The child starts to recognize his parents’ voices. It can also hear his mother’s heart and rumbling stomach.
Now you might start to feel the pregnancy in your legs and feet. The legs swell, and some women get varicose veins. If you experience such problems then rest with your feet in high position, you may want to ask your partner for massage. Support socks can also help.
Also, lying on the floor, with both lower legs up on a pallet, relieves the back effectively.
Severe convulsions in the veins disturb the night’s sleep for some pregnant women. You can prevent by avoiding stretching your toes. An oncoming cramp can be counteracted by angling the foot upwards, or pressing the foot blade against a wall or headboard.
Read more about tips on good pregnancy training.
- BestAAH: Look for maternity sports bras? Check here to find 5 types of pregnancy sports bras.
Now the child’s hearing is well developed and it already recognizes its parents’ voices. The noise level inside the stomach is quite high, much like a messy urban environment. The child hears the sounds of the mother’s body; heart beating, belly beating.
The brain’s development goes into the next phase. The child’s balance organ in the inner ear has been developed and it can feel what is upside down.
The baby’s skin is no longer translucent, it is red and thin but is protected by the ointment-like fat layer.
The lungs are maturing more and more.
At this time, many are already beginning to think about natural or medical pain relief during the coming birth.
Maybe you – or you – want to take a prophylaxis course ?
Check with the midwife about what’s available.
Pregnant? Listen to yourself the most!
Chronicle with six personal advice before your birth by Ulla Waldenström, midwife and professor
I have recently become both a grandmother and a grandmother. Much has changed since I was pregnant, and since I worked as a midwife in maternity care.
Most noticeable was that almost nothing I offered for dinner was allowed to eat or drink. Everything seems to have become dangerous..!
Another difference from earlier is all decisions that today’s future parents have to make:
Ultrasound examination or not?
Do we want to know the child’s gender in advance?
Should we investigate if the child has Down syndrome ?
Which maternity care center – midwife should we choose (if you live in ex Stockholm)?
And most recently: Can we ask for a caesarean section ?
Much of the difference between the past and the present depends on the development of knowledge, that research has given us new knowledge about risks. New technical methods have made it possible, for example, to look into the stomach of the expectant mother with ultrasound.
Another change is that healthcare in Sweden has become less authoritarian. Prospective parents not only listen to the midwife or the doctor, but seek information on the Internet and elsewhere. Many want to make the decisive decisions themselves.
All this is positive! Still, there is a back side, and so far it has not been given much room in the debate.
How big is the risk – really?
One problem is how to assess different risks. On the health side it is safest to inform about all risks, even the very small ones, because then you have “your back free” if the worst should happen.
But health care does not provide guidance to the prospective mother about how to orient herself in the large flow of information, about how large the various risks are. In the worst case, she unnecessarily restricts her life, without it, for that reason, to feel completely confident that the baby in her stomach is doing well.
All choices can be an asset, but also a limitation, namely if they take space from the woman’s own thoughts and feelings during pregnancy.
It is usually said that pregnancy is a mental preparation for parenthood.
Concerns about a reasonable amount are natural, it stimulates one’s own thoughts and thoughts about childbirth and parenthood. The woman’s mental preparation also includes listening to one’s own body, wondering that it can make a life grow.
In the past, we received confirmation that the child was alive and well by feeling attentively aware of the first fetal movements. Numbers receive confirmation by prospective parents through ultrasound examination.
It has been speculated that this means that women today are not given the same chance to develop responsiveness, and thus perhaps also confidence, to their own bodies.
Medical technology as compensation for own power
Previously, the date of the birth was calculated on the basis of the woman’s own information about her latest menstruation, today the calculation is made on the basis of measuring the size of the fetus on an ultrasound screen.
Modern maternity and childbirth care has in many ways made the woman more dependent on others than on herself. Could this have any impact on her self-image as a future and a new mother?
But these thoughts are still marginal – the most important thing is that the child is well! Sure it is. But the fact is that the ultrasound examinations that are done routinely during pregnancy have not affected either the mortality or the morbidity of the children.
The ultrasound has so far shown its value mainly for specific medical problems. Ultrasound is also not something to play with – incorrectly used, its energy levels can raise the temperature of the fetal tissue to harmful levels.
Sometimes I wonder if we have developed a greater confidence in medical technology than in ourselves. Today’s pregnant woman, unlike my own generation, has grown up in an environment full of amazing devices, such as computers, the internet and mobile phones.
Devices that have opened up new worlds without being associated with any obvious disadvantages. With medicine and medical technology it is usually different. They have advantages, but also disadvantages.
Good healthcare is about using a certain method correctly, ie. about seeing both the opportunities and the risks.
Caesarean section, for example, is not a mild intervention, although it has become very safe. The risks of the procedure as such are greater than that of a normal vaginal delivery, but in many situations it is life-saving.
Big intervention, small profit
Today, I experience a lack of critical thinking and action, both with expectant parents and healthcare professionals. We are intervening more and more in natural birth without the medical outcome or the experience improving to a corresponding degree.
We must not lose sight of the fact that nature has arranged reproduction in a very neat way, that the female body has in fact been gifted with the opportunity to bear and give birth to children.
So listen to it – and trust yourself!
Six good tips for those who are worried about childbirth
- The women’s body – your body – is made to give birth to children, to motherhood. Spend a few minutes a day thinking positively about this.
- Don’t just listen to others. Try listening inward, ponder what you think.
- Allow yourself to enjoy being pregnant. Get dressed and stand in front of the mirror. Concentrate on the miracle that you can make a child grow in your body. If you have that ability, you will also have the ability to give birth to the baby.
- Do not allow the control need to take too much energy. Any information you find, such as online, does it help or block it from your concerns? You can read on indefinitely, but will never have full control when it comes to it.
- Put words into your emotions. Talk to a wise person about your concerns and it will be easier to handle. Try to remember earlier occasions in life when you have overcome pain or challenges.
- anxiety and fear is overwhelming: Talk to your midwife, she can provide special clinics for childbirth fear, sometimes called Aurora Clinics.