Pregnancy Calendar Week 28 – Increase In Leg And Back Pain

Pregnancy Calendar Week 28 – Increase In Leg And Back Pain

Congratulations on completing the second trimester. That was a wonderful feat. In just about 12 weeks or so, you will be holding your baby in your hands. As you have entered the third trimester, be prepared for a lot of exciting things. Let’s begin with the first week of this phase.

Week 28

Welcome to the third and final trimester of your pregnancy. While not all experts agree on when each trimester begins, this one is also not immune to difference of opinions. As per American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, week 28th is considered the beginning of the third trimester.

The closer you are getting to your due date, the more frequently you will meet your doctor. Starting this week, your gynecologist might suggest you to visit for checkup every other week.

Your body this week

Pregnant belly and bodyweight

Your bump continues to grow with the growth of your baby. This week the fundal height (the distance from the pubic bone to the top of the uterus) is about 26-30 centimeters. The ever growing baby is putting a lot of pressure on the uterus. It also impacts the sciatic nerve which is the largest nerve in a human body. This may cause a condition known as sciatica. In this condition, the pain radiates from your back down to the leg, knee, foot and toes, causing tingling sensation.

By this time, your baby has also started shifting into the position and place of delivery. That means their head will be near your cervix. However, some babies might not shift until they are 30 weeks old while some may remain adamant and never come to the actual position like breech babies. You must have added about 10 kgs of weight to your overall bodyweight. This indicates how fairly you are paying attention to your health.

Typical symptoms

Starting this week you have embarked upon the 7th month of your pregnancy. While your baby is prepping to come out in this world, its eagerness and the hormonal changes you are up with are still creating troubles for you. Your breasts might have already started producing colostrum, the yellowish milky substance which is the first food for your baby. This week the colostrum might started leaking.

The side effects which are continuing from past weeks include:

Complications at 28th week of pregnancy

If in your earlier pregnancy your doctor ordered blood test to check for Rh factor, an antigen protein present in most people’s blood cells. If you are one of those who don’t have this protein and your baby has, it would create blood incompatibility. This can lead to anemia and jaundice and in extreme cases it may also lead to brain damage.

So during 24-28 weeks your doctor will suggest you to go through this test once again in order to avoid complications during pregnancy and delivery.

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Your baby this week

Your little one is hard working and steadily packing fat beneath the skin. He or she is currently undergoing following bodily changes:

Eyes and ear development

This week the eyelids of the baby are partially opening and may also have eyelashes. This means the baby can now blink eyes as well as enjoy fluttering newly developed lashes. At the same time, the ear nerves have matured and baby can now hear your lullabies.

Brain development

The grooves and folds of the brain of your baby are steadily developing and the amount of tissues is increasing. This results in increased brain activity which makes him or her move body parts, dream as well as control body temperature.

Bones development

One of the biggest changes starting this week will be the development of bones from cartilage. So, calcium-rich diet should be a must in the dietary chart.

Size, weight and appearance

The development of the baby is right on the track and currently from crown to rump it measures around 14.8 inches or the size of a small pumpkin (kaddu). As far as the weight is concerned, it should be around 1 kg.

Healthy eating

The third trimester is also the fastest growth period of the baby. So, obviously you need healthy nutritious food to fuel his or her growth during this period. Make sure this week you include:

  1. Doctors usually recommends eating fish during the third trimester, so you must include at least 2 servings in a week
  2. The bones develops rapidly during this phase so make sure you include a lot of dairy products in your daily diet
  3. Eat 6 small meals a day instead of three large ones
  4. Protein is one of the main building blocks of your baby’s body. Don’t forget to add rich protein foods including lean meat, chicken and soybean into your diet

Expecting dads

If you haven’t started making plans for taking paternity leaves, then this could be the right time to do this. You should take at least 2 weeks of leave to take better care of your partner. Make sure you familiarize with the policy of your workplace for paternity leaves and inform them that you will be disappearing for a while.

You can also help her decide whether to breastfeed, formula or both. Breastfeeding is the best option as far as health of the women and baby is concerned. So if she is not willing, try to encourage her.

Screening

Week 28th is generally the first prenatal visit of the third trimester for most women. And starting from this week, you will meet your doctor every two weeks so that your baby’s health is strongly monitored. If you are not Rh negative, the doctor will not test you for that, otherwise you will get first Rh immune globulin shot this week and again 3 days after the delivery.

You won’t be suggested ultrasound at this stage unless your pregnancy is complicated. You will go through usual abdomen check and also to determine the birthing position of the baby.

Tips of the week

You are steadily approaching towards your goal. You need to keep patience and follow important do’s and don’ts throughout the rest of the remaining phase.

  1. Keep regular check on fetal kick count
  2. Make sure you take a lot of sleep
  3. Move around for getting relief from back pain
  4. Avoid sitting in hot bath tub
  5. Continue taking prenatal vitamin supplements

FAQs at 28th week of pregnancy

Can I buy maternity belt and compression socks?

The rapidly expanding belly can create uneasiness in the abdominal area, putting pressure on the backbone. Maternity belt can help you get relief from hip and pelvic pain. On the other hand, maternity compression socks ease leg muscle pain.

What is the remedy for sciatic nerve pain?

If you suspect sciatica, then you must call your doctor and seek support. He can suggest you some measures such as avoiding heavy lifting, lying on the side of the body, taking warm showers and may also suggest you massage therapy or stretching exercises.

Sources

1. Merck Manual Consumer Version. Rh Incompatibility. read more
2. The Nemours Foundation. Kidshealth.org. Pregnancy Calendar, Week 28 read more
3. National Women's Health Resource Center. Healthywomen.org. Pregnancy & Parenting Second Trimester of Pregnancy: 28 Weeks 
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