You’ve made it to 25 weeks pregnant! This exciting milestone means you are now entering the third and final trimester of your pregnancy journey. As your due date gets closer, you’ll start noticing some significant changes happening with your body and baby’s development. This article provides a comprehensive overview of what to expect during week 25 of pregnancy so you can stay informed and prepared.
Key Takeaways When 25 Weeks Pregnant
- Baby is around 13 inches long and over 1.5 pounds now
- You may start seeing stretch marks as your belly expands
- Back and hip pain are common as belly grows
- Baby’s lungs and brain are developing rapidly
- Baby’s kicks are stronger and more noticeable
- Start thinking about maternity leave and birth plans
- Prenatal testing like glucose screening occurs around this time
Common Physical Changes
Your Growing Belly
At 25 weeks pregnant, your uterus has expanded significantly to accommodate your growing baby, so it’s normal for your belly to really “pop” around this time. Your fundal height (the distance from your pubic bone to the top of your uterus) is likely measuring around 251⁄2 to 27 centimeters now.
You may notice new stretch marks on your abdomen, breasts, thighs, and other areas as your body changes shape to make room for baby. Using lotions and moisturizers can help, but some stretch marks are inevitable. Wearing loose, comfortable maternity clothes and exercising safely can also help ease discomfort.
Back and Hip Pain
That growing baby belly also puts more pressure on your back and hips, which can lead to nagging aches and pains around this stage of pregnancy. Some ways to find relief include:
- Gentle stretches and prenatal yoga
- Sitting with good posture
- Sleeping on your side with a pillow between your legs
- Applying heat pads or getting a massage
- Asking your partner for a back rub
- Wearing supportive shoes
- Taking warm baths
If back and hip pain persist, talk to your doctor about safe over-the-counter pain medications or other possible solutions. Don’t ignore severe or worsening pain.
Increased Vaginal Discharge
Hormonal changes and increased blood flow to your vaginal area can cause more vaginal discharge during pregnancy. It’s usually clear, white, or pale yellow. But if you notice green, yellow, or foul-smelling discharge, tell your doctor as it could signal an infection.
Braxton Hicks Contractions
As your uterus grows, you may start experiencing practice contractions known as Braxton Hicks. They are usually infrequent, irregular, and painless at this stage. Changing positions, walking, and drinking water often makes them go away. But notify your doctor if they become frequent, regular, or painful as that can signify preterm labor.
Between back pain, leg cramps, heartburn, frequent urination, and getting comfortable with your growing belly, sleep struggles are very normal at 25 weeks pregnant. Try sleeping propped up on pillows, sleeping on your left side, avoiding liquids before bedtime, and asking your doctor about safe sleep aids. Rest is important, so don’t feel guilty about napping.
Hormone fluctuations can cause hot flashes and sweating episodes during pregnancy. Wearing light, breathable clothing and staying hydrated can provide some relief.
Baby’s Development at 25 Weeks
Your baby has come a long way in their development and is starting to look more like a tiny newborn! At 25 weeks pregnant, your baby is around 13 inches long from head to toe and weighs approximately 1 1⁄2 pounds.
Your baby’s brain is rapidly developing. The surface of their brain is getting more complex as more grooves and indentations form. This allows the brain to fit inside your baby’s small skull while also creating more surface area for sensory information.
Your baby’s lungs are developing tiny air sacs and blood vessels this week. This is in preparation for breathing air after birth. Though the lungs are still immature, they are making good progress.
Your baby’s sense of hearing is continuing to improve. They can recognize your voice and will respond to loud noises with increased movement and a faster heart rate. Your baby’s eyes are starting to open some of the time now too, though vision is still very blurry.
Immune System Development
Your baby is rapidly building up antibodies that will help fight infections after birth. Most antibodies are transported from your bloodstream through the placenta. That’s why staying up-to-date on your own vaccinations during pregnancy is so important.
Bone Marrow Development
Your baby’s bone marrow is starting to make blood cells now. This will eventually allow their body to produce red blood cells to carry oxygen and white blood cells to fight illness independently after birth.
Movement and Growth
As your baby grows bigger, their kicks and punches will get noticeably stronger and more apparent. You should be feeling frequent jabs, wiggles, rolls, and stretches at this stage. Track your baby’s activity patterns so you know what’s normal for them. Decreased movement can sometimes signal a problem.
Your baby is actively practicing skills like blinking, sucking, gripping, and listening in preparation for their arrival.
Common Tests and Appointments
Your next prenatal checkup will likely happen around 25-26 weeks pregnant. Here are some things that may occur:
Fundal Height Measurement: Your doctor will measure from your pubic bone to the top of your uterus with a tape measure to track your baby’s growth in centimeters.
Fetal Heart Rate Check: The doctor will use a Doppler device to listen for your baby’s heartbeat and check that it falls within the normal range (120-160 bpm).
Glucose Screening: This routine screening test checks your blood sugar levels to screen for gestational diabetes, which occurs in around 9% of pregnancies. You’ll have to drink a very sugary solution, then get your blood drawn an hour later. An abnormal result means you’ll have to take a longer 3-hour glucose tolerance test.
Tdap Vaccine: If you haven’t already, your doctor may recommend getting the Tdap vaccine during weeks 27-36 of pregnancy to help protect your newborn against whooping cough in their first few months of life. The CDC recommends all pregnant women receive this vaccine during each pregnancy.
Group B Strep Test: This vaginal and rectal swab test looks for the bacteria Group B Streptococcus (GBS), which can be passed to the baby during delivery and cause serious illness. It’s usually done at 35-37 weeks, but discuss timing with your provider.
Kick Counts: Your doctor may instruct you to start formally tracking your baby’s kicks and movements daily. Normally you should feel at least 10 movements within a 2 hour period. Less than that could indicate a problem requiring further testing.
Planning Ahead For Month 7
Here are some helpful things to think about and plan for during your 25th week of pregnancy:
Take Childbirth and Newborn Care Classes
Now’s a great time to start taking birthing, breastfeeding, and newborn care classes if offered by your hospital or community groups. Classes often fill up fast, so sign up early. Talk to your doctor about pain relief options and create a flexible birth plan.
If you don’t already have a pediatrician selected, start researching options and schedule interviews. Ask about office hours, insurance, after hours care, vaccination policies, and how long you can expect to wait for appointments. Try to decide by 28 weeks.
Consider Cord Blood Banking
Umbilical cord blood is rich in stem cells that may help treat certain diseases. Review the pros and cons of private cord blood banking versus public donation. Many experts encourage public donation as the likelihood of using your own cord blood is low.
Install Car Seat and Prepare Baby Nursery
Get your baby’s nursery organized and install an infant car seat base in your vehicle well ahead of delivery. Rear-facing car seats should always be placed in the back seat. Review proper installation and strapping techniques so you’ll be ready to safely transport your newborn.
Look Into Maternity Leave Benefits
If you plan to take maternity leave from work, now is the ideal time to review company policies and file any necessary paperwork. Understand how much paid time off you can receive versus unpaid leave through FMLA or short-term disability. Make a plan for coverage while you are out.
Make Freezer Meals
Stock up on healthy frozen meals and snacks that will be easy to prepare after baby arrives. Lasagna, casseroles, soups, and muffins are great options. This will save time and money those first few months as a new parent.
Things to Watch Out For at 25 Weeks
Though most pregnancies proceed smoothly at this stage, be sure to watch out for these issues and alert your doctor right away if you notice any:
- Regular or painful contractions before 37 weeks (could signal preterm labor)
- Heavy vaginal bleeding or fluid leaking from the vagina (may indicate placenta problems or preterm premature rupture of membranes/PPROM)
- Decreased fetal movement over a 12-24 period (baby should be very active by now)
- Severe abdominal pain, dizziness, headache or changes in vision (signs of potential preeclampsia)
- Severe nausea, vomiting and ketones in urine (could indicate gestational diabetes or HELLP syndrome)
- Signs of urinary tract infection like fever, back/side pain, or foul-smelling urine
Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy at 25 Weeks
- Get moderate daily exercise like walking, swimming, or prenatal yoga
- Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains
- Take your prenatal vitamins and stay hydrated by drinking 8-12 cups of water daily
- Get enough rest and take breaks when you feel tired
- Find time to relax and pamper yourself as you transition into the third trimester
- Don’t be afraid to ask your partner, family, and friends for extra help as needed
- Connect with other expecting mothers through apps, classes, or support groups
FAQs About Week 25 of Pregnancy
What size is my baby at 25 weeks pregnant?
Your baby is around 13 inches long from head to toe and weighs approximately 1 1⁄2 pounds at 25 weeks. They are about the size of a cauliflower.
What are normal fetal movement patterns at 25 weeks of pregnancy?
By week 25, you should notice your baby moving around frequently, even if the movements are still gentle and fluttering. Some gentle prodding of your belly can prompt additional squirms and wiggles. Call your doctor right away if you notice any significant decrease in normal movement patterns.
Is nausea common again in the third trimester?
Some women do experience nausea or vomiting late in pregnancy as the uterus expands putting pressure on the stomach. But new onset severe nausea after 25 weeks could signal a complication like preeclampsia, so contact your doctor, especially if accompanied by pain or other symptoms.
Should I be able to feel the baby’s position at 25 weeks pregnant?
Maybe! During week 25, some mothers start noticing what part of the baby they are feeling move, like a back scratch or a foot sticking out. But every pregnancy is different, and an anterior placenta can make positioning harder to discern. Don’t worry too much about positioning yet.
What vaccines should I get during pregnancy?
The CDC recommends pregnant women receive the Tdap vaccine for whooping cough and the flu shot. The COVID-19 vaccine is also recommended during pregnancy. These provide antibodies to protect your baby. It’s also important to be up-to-date on routine vaccines like MMR and varicella if not received prior to pregnancy.
Week 25 Means Baby is Almost Here!
You’ve made it to the home stretch now as you start the third trimester of your exciting pregnancy journey! While you may be eager to meet your little one face-to-face soon, try to cherish these final weeks and take care of yourself. Continue focusing on maintaining a healthy diet, exercising safely, getting adequate rest, and monitoring your baby’s activity regularly. Speak up about any concerning symptoms and lean on your support system for extra care and comfort. Stay positive knowing every day brings you one step closer to holding your precious newborn!