Your baby’s eyes can now open and close and can sense light changes. The lanugo is starting to disappear from the baby’s face. Your baby’s hearing is getting better. He or she can now hear the outside world quite well over the sound of your heartbeat. The baby exercises by kicking and stretching. He or she can also make grasping motions and likes to suck its thumb.
Your baby is coated with a waxy substance called vernix caseosa which protects his skin, and he is building up a layer of fat which will help him to maintain his body temperature once he is born.
Your baby is continuing to grow and develop. If the baby was born now, its chances of survival are better than last month, (28 weeks – 90% of babies survive premature birth) some complications are still possible. By the end of this month, your baby will be approximately 16 inches (42 cm) long and weigh about 2.5 or 3 pounds (1100 to 1400 grams).
As your stomach expands, you may notice stretchmarks on your stomach or thighs. Your navel will begin to stick out if it doesn’t already. Indigestion can be a problem as your growing baby presses on your stomach. Some women have lower back pain or sciatic pain as the abdomen grows larger and the pelvic joints loosen in preparation for delivery. Leg cramps may pose a problem; adequate calcium in your diet can help.
You may feel painless contractions, called Braxton Hicks contractions. These contractions are a way for your uterus to ”practice” and do not signify the onset of labour. Your antenatal checks will increase in frequency, perhaps to every 2-3 weeks. Remember to give your employer notice of when you plan to stop work and when you plan to return.