Week Twenty-five of Your Pregnancy

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Week 25 Info

WEEK 25

By pregnancy week 25 your baby is approximately 1.5 pounds and a little more than 11 inches long.  From this point on however your baby's weight and length may vary somewhat.  Every baby is different as you'll soon realize during your pregnancy.  Some babies will be born weighing 7 pounds and others 10.

The structures of the spine - 33 rings, 150 joints and 1000 ligaments - begin to form. The blood vessels of the lungs are developing and the nostrils begin to open.  Busy week!

Your baby has less and less room to move in your womb after you are about 24 weeks pregnant. You should be feeling strong kicks by 24 weeks pregnant, but gradually your baby's movements will start to seem slower and more rhythmic rather than all over the place.  This is perfectly normal as things get tighter in there.

You are probably feeling very good about your pregnancy at this point. You are showing, people know you are pregnant and your overall health and energy have improved.  Perhaps it is time to start thinking about what happens after baby comes.  Is the nursery ready?  Where will your baby sleep?  Have you chosen baby names yet?  These little things need your attention, too.  During the next few weeks, you should take care of whatever is needed so you will be ready for your big day.
Many women have a difficult time dealing with stress and anxiety during pregnancy.  This may result for many reasons, including pending anxiety and stress related to adding a new member to your family.  For other women, anxiety and stress result from increasing discomforts associated with side effects during pregnancy.  Meditation and yoga may help address anxiety and stress.  Make sure you let your provider know if these feelings of anxiety begin to disrupt your day to day life and your relationships.
There are many people that believe that reading to their baby or playing music to their baby while in utero is beneficial.  While there are several studies that both support and refute these notions, the fact of the matter is anything that helps you feel more bonded and loving to your child is worthwhile. If you feel like playing calming music to your baby then do so.  Remember that babies can hear in the womb, and you never know your little one might be tapping their hand to the beat of the music just like you.
Did you know that your baby will actually recognize you before all other people immediately after birth? Your baby can actually detect your unique smell after birth. This provides your baby with comfort and warmth. Your baby also learns to recognize your voice very shortly after birth. One way you can encourage your partner to bond with your baby before birth is by having them read or talk to your baby while you are pregnant. This will encourage your partner at the very earliest age to participate in baby's life and help him feel like an important partner in the pregnancy and birthing process.
Some women will experience a condition called sciatica during pregnancy. This often happens when the baby's head presses against the pelvic bones causing the nerves in your lower back and legs to be compressed. Severe pain often results and can occur in the lower back, leg or legs and even buttocks. Some women will also experience numbness or tingling in the legs. For some women the pain is so severe they aren't able to lift their leg or walk without excruciating pain. So what is a woman to do? Typically most women will realize a complete relief of symptoms once the baby is born. Until then there are many things you can do to help alleviate the pain-

Apply a hot or ice pack for 10 minutes to the area that is most painful.
Sleep on a firm mattress.
Avoid sitting for long periods of time.
Avoid frequent bending at the waist.
Try to determine which movements make the pain worse and then avoid them. Consider physical therapy if your physician recommends it.
Try to stand up straight.
Use support cushions and a full body pillow in bed.
Don't lift anything heavy and when you do lift be sure to bend from the knees.
Consider chiropractic care or physical therapy.
Remember like anything else, this too shall pass. Some women find that their sciatic pain is greatly relieved simply by getting a few days bed rest.  In many cases the pain subsides within 1-2 weeks, though it may not disappear completely until after delivery.

Now is a good time to start thinking about your work schedule when your baby arrives. If you want to take a leave, check with your employer about your options. Your company may qualify for the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. Most companies still do not pay for maternity/paternity leave, some do but do not announce that information unless you ask, while other companies have a whole range of benefits.

You may have other options available such as telecommuting "working from home", job sharing and/or flexible work schedules. Start your research now and do some soul-searching about how much time off you wish to have.
Make sure to rest frequently, laying on one side or the other.  Start collecting supplies for the baby's first weeks.  You may be able to find a layette list from your provider.  This is a list of the most commonly needed clothing for a newborn.  Make a list of things you need for your friends and family, especially if you have a baby shower planned.  Ask your provider for information on feeding your baby.  Decide if breastfeeding or bottle feeding is best for your baby and you.

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