Your growing baby now measures 39cm from crown to heel and weighs approximately 1.1kg. Gentle exercise and eating healthily are important for your wellbeing.
3D Ultrasound image of a fetus at 29 weeks gestation.
At week 29, the fetal weight is just over 1.1kg and fetal length is approximately 39cm from crown to heel, showing a steady growth. Fetal weight is likely to triple between this week and birth, although fetal length will only increase by a relatively small amount. The head also continues to grow to accommodate the ever-developing brain and the muscles and lungs continue to mature throughout this week. Bones are also continuing to harden and approximately 200mg of calcium are deposited into the skeleton each day. Fetal movement is now becoming more restricted as there is less available space to move. The fetus is now less able to turn easily and movements tend to be somewhat smaller than in previous weeks.
Genitals are now fully developed. If the baby is male, the testicles will now have descended from the abdominal cavity –near the kidneys – and now rest in the scrotal sac. If the baby is female, the clitoris is clearly visible, as it is not yet covered by the labia, which are still developing. The labia will grow and cover the clitoris during the last few weeks of pregnancy.
Hair on the head continues to grow, as do eyebrows and eyelashes. Most babies respond to both external sound and light by the end of this week. The eyes now have pigmentation in the irises and are a grey/blue colour.
During the third trimester nutrition continues to play an important role in both your own, and your baby’s health. It is important to eat foods that are high in protein, vitamin C, iron and calcium. Your midwife can advice you on a healthy diet during pregnancy and can also prescribe any additional supplements that you may require.
Back ache is a common pregnancy-related symptom during the third trimester. If you are suffering from back pain, you may find it helpful to sit on the floor with your back straight against a wall and your shoulders pressed back. Many women also find massage beneficial. You should check that any massage oils you use are safe for use during pregnancy. Varicose veins are also common during this stage of pregnancy and are simple swollen blood vessels that can appear anywhere on the body but are most commonly seen on the legs. Some women experience only mild swelling and achiness while others report pain and bulging blue veins. Maintaining good blood flow by drinking plenty of water and taking gentle exercise can both help to alleviate the symptoms but you should consult your midwife if you have any concerns about varicose veins. Most women find that their varicose veins disappear after they give birth.
Many women also find that digestive discomfort, such as heartburn and trapped wind become more frequent during this stage of pregnancy. Eating small amounts of food throughout the day, as opposed to a couple of large meals, can help. Your midwife, Doctor or pharmacist will also be able to advise you about which antacids are safe to take during pregnancy. Digestive problems can also lead to problems sleeping. Avoiding eating too close to bedtime may help with this. You may also find that taking gentle exercise such as going for a walk during the day helps to promote a more restful night’s sleep.
Pre-eclampsia, vaginal bleeding, premature birth and obstetric cholestasis are important complications in late pregnancy. Pre-eclampsia manifests as headaches, disturbances of vision, swelling particularly of the legs and face and upper abdominal pain. It can result in a small baby and the tummy being smaller than it should be. Bleeding form the vagina is abnormal in late pregnancy. Painful contractions can result in premature birth. Itching of the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet may be due to obstetric cholestasis which is a threat to the baby. More generalized itching is common and usually harmless.
Visits to the midwife or GP become more frequent in later pregnancy. The midwife or GP will ask about symptoms; taking the blood pressure and checking the urine. Referral will be made to the consultant as necessary.
In a private self referral clinic additional blood tests and ultrasound scans can be done at short notice with rapid reporting of results. The woman and her partner can see a consultant for opinion and advice. This is done at a convenient time and with plenty time for discussion.
We had received possible worrying news from our NHS anomaly scan, without much information provided or confirmation. I am so pleased that we came to The Birth Company for reassurance, as we are now extremely happy that everything is fine. Shahrzad was fantastic and went through the whole anomaly scan thoroughly, explaining everything and looking in detail at each area. Nothing was rushed and she took her time to make sure baby was in the correct position to get the best results. We can’t thank her and Dr Gibb enough for the confidence they have given us. Would highly recommend The Birth Company for all scans.
' Professional and reassuring 'Helen Campbell
The sonographer was ready as soon as I arrived, and she was extremely calming, personable and professional. The scan and blood test where efficient without feeling rushed and all very easy. These appointments can feel uneasy and make you feel anxious but I felt reassured and in professional hands the whole time
I saw Kate throughout my first pregnancy and am now doing so again with my second. She is absolutely amazing, she explains everything really clearly, and has answered all sorts of bizarre questions and worries I have had. On top of being clinically excellent she is also just the loveliest person and always a pleasure to see.Sarah Elliott
We had the harmony test with the Birth Company and had a reassurance scan with sonographer Kirsty McGarry who was absolutely lovely and really put our minds at rest. We had been scared by our NHS dating scan and left feeling like there was something wrong. We explained the situation and was treated very professionally and with good care. Also speedy appointments also as I had phone in the morning and got an appointment by afternoon. So thankful.Ashley and Tom
Really friendly, efficient service. Great experience overall. Had the Panorama. My appointment was with Kate who was absolutely fantastic. The results came really quickly. Have a comparison with private healthcare elsewhere and must say that The Birth Company was just how I would like to be treated when I pay for medical services - attentively, calmly, friendly, in a pleasant environment that doesn't look like hospital. Top marks!Anna
' Efficient, friendly and always on hand to provide last minute appointments 'Hannah Murphy
The Birth Company has been excellent, providing timely scans and blood tests during my IVF treatment abroad. Staff are always friendly and extremely efficient. I would highly recommend coming here.
' Professional and friendly 'Lyndsey Dilla
When I first contacted the Birth Company I spoke to Danielle. She was fantastic. She went above & beyond to put me at easy & make the journey from Kent as stress free as possible. Every staff member that myself and my husband have come into contact with have been approachable, professional and friendly. Kate scanned me the first time and put me completely at easy. Lisa on reception is professional and very approachable. Highly recommended
' Highly recommended 'Emelie
Donald was so lovely! I was so nervous as I have a bad history and he was super quick and confirmed my baby's heartbeat as quickly as he could. He spent time showing me the baby and the anatomy and it was the best money I have ever spent! The reception girls were lovely too - considering they deal with babies day in day out they were super excited for me! Thank you so much one and all! If only I lived in London and could have all my scans with you!
Great Portland Street