Your Pregnancy at Week 27

by Your Baby Club

Your baby is the size of a cauliflower!

Week 27

your baby this week:

Your little one continues to grow and develop inside of you. Their eyelids, which have remained closed until this point, will open and their retinas will begin to form. The retina has specialized photoreceptor cells, called rods and cones, which respond to light and perceive color.

Your baby in utero still has slightly wrinkled skin; but by 27 weeks, he or she basically looks how she or he will look at birth... in just a few months!

your body:

Congratulations! You are officially at the end of your second trimester.

Muscle cramps in your legs may become more and more common as your pregnancy progresses. This isn't just caused by the extra weight your body is carrying around; alas, your slowed circulation and compressed nerves are adding to this particular problem too. Stretching your legs, calves, ankles, and feet, or asking your partner for a massage are two great ways to deal with these annoying leg cramps!

Did you know... the average woman needs 15mg of iron a day. But the average pregnant woman needs twice that amount, about 30 mg, per day. Iron is essential in the production of hemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells, which carry oxygen to other cells. While you're pregnant, your body holds about 50 percent more blood volume than it normally does. Ergo, your body needs more iron to produce more hemoglobin. You also need extra iron for your baby and the placenta. You can always ask your midwife or doctor for a complete list of foods rich in iron, but some high-iron foods include red meat, eggs, peas, dried fruit, poultry, dark leafy greens, and legumes. Liver can be a good source of iron, but it contains unsafe levels of vitamin A. You should avoid liver until after labor and delivery.

It may be hard to get enough iron from your diet alone. If you are worried about your iron levels and aren't able to fit more into your daily diet, ask your midwife or doctor about an iron supplement, if one is right for you.

Are you feeling overly stressed? If you are unable to manage this, you may need to talk with a professional and learn healthy ways to manage your stress (an any out-of-control anxiety you might feel, as well). Various studies throughout the years have shown that pregnancy is one of the top ranked causes of stress, and stress is unhealthy for your baby. To help you cope, try different breathing techniques, meditation styles, yoga classes, talk therapies, or go for a simple Girls' Night Out!

Louise Broadbridge - Our Expert Midwife

Hi, my name is Louise, I am a Registered Midwife, founder of Let's Talk Birth and Baby and the face behind Instagram's The Honest Midwife. I have worked in health settings for the past 30 years, the majority of which have been working in children and family settings.

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your tips & to do's:

As you approach your third trimester, you may want to consider getting registered for a birthing class, if you haven't already. These are generally offered by your local hospital, although if you have any interest in a specific method, such as the Bradley Method or Hypnobirthing, you may want to ask your midwife, obstetrician, or experienced friends, for some recommendations.

Limited class sizes tend to fill up more quickly than you'd expect. Some classes will last a couple of days, while others span over a couple of weeks or months. Do your research before deciding which birthing style is best for you. There are many techniques, such as Hypnobirthing, water birthing, the Alexander Technique, and the two most common types: the Lamaze Technique and the Bradley Method.

The Lamaze Technique teaches that childbirth is a normal, natural, and healthy process. It empowers women through education and support. This method should help you approach childbirth with confidence and explores ways to find strength, or comfort, during delivery, using various techniques for relaxation and eliminating counterproductive responses (like tensing up). The Bradley Method emphasizes having a natural childbirth alongside the active participation of your partner. Traditionally, this course is given in 12 sessions and focuses on nutrition, exercise, and techniques for relaxation, and highlights the importance of trusting your instincts during childbirth. The Bradley method also encourages and is highly supportive of breastfeeding.

If you take a class through your hospital, your class will often include a hospital tour. If you take a class elsewhere, you should still have the option to schedule a hospital tour. The hospital tour gives you a chance to see the labor and delivery areas, the operating rooms used for caesareans, the recovery and patient rooms, and the nursery area.

Some questions to consider asking while touring the hospital include:

  • What are the hospital's policies on visitors?
  • Will your partner be allowed to stay with you during labor and delivery? Throughout recovery?
  • Are private rooms available? Are they standard?
  • Do they offer breastfeeding support?

Most hospitals allow you to pre-register for childbirth, and some even allow you to fill out its forms online. This will make your arrival and check-in much faster and easier, so be sure to take advantage of this (if it's offered). You won't want to fill out your information while you’re in active labor!

If you haven't already, now is also the time to put together a birth plan. This doesn't have to be anything formal. It can be as simple as discussing your options with your doctor ensuring your preferences are known. Have a clear understanding of the experience you want for your labor and delivery. As you prepare, keep in mind that you can't control every aspect of the delivery. The best you can do is plan for what you want and be prepared for the unknown.

Don't forget to write in your pregnancy journal this week!

your symptoms

Below is a list of pregnancy symptoms commonly experienced during week 27.

  • Swelling, or edema, in your ankles and/or feet
  • Stretch marks and/or unwanted hair growth
  • Sweating
  • Thicker hair
  • Heartburn
  • Stronger nails
  • Braxton Hicks
  • Tingling, numbness, or pain in your hands and wrists
  • Bleeding and/or swollen gums
  • Interrupted sleep
  • Backaches and/or leg cramps
  • Crazy dreams
  • Fetal activity
  • Fetal hiccups

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Your Baby Club

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Articles on YourBabyClub.com are a mixture of informative pieces, anecdotal accounts and professional advice from our panel of Bloggers, Writers and Experts. The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official view of Your Baby Club.

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