Day 190, Week 28

Your Pregnancy Journey

You are slowly inching closer to the last few weeks of your pregnancy. At this stage you are probably experiencing different changes in your body, in your bottocks, waist etc. Your breasts will also change in size and will feel tender and sore in different parts of your pregnancy trimesters. By now you are probably already using a good pregnancy bra. If not please look at investing in one. At this stage your breasts may also leak colostrum. However the presence or absence of colostrum during pregnancy is not indicative of the amount of breast milk you will produce in the post natal period.

You could look at buying a few maternity essentials to keep you comfortable and happy during your pregnancy

1. MATERNITY BRAS: This is a very wise investment. The first pregnancy change even before you miss your period is breast changes. The breast becomes tender and sore, and the areola darkens. It is important to wear the right bra for comfort and to prevent sagging. You may have to change sizes frequently, so don’t buy too many pieces. Always remember to try them on before buying.

2. MASSAGE LOTION: Pregnancy changes are most prominent in the abdomen, breast and buttocks. Use a vitamin E based massage oil or lotion from the 12th week on to help reduce the incidence of stretch marks. You can continue using this even post delivery.

3. MATERNITY CLOTHES: You may be able to use your regular clothes up to the 5th month, but invest in a couple of maternity pants and jeans which you can mix and match with various tops. Choose basic and neutral colours as this will help you to stretch your wardrobe.

4. SUPPORT PILLOW: Shaped like a wedge, this pillow supports the abdomen when you sleep and can offer lumbar support when you sit.  Contact Awww for details on this today

5. BODY PILLOW: A body pillow will help support your back and your legs when you sleep. The pillow also helps you to maintain your side sleeping position and will prevent you from rolling over on your back. Contact Awww for details on this today

You will now also be visiting the doctor once in two weeks. If your blood group is RH negative the doctor will recommend an antibody check.

Baby’s growth

Your baby at this stage has extensively developed but is still quite tiny in size. The baby is now about 38cms long and weighs app.900 gms. In some pregnancies if the baby is born now he/she has a good chance of survival.

Day 192, Breastfeeding

If your reading this article your either a pregnant mom, a breastfeeding mom, have finished with the phase of breastfeeding your baby or there will be some of you who may not have been able to breastfeed inspite of best efforts. Whether you breastfeed or not or how long you breast feed does not make you a good or bad mother. The recommendation from the World Health Organisation is to breast feed exclusively for the first six months and then start weaning foods. However breastfeeding should continue for the first one year of life. If possible for the mother breastfeeding should be continued well into the second year as well. However again the choice of how long to continue is really yours. There should be no guilt attached to your breast feeding choices Having said that let’s look at some interesting tit bits about breastfeeding. One of the most common questions that a new mom has is “Why am I not making enough milk?” 100% of moms will make just a little milk, which is really a few drops in the first 2-3 days. It is important to understand the baby’s needs and requirements here. For the first 8 weeks your baby will probably feed every 2-3 hours and this cycle will continue in the night as well. The new born stomach is very small, about the size of a marble and needs to be fed frequently. The key to making enough milk is frequent feeding – So remember the more you feed the more milk you will make. In the first few days the baby may cry a lot and then will calm down once he comes close to the mom. It is a natural assumption that because he has been put to the breast he has calmed down. But in reality he is calming down due to hearing the mother’s heart beat. The size of the breast has no relevance to the amount of breast milk you will make. However frequent feeding in the first few days will allow your milk glands to expand and hence increase the capacity for the long term. Remember the hormone that initiates breast milk is Oxytocin, which is really your love and happy hormone. So the more relaxed and stress free you are the more Oxytocin you will produce and the more Oxytocin rush there is, the greater the milk let down reflex.