Can you believe you have finally made it to your third trimester? Your belly is getting bigger every week now. When you look back on your pregnancy, you may quickly forget how your pregnant belly looked. There are some fun things you can do to try to remember your pregnant belly for years to come. You may have heard about belly castings before. Belly castings are generally made a few weeks before your due date and are very easy to do. In this week’s newsletter we are going to tell you how to make a cast of your belly and give you some ideas on ways to decorate your belly cast. If you want, you can even have a belly casting party with your friends.
Week 27 Pregnancy Symptoms
Your growing uterus may be putting extra pressure on your rectum, causing you to lose some control over the muscles in your rear. Add your sluggish digestive system to the equation (thanks to pregnancy hormones that relax intestinal muscles) and you may find that you’re particularly gassy. Try to eat six small meals a day (instead of three large ones) so you don’t overtax your digestive system.
Occasional Faintness Or Dizziness
If you thought your days of feeling light-headed were over after your first trimester, think again; for some women, that bulging belly puts pressure on blood vessels, which reduces blood flow to the brain and causes dizziness. Keep blood circulating and pumping to your brain by drinking plenty of water each day.
Possible Nasal Congestion
High levels of estrogen and progesterone increase blood flow to the mucous membranes in your nose, causing them to swell. If your stuffy nose is making it hard for you to breathe at night or making you snore try wearing a nasal strip at bedtime to open up your nostrils.
Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)
For some expectant women, it may feel as if their legs take on a life of their own tingling and jittery especially when they lie down at night. Talk to your practitioner about this (in some women RLS is linked to iron-deficiency anemia or a sensitivity to certain foods), and consider yoga or other relaxation techniques, which may help.
Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)
This weird pregnancy symptom develops when the hormone relaxin makes the ligaments in your pelvic joint too relaxed and stretchy, causing the pelvic joint to become unstable. If this is causing you pain, ask your practitioner about wearing a pelvic support belt (available online), which stabilizes the ligaments and helps keep the pelvic joint in place.
Inflamed and irritated gums are quite common during pregnancy since ramped-up hormones may cause gums to swell and leave your mouth more vulnerable to bacteria and plaque. When you brush your teeth, remember to brush your tongue as well to minimize the amount of bacteria in your mouth.
Skin, Hair, And Nail Changes
Pregnancy hormones can cause hyperpigmentation of the skin – particularly if you have darker skin to begin with. This can result in darker freckles or moles, a dark line down the center of your tummy (linea nigra), or patches of darkened skin on your face (called chloasma). Don’t worry, most discolorations fade a few months after giving birth – just do your best to stay in the shade since sunlight can intensity hyperpigmentation.
At week Twenty-Seven of your pregnancy, the baby should be about 14-1/2 inches and weigh in about 2 pounds. In the last weeks of pregnancy, the baby will gain ½ a pound per week. The baby’s skin is wrinkled only because they have been surrounded by water for the last 5 months. The baby’s skin will look wrinkled until at least a few weeks after the baby is born. The skin will stretch out and will look and feel smooth.
The baby’s retina’s are developing at a good pace, they will soon be able to help the baby adjust to light images. These layers are considered to help the brain receive light and some images as well as be able to transmit them the information of what they are seeing to the brain. The membranes that have been covering the baby’s eyes will start to separate and in a few weeks, the baby will be able to open their eyes.
As everyone knows all baby’s eyes are blue when they are born. If the eye color is going to change to another color they will do so a few weeks after birth. At this week in pregnancy the baby will continue to begin their own sleeping patterns and waking up patterns. You will soon see that their sleeping patterns are opposite as yours. Most of the time you feel the baby kick is when you are trying to get some sleep.
It has been said that baby’s start to dream while in the womb. The brain is still active and the grooves on the surface of the brain will begin appearing as the brain tissues start to develop. You will also notice the baby hiccuping more and more because the lungs are maturing and they are practicing breathing.
Making a Cast of Your Belly
The easiest way to make a belly casting is to buy a belly casting kit. You can actually purchase the materials on your own but belly casting kits are only $30-40 and much more convenient for most moms. You will need an assistant to help you make your belly cast. It is very easy to do but not a one person job.
You will want to be seated in a chair when you make your belly cast. Take a drop cloth or old newspapers and place it under the chair where you will be sitting. You may want to cover the chair as well. Then you want to have all your supplies placed close by. Fill a bucket or plastic basin with warm water to wet your plaster strips in. Open the plaster rolls that come with your kit and cut them into strips. You will want to cut your strips into 6 and 12 inch strips.
Have the person doing your belly cast cover your belly and any other area to be casted with petroleum jelly. This will keep the plaster from sticking to your skin. Then dip the strips one at a time into the warm water and have the caster apply to your belly. The caster will want to wear gloves when she is applying the plaster strips. The caster should try to layer the strips so that they overlap each other. The strips should be applied going in different directions until you have the strips about three layers thick.
Once you have the belly covered and are satisfied with how it looks, you need to let the cast dry. It will need to dry for about 20-30 minutes. When it is dry, it will start to separate and pull away from your skin. Gently remove the belly cast once it is dry. The cast will need to dry completely for about 2 days before you can finish decorating it. Once it has completely dried, use the sanding screen that comes with your kit to smooth out any bumps or rough spots. Then you can decorate your cast with acrylic paints or other decorations of your choice.
Changes With Your Body
At week Twenty-Seven your body will need more caloric intake. It would be safe to start with 300 to 350 calories. You will gain a bit more weight right up until the 36th or 37th week of pregnancy. By now many pregnant women think they look fat and it can be a bit depressing for them. But never alter your diet to take in fewer calories, by eating less you are depriving the baby of less calories as well.
If you have any concerns about your weight, now is the time to talk to your doctor. Remember you are also carrying a baby, so some of the weight you will loose when the baby is born. Stay on track with your prenatal vitamins and any nutritional supplements that you may be taking. At this week, the uterus is leaning on the rib cage. If notice you may be out of breath from just getting dressed everyday. This would explain why. The uterus will prevent the lungs from full expanding cause some breathing problems. Talk to your doctor but you should not worry, there is nothing to worry about.
As you enter into the third trimester, talk to your doctor about the warning signs of premature labor. This tends to happen more in the summer months due to lack of hydration. It is very important to stay hydrated, carry a water bottle around with you at all times. You may spend more time in the bathroom but you are doing what you have to, to stay hydrated.
Some of the warning signs to look for are bright red blood from the vaginal area. If you experience a sudden rush of a watery discharge from the vaginal area, contact your doctor right away. You may experience severe pain in the pelvic area or a very dull pain in the lower back. Some women have felt contractions for more than an hour or so. If your hands and feet start to swell, it could be a sign of premature labor. It is your body and you will know when something isn’t right, contact your doctor or go to the nearest emergency room right away.
Uterine Monitoring At Home
Some women are candidates for home uterine monitoring after27 weeks pregnant. These include women who have a history of premature labor or those at risk for premature labor. High-risk complications can often place a woman at risk for premature labor. In these cases it helps to monitor the uterus for contractions to help prevent a delivery that is too early.
Doctors can provide you with a home uterine monitoring device if you are at risk. This simple tool allows you to record any uterine contractions you have while at home. These contractions are automatically transmitted from your home phone to a center where a healthcare provider can evaluate them. Sometimes insurance covers the cost of these devices, as they are certainly less expensive than the cost of having a premature baby.
This stage of the pregnancy is the important stage. You have to keep healthy both physically and mentally. Continue to take the prenatal vitamins and add more fruits and vegetables to your diet. If you feel that something isn’t right, then contact your doctor or visit your local emergency room right away.