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Pregnancy health centre

30 weeks pregnant

WebMD Medical Reference
Medically Reviewed by Dr Rob Hicks


How is your baby growing at 30 weeks?

Your baby should be about 40cm long and weigh around 1.4kg (3lb). The head has been growing to accommodate the brain, and your baby's head and body should now finally catch up proportionally to that of a newborn's. Your baby will continue to put on fat and gain about 227gm a week for the next 8 weeks. This fat will be necessary to help control body temperature. The baby will more closely resemble a newborn in appearance too, now that his or her eyebrows and eyelashes are fully formed, the hair on the head is thicker and there are fewer wrinkles in the skin. The covering of fine hair known as lanugo may begin to disappear.

For the remaining several weeks, your baby's development will mostly be concentrated on putting on the pounds (though there will still be some refining of the major organs such as the lungs and digestive system), as well as storing nutrients such as iron, calcium and phosphorus, in preparation for the first few months of your baby's life outside the womb.

How are you changing in week 30?

Perhaps you think there's no room for your bump to expand, but your womb has moved about 10cm above your belly button – and there's another 10 weeks, give or take, to go. Don't forget that your lungs will be expanding to help make room for baby. You'll continue to put on weight over the next several weeks, but half of this weight gain can be attributed to the baby, placenta, increased womb size and amniotic fluid – and with all the extra work your own body will be putting in to sustain a healthy baby through a growth spurt, it will need the energy supplied by the remaining extra weight.

With the necessary hormonal changes that relax ligaments to the pelvic area in preparation for childbirth, other areas of your body will be experiencing the effects of these hormonal changes. You may need to start wearing a larger size in shoes – at least until after childbirth, when your feet will eventually return to their normal size.

The tiredness you experienced in the first trimester can come back in the third trimester, when you find your size makes it harder to get comfortable while sleeping at night and going about your everyday activities during the day. Increased trips to the toilet won't help either. A newly acquired habit of snoring may also make slumber time difficult, and when you do fall asleep you may wake up and be confused after having intense dreams. Some women have nightmares that involve their baby or giving birth. However, remember that pregnancies are not all the same: some women never feel tired during their pregnancy while others are tired the whole time.

About 1 in 5 women experience a condition known as restless leg syndrome in the last trimester of pregnancy. The symptoms include an uncomfortable sensation in the legs and an irresistible need to move them, especially at night, though occasionally the arms are involved too. This can involve an involuntary jerking of the limbs. The condition can vary from being mild to severe, but the symptoms usually stop after childbirth.

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