When you are 29 weeks pregnant, your baby’s movements can feel stronger and pregnancy symptoms may continue. This is the earliest you can begin paid maternity leave.
Week by week stages of pregnancy: week 29
White fat is now getting deposited on your baby’s body making them plumper. Their previously wrinkled skin will start to smooth out. Their muscles are becoming well developed and you will feel them kick and punch as they try them out. In fact you will probably be able to make out their feet and hands through your bump as they move about.
These niggles and discomforts of pregnancy may continue to bother you in week 29 of pregnancy. You may start to notice stretch marks on your abdomen or thighs – massaging with oils may lessen these if you are concerned. Muscle stretching exercises may help reduce the leg cramps at night. You may also find yourself needing to urinate more again as your baby weight puts pressure on your bladder. All of these symptoms happen as you wait for your baby’s head to move into your pelvis, giving them more room.
Week 29 of pregnancy is the earliest you can start paid maternity leave although most women will choose to work a little longer. If you are still at work it's a good time to be making your plans clear with your colleagues and if possible discussing your plans for returning to work and keeping in touch days.
If you have booked NCT antenatal classes these will start anytime now so make sure you and those attending with you have arranged to be there.
Further help and information
NCT's helpline offers practical and emotional support in all areas of pregnancy, birth and early parenthood: 0300 330 0700. We also offer antenatal courses which are a great way to find out more about birth, labour and life with a new baby.
Join in with NCT on Facebook and Twitter - it's a great way to make new friends and stay in touch with old ones. Or joint our community for new parents on Google+ where you can connect with other parents online who are experiencing similar things.