You are now in to the last weeks of your pregnancy, we hope you are embracing what you have learned so far. Did you know that your baby can now hear the tones and patterns in your voice and will be able to recognise it once born?
Did you know that your stress in the last trimester can have an impact on your baby's anxiety (and other mental health concerns) once born? It's time to ensure these last weeks are as stress free, and fun too, as possible.
From 24 weeks baby’s brain development is such that the things that they hear, see, touch, taste and smell are all consciously registered in the brain. So much so that by the time they are born they can recognize their mother’s familiar tones and patterns, and very quickly form new neural pathways that recognize their mother’s smell and feel comforted by the skin to skin touch of their parents.
These conscious sensory connections can be nurtured further in the womb by interacting with your baby with familiar sounds, regular touch or massage and even reading to you baby. You can connect with your baby before they are even born, nurturing their wellbeing and development from the very beginning.
What is important is that those connections continue when they are born.
Feet up for 30
Your baby should now have a discernible routine, or the beginning of one at the very least. We have created a Routine Tracker (add your email below to access) in the downloads so that you can start to record movements and obvious times of no movements, to watch the pattern and routine emerge. Remember, your baby's Routine in the Womb is unique to them.
Baby is still developing at this stage and can both they and the pregnancy can still be impacted negatively by stress. Stress may not always come from something obvious like arguments or trauma, it can build over time and be from things like:
travelling to and from work
having to train someone before your maternity leave starts
working too close to your due date to maximise time off when baby is here
already having a child to care for
not having anyone to support you
any or all of the above on top of your life stresses
Women used to give up work just as they entered the last trimester allowing them to rest and nest at home which meant stress levels were greatly reduced. Modern lifestyles and working regulations don't support this and it is damaging to the wellbeing of Mum and baby. So until we can change legislation, we suggest you combat the impacts of stress by putting your feet up and resting (properly, not whilst still working) for at least 30 minutes every day. That's 30 mins of 'you time' with a cup of tea, listening to some music or a meditation, whatever will make you RELAX and in turn de-stress. Reducing those cortisol levels is our continuing mission!
You can even enjoy the time to bond and connect with your baby as they will now be having their first conscious sensory connections (that is a brain/neural response to a sensory stimuli). Do they seem to like you resting and snooze too? Do they respond to the type of tea you drink or do they take the opportunity to move and stretch if they feel you massaging your belly? Whatever you do, by putting your feet up for 30 minutes a day you will be reducing stress levels and helping to ensure you enjoy a BETTER, positive pregnancy AND birth.
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