Note: The length, weight and size mentioned below are only a guideline, as these vary from baby to baby and from one pregnancy to another.
What is going on with your baby during week 24?
From crown to rump your baby measures at 8½ inches, and weighs about 1 lb 6 oz. Fetus is now the size of a banana.
All of the main organs are working, except for the lungs which baby will not use until after birth.
Your baby is becoming much more aware of his surroundings and sounds and movement outside the uterus.
The main aim now is to fine-tune his systems and lay down more fat.
Your baby's unique hand and foot prints are forming.
Baby's heart rate has dropped to about 140-150 beats a minute.
The meconium of baby's first stool is starting to form in the bowel.
Within the lungs small air sacs or alveoli are forming.
Sweat glands are forming in baby's skin.
Baby is now able to cough and hiccup.
Baby's skin is no more translucent but reddish in color.
Week 24 Fetus
Changes in you at this stage Week 24
Around this time you may have a growth spurt so your bump becomes more visible.
The fundus is now above your belly button.
When the baby moves you may be able to make out a little foot or leg through the abdominal wall.
Your body is retaining water, adding weight on your thighs and upper body.
You may feel warmer these days.
You may be suffering from heartburn, muscle aches and sore feet, fatigue and dizziness.
Call your doctor if dizzy spells are common as this may be a sign of anemia.
Good to Know in Week 24
If your baby was born now, he would have a 1-in-4 or 5 chance of survival.
Apart from linea nigra and darkened areolas, pregnancy can make skin protrusions grow i.e. skin tags. Moles may grow in size or change. If a mole changes size, shape or color you need to have it checked just to be on the safe side.
Urine sample at each prenatal visit will test for ketones, protein and glucose. Excessive protein or albumin in the urine can be a sign of preeclampsia. It is also a possible indication of UTI or renal (kidney) impairment. The presence of white blood cells also points to infection. Pregnant women typically excrete 260 mg of protein or less in a 24 hour period.
Ketones may appear in pregnancy if you are suffering from severe nausea and vomiting. These substances are produced when the body is not getting sufficient fuel from food and ahs to metabolize fat for energy. This process results in ketones spilling into the urine.
Wholesome Advice in Week 24
If you have intention of buying a humidifier for your baby, you might as well buy one now and use it to manage your nose misery and dry skin.
If your neighborhood is being sprayed with bugs spray, stay inside with your windows shut. No one knows whether the sprays are safe for pregnant women or not. Since it can kill those bugs, it makes sense to be cautious.
Antibiotics only work on bacterial infections and are useless against any viral infections. Don't take them unless you and your doctor are sure that a bacterial infection is the cause of your ailment.
Finger and toe nails grow faster in pregnancy. A great time to go for a manicure or pedicure. If you have varicose veins skip the calf massage routine.
Your actions can impact your baby's growth at this stage
Weight gain during pregnancy can impact your posture. Pregnancy is also a stressful time and a lot of people react to stress by hunching their neck and shoulder muscles. Spasms can result. If you are at your computer all day or don't move around enough on your job you need to remind yourself to turn your head and roll your neck around to help avoid tension headaches and muscle pains. Neck pain is also caused by poor sleeping positions or by inactivity that comes with bed rest.
Check your posture to see if you are sitting up straight from time to time; sit in a chair that lends your spine support.
Sit completely back in the chair and place a pillow for the small of your back.
Support your feet on a footstool or a stack of old directories.
Gentle heat pads and kneading on the affected areas and mild stretching helps.
Check with your doctor for the most suitable pain reliever.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Around the 5th and 6th months of pregnancy, you may find pain, numbness and tingling and burning sensations in your wrists, fingers and even in your arms. This is most likely due to carpal tunnel syndrome, a condition that often occurs in both hands of pregnant women. Excess fluid which your body is now retains presses against the median nerves in your arm and wrist. The carpal tunnel ligament is a tough membrane that holds the wrist bones together. Any swelling in the area can compress the median nerve. Temporary in nature, these pains go away after the baby is born.
In the meanwhile it helps if you wear a wrist splint at nights and during activities that make the symptoms worse such as typing, holding a book or when driving. Elevating your arms and hands help drain the fluid trapped in your tissues
Rub and shake your hands periodically
Soaking your wrists in warm water or resting them on a heating pad at night may help
Take frequent breaks if you are working on a keyboard for prolonged hours
Apply cold or hot compresses to the area.
Make sure your diet and prenatal vitamin has an adequate supply of vitamin B6 as studies show a link between this condition and a lack of this vitamin.
In very severe cases a minor surgery may be needed to rectify the problem.
Common Concerns in in Week 24
How do I know my baby is moving around enough?
You will soon get to know your baby's pattern. Some babies are more passive - no one really knows if babies do vary in the amount they move of if some women are better at detecting these movements. Movements are more obvious when you are resting. The most important factor is that you feel some movements from now onwards if not earlier.
Why my bump is smaller than my friend's when our babies are due at the same time?
Your baby is roughly the same size as your friend's baby at this point. Bump size depends on the amniotic fluid level, the amount of space inside your abdomen which is governed by your physical structure and overall size. Generally bumps tend to be bigger in petite women than in women of bigger frames. If this is not your first baby, your bump will get bigger quicker because the uterus and abdomen have stretched in the past.
Weekly Nutrition advice in Week 24
Eating out is an issue with some pregnant ladies. There is some reservation towards exotic foods such as Mexican, Thai, Greek or Vietnamese. It is OK to eat out but you may be averse to certain foods.
For now stick to foods or eateries that are familiar; chicken, salads, fish, fruits and vegetables are good choices. Avoid spicy fare.
Eating out may also cause water retention problem in some of you. Besides spicy foods, avoid foods laden with salt, calories and fat such as gravies, fried foods, junk foods and rich desserts.
Besides the calories such foods won't settle too well on you. It is also very challenging to eat right when you eat out every day; working women are only too familiar with this problem.
Bring home packed meals whenever you can. If you have to eat out like at lunch meetings, be selective in your food choice.
Look for healthy low-cal foods. For example request for steamed food instead of fried. Top up your meals with a fruits or vegetable or fruit juice.
Disclaimer: Information contained on this Web site is intended solely to make available general summarized information to the public. It should not be substituted for medical advice. It is your responsibility to consult with your pediatrician and/or health care provider before acting on any advice on this web site. While OEM endeavors to provide up-to-date and accurate information, it is not liable for any advice whatsoever rendered nor is it liable for the completeness or timeliness of any information on this site.