You’ve arrived at week 30 in your pregnancy — 28 weeks from conception. Only 10 weeks left to go! Let’s talk about baby’s weight gain, pelvic pressure, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other pregnancy symptoms that you might experience at week 30.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
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Week 30 Pregnancy: Baby’s Growth and Yours
At week 30 in your pregnancy, your little weighs about 3 pounds. His total length, from crown to heel, is about 15 3/4 inches.
You’re also gaining about 1 pound each week. Most of that weight is concentrated on the growth of the uterus, baby, placenta, and amniotic fluid. The top of your uterus (the fundal height) is now about 4 inches above your belly button — 12 inches above the pubic symphysis (2). Total weight gain by week 30 should be around 19 to 26 pounds if your weight was in the normal range before pregnancy. You may have gained a bit more than that if you were underweight before you became pregnant, and a little less if you entered pregnancy overweight.
Your baby is fully developed now, and her body is working to fine-tune the details in preparation for birth! Developmental changes at week 30 include:
- Baby gains about a half pound each week from now until birth.
- The surface of baby’s brain is developing wrinkly grooves as the amount of brain tissue increases.
- Baby’s bone marrow is now starting to produce the red blood cells. (Prior to this, the spleen produced the red blood cells.)
Week 30 Pregnancy: Pelvic Pressure
Within 2 to 4 weeks of your due date, the baby will settle deeper into your pelvis to get ready for birth. This is known as the baby dropping, or lightening. The weight of the baby often puts extra pressure on the pelvis, bladder, and hips. Because of your baby sitting lower in your pelvis, you might experience swelling in your legs, uncomfortable pelvic pressure, or the feeling that you have to pee all the time.
While the best way to ease the discomfort of pelvic pressure is to stay off your feet, this is rarely possible for most women. Pregnancy support belts are a great option to help brace some of baby’s weight. If you feel throbbing pressure in your perineum (vulva and vaginal area), consider a perineal support belt like the V2 supporter.
Week 30 Pregnancy: Symptoms
During pregnancy, women often retain extra fluid. You not only have an increased volume of blood, but your tissues tend to retain more fluid as well. This swelling may be especially evident in your face seeming a little puffier (because it’s easier to notice in the fine details of your face,) your fingers (because you may notice things like rings not fitting anymore,) or in your feet, ankles, or lower legs (because fluid tends to pool in the lower extremities when you’re on your feet a lot.)
Don’t restrict fluid intake. You need to stay hydrated for yourself and your baby. If your rings can’t be comfortably worn, take them off and stash them somewhere safe for now. If your feet swell uncomfortably, try periods of rest with your feet elevated, and if necessary, consider compression socks.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
The swelling of tissues can sometimes cause pressure on the nerves. Carpal tunnel syndrome, which occurs in 25% of pregnant women, is caused by the compression of the median nerve within the carpal tunnel in your wrist. Basically, there’s a hole in the bones of your wrist, and a nerve that runs through it, and when your tissues swell, it may put uncomfortable pressure on that nerve. Carpal tunnel syndrome is characterized by numbness and tingling in the hand, near the thumb (1, 3).
To decrease symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, try to avoid repetitive movements that require an angle in the wrist, such as typing. If this doesn’t help, your provider may recommend splinting your wrists. Fortunately, the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome usually go away after you give birth and your fluid levels go back to normal.
Drop by again next week to learn all about what you can expect at week 31 of your pregnancy! And if you haven’t yet, check out our guide to what to expect and do in this trimester and as you prepare for birth: Third Trimester Pregnancy & Symptoms: The Ultimate Guide.
Kopa Birth’s online birthing classes allow you to prepare for a natural hospital birth from the comfort of your own home, 24/7. Enroll today in our free online childbirth class and start preparing for your natural birth!
- Ladewig, P.A., London, M.L., Davidson, M.R. (2006). Contemporary Maternal-Newborn Nursing Care, 6th edition. Pearson Prentice Hall. Upper Saddle River, NJ.
- Glade, B.C., Schuler, J. (2011). Your Pregnancy Week by Week, 7th edition. First Da Capo Press.
- The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2010). Your Pregnancy and Childbirth Month to Month, 5th edition.