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The 27th week of pregnancy marks the end of the 2nd trimester. The baby’s head is now as big as a head of lettuce. The good news is that if you went into premature labour at this time, the baby would have a good chance of survival (85%), although there may be some medical assistance required after birth.
Your Baby’s Growth During Pregnancy – Week 27
There are quite a few developments in the baby by the 27th week of pregnancy like:
- The baby will be opening her eyes and their eye lashes would have formed.
- The baby will start practising breathing movements even though they are still in the amniotic sac.
- Babies have about 15% fat on their body at this stage, which will grow to 30% by the time they are born.
- The baby’s heartbeat would have become strong by now and can be heard through the baby bump.
Each of the baby’s movements during this phase lasts for a few seconds and it is essential for you to relax and enjoy each of it.
What is the Baby’s Size
The baby’s size at 27 weeks is about 36 cms, and he/she weighs 875 gms. The baby is able to distinguish between night and day and the brain is also at the final stage of development.
During this time you will notice that the baby is developing its own sleeping patterns. This is a normal thing and doctors suggest that your resting schedule should coincide with your baby’s as much as possible.
Common Body Changes
The body changes during the third trimester of pregnancy are aimed at preparing for labour and delivery.
- Breathlessness: As the uterus grows it puts pressure on your upper chest due to which you may have breathing problems (shortness of breath)
- Oedema: During this time, apart from your belly size increasing you will experience swelling in the ankle, feet and hands. This condition is known as oedema and is caused due to fluid retention in the body. Fluid retention is caused due to the increased blood flow and uterine pressure. In case of excessive swelling you should consult your doctor as this may be due to a condition called preeclampsia. To get relief from swelling you should avoid standing or sitting for long durations. You may try to do some appropriate exercise like yoga or swimming. This condition is temporary in nature and will go away completely once the baby is born.
- Itchiness: Your skin maybe stretching to its limit, causing it to itch.
- Dry Skin: You should avoid showering in hot water because it may dry your skin.
- Exhaustion: You may feel tired all the time. However, once you try to sleep you may find it difficult. Hence you should involve yourself in activities that make you sleepy.
Symptoms of Pregnancy at Week 27
By the 27th week, your baby would have become large enough for you to feel her movements. Some of the common symptoms that women feel during the 27th week of pregnancy are:
- Exhaustion – You may feel mental and physical fatigue because of the changes happening in your body.
- Pelvic pressure and pain in the lower back – You may experience cramping in the abdomen due to the increased weight of the uterus.
- Vaginal discharge – There may in increase or change in the vaginal discharge which may be watery or bloody.
- Severe abdominal pain and tenderness – The growing belly may feel sore and tender sometimes.
- Pain or burning during urination – Lack of enough water may cause pain or burning during urination
- Braxton Hicks contractions – Also called false labour, these contractions prepare the muscles of the abdomen for labour.
- Blurry vision and headache.
- Swelling or puffiness in the face, ankles, feet and gain in weight – These are symptoms of Oedema, a condition where the body retains water.
- Dizziness along with an increase in the heartbeat – As the blood volume increases, the heart is working harder to pump it, and this may lead to rapid heartbeat and dizziness.
- Breathing problem with coughing of blood – The strain on the lung due to decreasing space and increased need for oxygen may cause breathing problems.
- Severe constipation with diarrhoea – As the space available for the digestive organs decreases so does the efficiency of the digestive system.
- Itching in the body – This is caused by stretching of the skin.
- Cramping in the legs – The increased weight of the uterus impedes blood-flow leading to cramps.
Belly at 27 Weeks of Pregnancy
It is healthy to gain around 6 to 12 kilograms during this time. In case you have gained more weight too quickly, then it is advisable that you slow down a little. You should be aware that the calorie requirement during this time is only 300-500 per day.
Since the baby has grown quite a bit you could be experiencing the kicks and hiccups in the 27th week of pregnancy.
27th Week Ultrasound
If your pregnancy is uncomplicated till now then you will not need to go for a prenatal appointment or ultrasound during the 27th week.
Your baby would have started to breathe and her brain will also be active now.
What to Eat
You should continue to maintain a healthy diet to ensure that you and the baby get adequate nutrition. Here is a quick look at 27th week pregnancy foods which are good for you:
- You should drink at least 12 glasses of fluid in a day. This will prevent urinary tract infections, and relieve constipation which is common during pregnancy.
- Dairy products, green leafy vegetables, pulses, sesame seeds, almonds, walnuts and figs are high sources of calcium and protein. Calcium and protein are helpful in developing the baby’s bones and teeth.
Tips & Care
Here are few tips which are sure to help you take good care of yourself in this period
- Staying healthy – You should maintain good health during pregnancy, the key to which is simply ensuring a nutrient-rich diet.
- Manage your diet – Eat healthy to ensure the growth and development of the baby.
- Hygiene – Maintaining personal hygiene by keeping the surroundings clean and developing good hygiene are extremely important in order to prevent infections.
- Exercise –You should do exercises that are suitable for this phase of pregnancy. This helps you maintain weight and confidence, and reduce any discomfort that you may experience in pregnancy (like constipation, backache). Exercising makes the childbirth process smoother too! However, you should always consult your doctor and exercise under a certified trainer.
- Destress – You should stay away from stress and anxiety as it may have an adverse physical impact on you.
- Avoid excess sugar and salt – Consuming too much sugar and salt may lead to gestational diabetes.
- Cut down on caffeine – Caffeine tends to dehydrate your body hence you should avoid consuming it and shift to healthier options like green tea which are antioxidants.
- Rush – It is advisable to slow down as you tackle your daily tasks. Your increasing weight and the growing baby may make you unstable, increasing your chances of falls or injuries.
What You Need to Shop for
Since you are almost at the last phase of your pregnancy you should start planning to shop for things you may require:
- Start shopping for accessories for the baby nursery and for baby furniture.
- Start shopping for things you will require at the hospital and at home like nursing bras, nightwear, baby clothes, a car seat, diapers and wipes.
Although this is one of the least important things right now, you may want to think about postpartum birth control. This might be a decision you want to take before the baby is born.
The 27th week is a great milestone for you and the baby as it is the beginning of the final phase. There is a sense of excitement and happiness for the parents and grandparents as the due date approaches. Revel in the promise of joy that childbirth brings and equip yourself well enough to handle the temporary discomforts on the way.
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