Your Pregnancy: Month 7
Your baby is starting to look and act like a newborn – he’s sucking his thumb, rolling and kicking those legs, and hiccuping like a pro!
When you hit 28 weeks, you’ll be in your third trimester of pregnancy! Here’s everything you need to know about the seventh month of pregnancy, including:
- What to expect during weeks 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30 of pregnancy
- Common symptoms during the seventh month of pregnancy
- Emotions during month seven of pregnancy
- To-do list in the seventh month of pregnancy
- Self-care during month seven of pregnancy
- Your partner during the seventh month of pregnancy
Pregnancy weeks 26 and 27
Your baby is the size of: an eggplant
Your baby’s hearing is so well-developed that it reacts to sounds and its pulse increases. Its eyes are also opening and starting to see! Your baby is beginning to develop patterns – of brain waves, sleeping and waking – which are preparing it for life in the outside world. You should be feeling a lot of movement now.
By week 27, your baby measures nearly 14 inches and weighs just over two pounds. He or she might start to recognize your voice at this stage. If you feel rhythmic spasms in your belly, don’t worry – your baby probably has the hiccups! Some babies start sucking their thumbs at this stage to soothe themselves.
Pregnancy weeks 28 and 29
Your baby is the size of: a cauliflower
You’ve reached the third trimester – congratulations, you’re in the home stretch! Your baby is getting ready for life outside the womb by developing more brain tissue, growing more hair, storing more fat, dreaming, blinking and breathing. You might notice your symptoms are changing again, with leg cramps, swelling, insomnia and constipation now plaguing you.
At 29 weeks, your baby has almost reached full length but still needs to add energy-producing white fat to its frame. The brain, muscles and lungs are continuing to mature.
Pregnancy week 30
Your baby is the size of: a small cabbage
Why the extra week? Each calendar month contains more than four seven-day weeks. To make up for that discrepancy, months six, seven and nine have an extra week.
Your baby now weighs three pounds. With all that extra fat, your little cabbage is starting to control its own body temperature and the fuzzy lanugo is beginning to fall off. The hair on its head is getting thicker and the fingernails are growing. And the body and head are finally in proportion – your baby is really starting to look like a newborn!
Common symptoms during the seventh month of pregnancy
This month, you might experience:
- Heartburn and indigestion
- Bloating and gas
- Faintness and dizziness
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Restless leg syndrome
- Varicose veins
- Stretch marks
- Leg cramps
- Round ligament pain
- Sciatica (pain or tingling in the legs)
- Increased vaginal discharge
- Blurred vision
- Bleeding gums
- Mask of pregnancy or chloasma (skin discoloration on the face)
- Braxton Hicks contractions
Emotions during the seventh month of pregnancy
You’re probably starting to get excited about meeting your baby. You might be toying with baby names and buying a few too many cute items of clothing. If you don’t feel enthusiastic, that’s OK too. Some moms don’t feel connected to their babies until they’re born.
But if you’re feeling consistently sad or worried about the future, you should talk to your doctor without delay. Prenatal depression and anxiety are more common than we think and help is available.
What to do during the seventh month of pregnancy
Here are a few tasks to get done and helpful tips for this month:
- Your healthcare provider will probably want to see you more often – about every two weeks – during the second trimester. Attend all your check-ups and bring up any concerns you might have.
- Between weeks 27 and 36, get a Tdap vaccine to protect your baby against whooping cough in early life.
- If you’re Rh negative and your baby is Rh positive, you’ll need an injection of Rh immune globulin around week 28 to prevent your immune system from making antibodies against your baby’s blood if you’re exposed to it during childbirth.
- Start performing daily kick counts around week 28. Sit or lie down and count all your baby’s movements over the course of an hour. If you don’t feel at least 10 in that time, have a snack and try again. If it takes two hours or more to count 10 movements, consult your doctor.
- Keep exercising regularly, but make sure your workouts are low-impact and you can talk during your workouts. If you’re too puffed to talk, you should slow down.
- Don’t forget to do your Kegels to prevent postpartum conditions such as urinary incontinence and uterine prolapse. Tighten your pelvic floor muscles for three to five seconds, then relax for three to five seconds. Aim for three sets of 20 per day.
- If you’ve put on more or less than the healthy range of 16 to 22 pounds by 26 weeks, talk to your doctor about what you should do to get back on track.
- Retaining more water than a camel? It might sound counterintuitive, but drink plenty of water to flush all that fluid out of your system and get as much sleep as you can.
- Your skin is prone to all sorts of issues in the second trimester, including sunburn and eczema. Protect it with natural sunscreen and eczema balm.
- Eat iron-rich foods such as beef, chicken, beans and spinach to ensure your baby is getting enough iron and to avoid restless leg syndrome (a common third-trimester ailment).
- Start buying all the essential baby products you’ll need for the first few months of your child’s life. The most important purchase you’ll make is a car seat because it has the potential to save your child’s life and you can’t bring your baby home form the hospital without it! Read our guide to choosing the right car seat before making a decision.
Self-care during the seventh month of pregnancy
Fatigue usually returns sometime during the third trimester, so try to tick some important items off your to-do list before it sets in. But don’t overdo it! You should take frequent breaks during the day and know when to say “no” to too many commitments. It’s OK to skip happy hour and binge on Netflix in your pajamas instead. It’s more than OK – it’s brilliant.
Your partner during the seventh month of pregnancy
As you plan the nursery décor, make lists of baby names and decide whether to breastfeed or bottle feed, don’t forget to ask for your partner’s opinion. If you make too many decisions on your own, you might find that your partner feels left out or hurt. You’re in this together, so involve your better half in the preparations.