Changes in your body
You need only look down at your beautiful belly to know that you’re well on your way to baby snuggles and newborn coos. By this point, you’re probably more than ready to meet your baby and return to your pre-pregnancy body. But remember, these final weeks are an important time for your baby’s growth, development, and postnatal health.
You may be feeling extra tired these days. Finding a comfortable sleeping position is getting more difficult, and waking up to use the restroom can also affect your sleep. Try to go to sleep earlier than usual, and if you can, sleep in a little later in the morning. Napping may also help to improve your energy.
At 30 weeks your baby has likely hit another weight milestone: 3 pounds! While your growing belly might make you feel like you’re growing a linebacker, your baby is only 15 to 16 inches long at this point.
Your baby’s eyes are starting to distinguish what’s around him or her this week, though your baby will continue to spend a good amount of time with closed eyes. Once your baby joins the world, they will have 20/400 vision (compared to 20/20). This means that babies can only focus on objects right near their face, so get ready to snuggle up close.
Your babies have grown to 10 1/2 inches from crown to rump this week. They weigh 3 pounds each. Week 30 is when the growth of twins starts lagging behind the growth of their singleton counterparts.
By week 30 of your pregnancy, you may experience the following symptoms:
- fatigue or trouble sleeping
- back pain
- changes in the size or structure of your feet
- mood swings
Back pain is a common ailment during pregnancy and typically worsens in the third trimester with your additional weight gain. With about 10 weeks left in your pregnancy, you’ll be happy to know there are a number of things that can help.
First, check in with your doctor to make sure you’re gaining an appropriate amount of weight. Gaining too much weight doesn’t just add more risks to your pregnancy, it can increase your back pain as well. On the other hand, gaining too little can be a problem.
Next, focus on your posture. If you find it difficult to stand or sit up straight with your belly weighing on you, you might want to look into a pregnancy support belt. If you work at a desk, make sure your chair, keyboard, and computer monitor have been set up to create an ergonomic environment.
Elevating your feet can also ease up on any back issues. If you’re still sporting your pre-pregnancy high heels, consider switching to flat shoes that offer support. Supportive footwear can help ease back pain. Don’t worry, though. Your cute footwear will still be waiting for you after your baby arrives.
Remind yourself that it will all be worth it in the end, and if the pain is bothering you, speak with your doctor about possible remedies, or ask your partner for a massage. A massage is also a great way to connect with your partner.
You’re not imagining things if you think your feet are changing. Some women go up a full shoe size during their pregnancy.
If walking around in soft, forgiving supportive slippers from 9 to 5 isn’t possible, this may be the time to invest in a new pair of shoes that will fit comfortably for the remainder of your pregnancy.
If your second trimester gave you a bit of relief from emotional ups and downs, it’s perfectly normal to start experiencing more mood swings in your third trimester. You’ve got a lot on your mind, and that coupled with your increased exhaustion can put your nerves on edge.
If the anxieties of pregnancy or upcoming motherhood are keeping you up most nights or interfering with your daily activities or relationships, you should check in with your doctor. It’s not uncommon for women to experience depression during or following pregnancy. Your doctor can help you manage it.
You may be nearing the finish line, but there are still things you can do to help keep you and your baby safe, healthy, and happy.
Buy a pregnancy pillow
If you’re having trouble sleeping, you may want to purchase a pregnancy pillow. While a pregnancy pillow won’t fix all of the reasons you may be experiencing pregnancy-induced insomnia, it can help get you in a comfortable position. This may make it easier to fall and stay asleep.
Make a birthing plan
Not every woman puts together a birthing plan and, just like with any event, the exact details of your birthing plan may not play out exactly how you anticipated. Making a birthing plan, though, is a great way to discuss important aspects of your labor before you’re in the thick of it. What pain management do you want to focus on? Who do you want in the labor room with you? Do you want your baby to stay with you post-delivery? Are you open to epidural anesthesia? These are all great things to discuss with your partner and your doctor ahead of time so that everyone is on the same page.
Be flexible with any plans. Children have a way of throwing plans out the window, and this can happen as soon as their first day of life. The best way to ensure smooth sailing come labor and beyond is to have healthy, trusting relationships with your doctor and your support system so you can lean on them when things veer away from the expected. No matter the specifics, a happy and healthy baby and mother are what everyone’s shooting for. Focusing on what happens instead of what you wished would have happened will ensure that you can be the best advocate for yourself and your baby.
Set up your nursery and car seat
While many hand-me-down things are nice and help the budget, you should buy a new crib to ensure it’s built under the latest safety guidelines. Setting up your nursery (or crib if your baby will be staying in your bedroom) and car seat may seem a little premature. But remember, your baby will probably not arrive on its expected due date. Even if you have a planned cesarean delivery, you may go into labor before that date.
Making sure you have a safe way to bring baby home and a safe spot for your baby to sleep once you get home will remove one or two of the many worries that are probably going through your head. It never hurts to be prepared.
Be on the alert for uterine contractions. While you still have 10 weeks to go, sometimes the baby will decide to come early. If you start feeling contraction pains and they’re growing more frequent, chances are they’re real contractions instead of Braxton-Hicks contractions. If you aren’t sure if you’re in labor, it’s always better to play it safe and call your doctor. Of course, vaginal bleeding or fluid leakage are other reasons to call the doctor.
Also check in with your doctor if you’re experiencing severe sadness or anxiety. Your doctor can help you safely manage and treat your depression or anxiety.