Week Twenty Seven: Eyes can open
You are 27 weeks pregnant. (fetal age 25 weeks)
Welcome to the third trimester. Congratulations! You have made it 2/3 of the way through. It may be hard to believe, but your baby now appears much like he or she will look like at birth. Baby now has eyebrows and eyelashes and hair is growing everyday. The muscle tone is improving and his or her body is getting plumper.
Your little one’s brain continues its rapid growth. Don’t forget to share music, conversation, and even books with your baby. Baby may start to recognize your voice as well as your partner, so be sure to say lots of nice things.
The retina at the back of your baby’s eyes is beginning to develop. Those beautiful baby eyes can open now, and the baby will notice and may turn his or her head if you shine a flashlight against your belly.
At 27 weeks, your baby’s length will have tripled or quadrupled from the 14 week mark. If your baby is born this week, the chances of survival is now at least 80 percent. However, serious complications are still possible.
Just 10 weeks to go until your baby reaches full term! From now until about week 30, he goes through a very active phase. His muscles are increasingly developed and his nervous system is mature enough to control some of his bodily functions. So you can look forward to your baby kicking and moving around a lot.
The rest of the time he will be sleeping. He’s settling into a sleep cycle that’s similar to what he’ll follow as a newborn: asleep during the day and awake at night! His brain is growing rapidly, too, and the grooves on the surface are developing. Some experts believe your baby begins to dream around now while he’s in REM sleep.
He’s practicing his sucking reflex a lot now. This is important as it will help him feed effectively once he’s born. Meanwhile his muscles, organs and limbs are all formed, and throughout this final trimester he’ll be busily building up fat stores and muscle mass.
This week, your baby weighs almost 2 pounds (like a head of cauliflower) and is about 14 1/2 inches long with her legs extended. She’s sleeping and waking at regular intervals, opening and closing her eyes, and perhaps even sucking her fingers. With more brain tissue developing, your baby’s brain is very active now. While her lungs are still immature, they would be capable of functioning — with a lot of medical help — if she were to be born now. Chalk up any tiny rhythmic movements you may be feeling to a case of baby hiccups, which may be common from now on. Each episode usually lasts only a few moments, and they don’t bother her, so just relax and enjoy the tickle.
Baby’s lungs are going through some major developments these days, which (combined with the opening of previously plugged nostrils) means he’s now able to practice inhaling and exhaling. The lack of air in your womb means every “breath” is filled with amniotic fluid, but hey — it’s progress.