water and eat fibre-rich foods to prevent constipation, practise Kegel exercises regularly to strengthen your pelvic muscles and avoid straining while passing motion. Exercise regularly, sleep on your left side and keep your rectal area clean. In case of pain, apply ice or a doctor-approved ointment.Acquaint yourself with the signs of premature labour, just in case your baby decides to arrive early. If you experience abdominal cramping, leaking of amniotic fluid, or pass a thick gelatinous blood-stained mucus plug, inform your doctor immediately. Take heart in knowing that premature labour can be stalled with bed rest, medication and hospitalisation.Make sure your chosen hospital has a Level III neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Such a unit can support babies as premature as 24 gestational weeks – golden, if your baby decides to arrive early.

Tips for an Expectant Dad

Dos

Be available on the phone from this week onward, or make alternative arrangements for your partner to reach you when in a meeting. Inform family and friends that are on your list of essential contacts to be at hand for the arrival of your baby, whether premature or on time.

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