Pregnancy week 24

Your baby is almost completely formed, and is beginning to deposit brown fat on his or her body. The purpose of the brown fat is to retain body heat. Newborns are bad at regulating body temperature at first, which is understandable when they haven’t had to learn that yet in the comfort of your body.

Babies born at this point need very special care but they can survive. They will be in the Intensive Care Unit, probably for many months. A major problem with premature babies is lung development and they may suffer some motor-neurone difficulties that can be overcome with specialist treatment.

You are now carrying 1lb 5oz (595 grams) of baby that is 30cm long. That’s about 1ft.

Midwife and GP appointments will become more frequent as the birth approaches. You still have many weeks to go and they will monitor your blood pressure, your weight and keep a general eye on you for any unusual changes. One of these could be diabetes, due to an increase in your blood-sugar ratio. It’s not uncommon for pregnant women to become diabetic and then for it to disappear after the birth.

Don’t forget. Mr Dad-to-be should be as involved as possible, and attending appointments with you is an excellent way of them understanding what is happening to you and inside you.

You are now aware of your baby’s movements and may even be able to tell the sleep/wake cycles of your little one. It is important to recognise the signs of premature labour, which is more common in the summer months, thought to be caused by dehydration. Drink lots of water!

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