Congratulations on completing the second trimester! You are now in your last and the third trimester. This time, you would have a lot of sleepless nights. At week 28 of pregnancy, If you find yourself up in the middle of the night, try to relax, read a book or listen to something soothing. Just 12 weeks more to meet your newborn child. Your baby can not blink and open its eyes and even have rapid eye movements.
What does week 28 of pregnancy look like?
You are almost ⅔ rd way to finish your pregnancy as you start the third trimester. As your progress towards the delivery date, the complications and symptoms tend to increase, leaving behind the “comfortable days” of pregnancy. The baby kicking and moving is keeping you up at night.
At week 28 of pregnancy, Your belly will grow continuously. By now the baby has shifted to the place of delivery in the pelvic area. The closer you get to the delivery date, the more frequent are the doctor’s visits.
Fetal development at week 28 of pregnancy
Inside the 28-weeks pregnant belly, the baby is developing more fat, making their once wrinkly skin more smooth. The baby’s lungs are now mature to ensure survival.
At week 28 of pregnancy, The baby now weighs around 2 ½ pounds and the length being around 14 ¼ inches, approximately about the size of an eggplant.
- The eyelids are partly open, which are now having eyelashes.
- The umbilical cord has finally reached its peak length around 22 to 24 inches.
- The number of tissues is increasing in the brain, developing deep ridges and indentations
- The baby begins to experience REM ( rapid eye movement) sleep. Probably the baby is still dreaming.
- The fetus sticks its tongue out during this time. It is probably because the baby is tasting the amniotic acid.
What are the symptoms for week 28 of pregnancy?
Bloating and gas
At week 28 of pregnancy, As the uterus is expanding and occupying more space in the abdomen, it adds extra pressure on your rectum. Pregnancy hormones relax intestinal muscles and the pressure over the veins can make you feel gassy. Make sure you have small six meals a day with plenty of fluids.
Symphysis pubis dysfunction
This symptom occurs when the ligaments in the pelvic joint are too relaxed or stretchy as a result of an increase in hormone relaxin in the body. The pelvic joints become unstable and you might have to wear a pelvic support belt.
Pregnancy can cause hyperpigmentation of the skin in different parts of the skin, especially if you have a darker complexion. Sunlight can cause hyperpigmentation. This symptom goes off after giving birth.
This pain feels different from that of late pregnancy back pain as it travels down towards the leg, knee, foot, and toes. Severe pain can be felt in the pelvic area as well.
The pain and the discomfort is the most common problem in this week and can be quite crippling.
- Lay down on the opposite side where you feel discomfort most often
- Warm compresses or shower
- Getting physical therapy and practicing stretching exercises, especially for the pelvic area.
- Taking breaks over an extended period.
- Prenatal massage therapy
It is the most beautiful time in your life, as you feel the baby moving inside you, waiting to move out. But you may feel anxious and worried during this time.
Enjoy this time as the delivery is about 3 months away. Prepare yourself with a list of pediatricians and join birth classes. Check with the delivery hospital or your doctor’s office for information and clarifying doubts and queries.
Special considerations and complications
Gone are the “comfortable days” of pregnancy. At 28 weeks of pregnancy, you are entering the third trimester and inching towards the labor day. You will experience swollen legs and getting tired all over again and the back pain wouldn’t reduce anytime soon.
There is increased pressure on a nerve that passes from your hip to your leg. Prolonged sitting makes the condition worse. Try and avoid it and practise stretching exercises to alleviate the pain.
Visit the doctor
At week 28 of pregnancy, you will start to have frequent hospital visits and seeing your healthcare provider at least twice a month.
- Find out your rhesus status. If you are Rh-negative and your baby is Rh-positive, you would need a vaccine for immunity called Anti-D, to prevent the development of antibodies. These antibodies consider your baby as the antigen and attacks him/her, and causes various complications and even death in certain cases.
- Get a Tdap vaccine during the third trimester and ask your doctor about it, this will protect your baby from Tetanus, Diptheria and Pertussis infection. Even if you are not willing to take the rest, having a tetanus injection is a must during pregnancy.
Because you’d be seeing your doctor regularly, you should have a good understanding of how the pregnancy progresses. If you observe a sudden and abrupt change in the symptom or any kind of severity in the condition, you should seek consultation from your healthcare provider as early as possible. Keeping your doctor updated on your symptoms would help you and your doctor to make decisions in advance and will help to navigate any problem in a better way.
Important checklist for week 28 pregnancy
- Schedule your prenatal visit
- Seek consultation if you notice unusual symptoms
- Count the fetal kicks and maintain the pregnancy journal
- Prepare yourself for the labor day well in advance
- Continue taking prenatal vitamins
The reality of pregnancy has just started kicking in right now. It is just the start as you experience more complications and symptoms in your pregnancy. The high energy and subsided symptoms are the things of the past now. You may start to feel the movements get aggressive and rapid around this week.
- Healthline.com:Pregnancy: Signs, Symptoms, Overview, & Health Tips You Should Know
- Medicineplus.gov: Pregnancy | Pregnant | Prenatal Care | MedlinePlus
- Womenshealth.gov: Stages of pregnancy