The first two weeks of the third trimester are behind you. The next several weeks will hold different things, but in the mean time this is what you can expect.
Pregnancy Week 29: What changes are occurring with your body?
Your total pregnancy weight gain to this point should be between 19 and 25 pounds (8.6 to 11.3 kg). The top of your uterus can be felt somewhere between 3 ½ to 4 inches (8.9 to 10 cm) above your belly button. Last week we began talking about a few of the discomforts that are associated with the later part of pregnancy. Constipation results in abdominal pain or discomfort, difficult infrequent bowel movements, and the passage of hard stools.
Here are a few things that you can do to help prevent constipation from occurring or treat it if you are already experiencing it:
- Eat a high fiber diet including: fruits, vegetables, breakfast cereals, whole grain breads, prunes, and bran.
- Drink a lot of fluids: Drink 10 to 12 cups of fluids each day.
- Exercise routinely: Walking, swimming, and other moderate exercises three times a week for 20-30 minutes each can help stimulate the bowels.
- Over-the-counter remedies such as Colace or Metamucil.
- Reduce or eliminate iron supplements.
Laxative pills and mineral oils are NOT recommended for the treatment of constipation during pregnancy.*
Pregnancy Week 29: How big is your baby?
Your baby now measures over 14 ½ inches (37 cm) and weighs 2 ¾ pounds (1.25 kg).*
Pregnancy Week 29: What is happening with your baby?
Your baby is rapidly growing at this point. Obviously your baby is continuing to gain weight, and his/her head is also growing. This is due to the rapid brain development that began in week 28. Muscles and lungs are also continuing to develop and mature.
Because there is so much development and maturing going on, it is incredibly important to ensure that you are getting plenty of nutrients and rest. Make sure that you are getting adequate amounts of protein, vitamin C, folic acid, iron, and calcium. A list of recommendations can be found at Essential Nutrients and Vitamins for pregnancy. If you still have questions regarding nutrition and appropriate amounts of vitamins and nutrients, contact your health care provider.*
Pregnancy Week 29: What should you plan for this week?
Some women may receive what they interpret as “strange requests” from their health care providers. These requests could be as small as avoiding specific activities or could be as serious as being told to go on complete bed rest. If you don’t understand or are confused, ask your care provider to clarify what he/she wants. Ask what outcome can occur if you follow the advice or what could occur if you choose not to. Be informed on what all of the options are.
Pregnancy Week 29: Tips for making your pregnancy better
A doula is a professional trained in childbirth who provides emotional, physical, and informational support to the woman who is expecting, in labor, or has recently given birth. The goal of a doula is to help the mother have a positive and safe birth experience, whether the mother wants an un-medicated birth or is having a planned cesarean birth.
During delivery, a doula is in constant close proximity to the mother. She can provide comfort through pain relief techniques, such as breathing, relaxing, massage, and laboring positions. Doulas also encourage participation from the partner and offer reassurance. The role of the doula is never to take the place of the father or partner in labor, but to compliment and enhance the couple’s experience.
Pregnancy Week : Tips for mom’s partner
As your partner is making plans on how to handle her labor and who to have present during the delivery, now would be the time for you two to discuss what type of role you want to have during the birth. As the partner, you can be the sole support person, or you may be interested in hiring a doula to help both of you during the laboring process.
Some things to think about are:
- Are you squeamish?
- Do you want to be the mom’s main support person?
- Are you committed to going to childbirth class and learning all you need to know to provide good support?
A laboring mom needs to know in advance what the plan is for labor and what she can expect of you. Discussing this now gives you time to work it out, make arrangements if needed, and ensure that you and mom feel prepared for the birth.