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Pregnancy At Week 25

Pregnancy At Week 25

Pregnancy at week 25 is an exciting week! Your baby is so much bigger and stronger than ever before and as your head toward that due date the momentum just keeps gathering.

What’s happening with Baby

At 25 weeks pregnant, your baby is about 13 1/2 inches long and weighs roughly a 1 1/2 pounds. That’s about the size of your average acorn squash! That sounds so tiny, but that little baby is definitely viable and only has a few more months to bake before they are ready for the world! Your little baby is starting to fill out. She’ll lose that loose, wrinkled baby skin look and start to plump up and her skin will smooth out. She’s also growing more and more hair. At this point, if you could see your baby’s hair you would be able to tell whether or not they will be curly headed, blonde or ginger!

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    Your baby’s skin is getting pinker this week as capillaries are forming under the skin and filling with blood. Your baby at week 25 is looking more like a newborn and less like a squishy alien! In the second half of the week, your baby’s lungs will begin to develop capillaries as well, which will put them just one step closer to taking that first big breath of fresh air.

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    Another important breathing development that can start happening in week 25 of pregnancy is when your baby’s nostrils start to open. Up until this point in the pregnancy your baby’s nostrils have been stopped up, but now they are unclogging and your baby is starting to take some practice breaths.

    What’s happening with your body?

    During pregnancy at week 25 your miraculous, ever-expanding uterus has reached the size of a soccer ball. Congrats on already becoming a soccer mom! While that might seem huge, just wait until you’re 9 months (or more!) along. You will be yearning for that cute “little” bump you’re rocking these days. With the extra size might come some extra discomfort. Unless your doctor has instructed you otherwise, it’s still okay to continue to exercise and move around as much as you feel comfortable. Just remember to drink plenty of water, stay off of your back and stop exercising if you feel any pain, dizziness or discomfort. Keeping yourself active through all of the changes will help prepare your body for labor and help you stay healthy and happy for your baby.

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    Some common symptoms that might be cropping up around this time include: heart burn, varicose veins, carpal tunnel, and snoring. If you’re experiencing any burning in your chest and throat keep some Tums or Rolaids close at hand. Popping a few Tums a day might become a habit through the rest of your pregnancy. Varicose veins are never fun, but are totally normal. The extra blood volume during pregnancy puts strain of your veins which causes them to bulge and protrude. Avoid the development of varicose veins by wearing loose fitting clothing to aid the flow of blood. The increased blood flow during pregnancy can also put pressure of the nerves in your wrist, which can cause carpal tunnel syndrome. If you are experiencing tingly or painful hands talk to your doctor about wearing a wrist brace. Snoring is also an unfortunate side affect of pregnancy and the increased blood supply. The increased blood flow to your mucus membranes can cause you to become congested which will cause snoring. If your snoring is truly affecting your sleep then talk to your doctor. Snoring can also be a sign of sleep apnea which can be a more serious problem.

    Suggestions for this week

    If your feeling pretty uncomfortable at this point because of any of the symptoms I mentioned above or any other discomfort, then start addressing it now. There is only more baby to grow and more bodily change ahead so it’s smart to get ahead of the curve.

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    If indigestion and heart burn are really bothering you then considering adjusting your diet. Try eating five smaller meals a day instead of three big ones. The less food there is in your tummy to digest the easier it will be and the less pain you are likely to experience. Avoid carbonated or fatty foods because they take longer to break down. If your heart burn is the worst at night try to stop eating several hours before bed in order to give your stomach the time it needs to digest before bed.

    If other physical pains are bothering you trying different stretches, routines, or habits to begin alleviating the pain. Maybe you need more rest at this point? Maybe you actually need to go on shorter and more frequent walks? Getting to know your body and listening to it is an important part of pregnancy at week 25, labor and motherhood in general. Start now and you will thank yourself later!

    Featured photo credit: Phalinn Ooi via flickr.com

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    Emily Myrin

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    Published on December 14, 2018

    14 Helpful Tips for Single Parents: How to Stay Sane While Doing it All

    14 Helpful Tips for Single Parents: How to Stay Sane While Doing it All

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, over 27% of children under the age of 18 are living with a single parent.[1] That’s over 1/4th of the U.S. population.There is a common misconception that children who grow up in single parent homes are not as successful as children living in two-parent homes.

    One crucial detail that was often left out of studies when comparing single and two-parent homes was the stability of the household. There is a correlation between family structure and family stability, but this study shows that children who grow up in stable single-parent homes do as well as those in married households in terms of academic abilities and behavior.

    But providing stability is easier said than done. With only one adult to act as a parent, some tasks are inherently more challenging. However, there are a few helpful things you can do to make the parenting journey a little easier for yourself and stay sane while doing it.

    1. Don’t Neglect Self-Care

    Before anything else can be done, you must be caring for your own needs adequately. Only when you are feeling well-rested and healthy can you be at your best for your children.

    Many parents tend to put their kids’ needs first and their owns last, but that will result in a never-ending cycle of exhaustion and feelings of inadequacy. Make time to eat regularly and healthfully, get plenty of rest, and squeeze in exercise whenever you can. Even a short walk around the neighborhood will help your body get much-needed movement and fresh air.

    Your children depend on you, and it’s up to you to make sure that you are well-equipped and ready to take on that responsibility.

    2. Join Forces with Other Single Parents

    At times, it may seem like you’re the only person who knows what it’s like to be a single parent. However, the statistics say that there are many others who know exactly what you’re going through.

    Find single parents locally, through your kid’s school, extracurricular activities, or even an app. There are also numerous online communities that can offer support and advice, through Facebook or sites like Single Mom Nation.

    Although single moms make up the majority of single parents, there are more than 2.6 million single dads in the U.S. A great way to connect is through Meetup. Other single parents will more than happy to arrange babysitting swaps, playdates, and carpools.

    Join forces in order to form mutually beneficial relationships.

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    3. Build a Community

    In addition to finding support with other single parents, also build a community comprised of families of all different types. Rather than focus solely on the single parent aspect of your identity, look for parents and kids who share other things in common.

    Join a playgroup, get plugged in at a church, or get to know the parents of the kids involved in the same extracurricular activities. Having a community of a variety of people and families will bring diversity and excitement into your and your kids’ lives.

    4. Accept Help

    Don’t try to be a superhero and do it all yourself. There are probably people in your life who care about you and your kids and want to help you. Let them know what types of things would be most appreciated, whether it’s bringing meals once a week, helping with rides to school, or giving you time to yourself.

    There is no shame in asking for help and accepting assistance from loved ones. You will not be perceived as weak or incompetent. You are being a good parent by being resourceful and allowing others to give you a much-needed break.

    5. Get Creative with Childcare

    Raising a child on a single income is a challenge, with the high cost of daycares, nannies, and other conventional childcare services. More affordable options are possible if you go a less traditional route.

    If you have space and live in a college town, offer a college student housing in exchange for regular childcare. Or swap kids with other single parents so that your kids have friends to play with while the parents get time to themselves.

    When I was younger, my parents had a group of five family friends, and all of the children would rotate to a different house each day of the week, during the summer months. The kids would have a great time playing with each other, and the parents’ job becomes a lot easier. That’s what you would call a win-win situation.

    6. Plan Ahead for Emergencies

    As a single parent, a backup plan or two is a must in emergency situations. Make a list of people you know you can call in a moment’s notice. There will be times in which you need help, and it’s important to know ahead of time who you can rely on.

    Look into whether or not your area offers emergency babysitting services or a drop-in daycare. Knowing who will be able to care for your child in the event of an emergency can relieve one potential source of anxiety in stressful situations.

    7. Create a Routine

    Routines are crucial for young children because knowing what to expect gives them a semblance of control. This is even more important when in a single parent home.

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    If the child travels between homes or has multiple caretakers, life can seem extremely chaotic and unpredictable. Establish a routine and schedule for your child as much as possible. This can include bedtime, before/after school, chores, meal times, and even a weekend routine.

    Having a routine does not mean things cannot change. It is merely a default schedule to fall back on when no additional events or activities are going on. When your children know what to expect, they will be less resistant because they know what to expect, and days will run much more smoothly.

    8. Be Consistent with Rules and Discipline

    If your child has multiple caretakers, such as another parent, grandparent, or babysitter, communicate clearly on how discipline will be handled. Talk to your ex, if you are sharing custody, as well as any other caretakers about the rules and the agreed-upon approach to discipline.

    When a child realizes that certain rules can be bent with certain people, he/she will use it to their advantage, causing additional issues with limits, behavior, and discipline down the road.

    This article may help you to discipline your child better:

    How to Discipline a Child (The Complete Guide for Different Ages)

    9. Stay Positive

    Everyone has heard the saying, “Mind over matter.” But there really is so much power behind your mentality. It can change your perspective and make a difficult situation so much better.

    Your kids will be able to detect even the smallest shift in your attitude. When the responsibilities of motherhood are overwhelming, stay focused on the positive things in your life, such as your friends and family. This will produce a much more stable home environment.

    Maintain your sense of humor and don’t be afraid to be silly. Look towards the future and the great things that are still to come for you and your family. Rediscover and redefine your family values.

    10. Move Past the Guilt

    In a single parent home, it is impossible to act as both parents, regardless of how hard you try. Let go of the things that you cannot do as a single parent, and instead, think of the great things you ARE able to provide for your children.

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    Leave behind the notion that life would be easier or better with two parents. This is simply not true. There is a multitude of pros and cons to all family dynamics, and the one you are providing for your kids now is the one that they need.

    Don’t get bogged down by guilt or regret. Take control of your life and be the best parent you can by being present and engaged with them on a daily basis.

    11. Answer Questions Honestly

    Your kids may have questions about why their home situation is different from many of their friends. When asked, don’t sugarcoat the situation or give them an answer that is not accurate.

    Depending on their age, take this opportunity to explain the truth of what happened and how the current circumstances came about. Not all families have two parents, whether that is due to divorce, death, or whatever else life brings.

    Don’t give more detail than necessary or talk badly about the other parent. But strive to be truthful and honest. Your children will benefit more from your candor than a made-up story.

    12. Treat Kids Like Kids

    In the absence of a partner, it can be tempting to rely on your children for comfort, companionship, or sympathy. But your kids are not equipped to play this role for you.

    There are many details within an adult relationship that children are not able to understand or process, and it will only cause confusion and resentment.

    Do not take out your anger on your kids. Separate your emotional needs from your role as a mother. If you find yourself depending on your kids too much, look for adult friends or family members that you can talk to about your issues.

    13. Find Role Models

    Find positive role models of the opposite sex for your child. It’s crucial that your child does not form negative associations with an entire gender of people.

    Find close friends or family members that would be willing to spend one-on-one time with your kids. Encourage them to form meaningful relationships with people that you trust and that they can look up to.

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    Role models can make a huge difference in the path that a child decides to take, so be intentional about the ones that you put in your kids’ lives.

    14. Be Affectionate and Give Praise

    Your children need your affection and praise on a daily basis. Engage with your kids as often as possible by playing with them, going on outings, and encouraging open dialogue.

    Affirm them in the things that they are doing well, no matter how small. Praise their efforts, rather than their achievements. This will inspire them to continue to put forth hard work and not give up when success is not achieved.

    Rather than spending money on gifts, spend time and effort in making lasting memories.

    Final Thoughts

    Being a single parent is a challenging responsibility to take on. Without the help of a partner to fall back on, single parents have a lot more to take on.

    However, studies show that growing up in a single parent home does not have a negative effect on achievement in school. As long as the family is a stable and safe environment, kids are able to excel and do well in life.

    Use these tips in order to be a reliable and capable parent for your kids, while maintaining your own well-being and sanity.

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    Featured photo credit: Bruno Nascimento via unsplash.com

    Reference

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