Pregnancy Tracker: Week 30

Pregnancy Tracker: Week 30




You are now 30 weeks pregnant, in month 7, with 2 months, or 10 weeks left to go. Your baby is about the size of a cabbage, weighs roughly 1.4kg and measures 41cm head-to-heel.

The little foetus is fully formed and looks just like a tiny newborn baby!

Your baby’s organs, systems and senses continue to mature daily, and every additional day spent inside your uterus means that your baby stands a better chance of breathing on his own.

Baby’s development at 30 weeks pregnant

The hair on the head has grown quite considerably and the eyelashes and eyebrows are evident. Tiny little fingernails and toenails are growing. Your baby is continually active, and can suck fingers and thumbs, make fists and grab hold of whatever is in reach, like feet, nose, hands and umbilical cord. Don’t worry about the cord – it is strong and resilient enough to withstand any manipulation by your baby!

The oily vernix and the furry soft hair (lanugo) that have been covering the baby’s body for quite a few weeks, now starts to disappear as they are no longer needed for protection. However, some babies will be born with patches of this still clinging to the body.

The skin is less translucent now as the cells are starting to make melanin, which gives the baby a healthy-looking colour. Melanin continues to be produced until the baby is about 6 months, so the permanent skin tone will only be finalised then. Layers of white baby fat are forming, which gives the skin a smoother and plumper look.

Baby’s eyes are able to open wide and close again, and baby can distinguish between light and dark. It has been noted that a baby will turn his head towards a beam of light shone on the abdomen. Soon the pupils will be able to constrict and expand.

Hearing is quite advanced, so keep talking and singing to your little one so your voice becomes a familiar comfort in the days after birth.

The most significant growth at this stage takes place in the rapidly developing brain. Indentations and grooves are being formed, which creates more surface area for brain cells. The brain will triple in weight between now and birth and continues to develop until your child reaches his twenties.

Conditions to watch out for from 30 weeks pregnant


Your baby is filling out fast, and taking up more space in your uterus, causing it to expand. This may result in your belly button popping out, and making it feel sensitive to the touch. Clothing rubbing on your belly button can be irritating, so wearing loose clothing may help.

In rare cases an umbilical hernia can develop. This is called an incarcerated hernia and occurs if a bit of intestine pushes out and gets stuck in your belly button. This can be very painful and dangerous so call your healthcare provider urgently as you may need surgery to rectify it.


Higher levels of oestrogen can lead to vaginal leakage, and discharge tinged with brown or pink is usually nothing to worry about and is due to an extra sensitive cervix that can be easily irritated.

Occasionally vaginal discharge is more serious and can be a sign of placenta previa, placental abruption, infection, or preterm labour. It may be difficult to know when a discharge is serious or not, but be guided by these signals, and call your healthcare provider immediately if you notice:

  • Bright red discharge.
  • More than about two tablespoons of discharge.
  • Green discharge.
  • Strong, unpleasant-smelling discharge.


The normal position of the placenta is near the top of the uterus. Placenta previa is a condition where the placenta is lying low in the uterus and covering the cervical opening. This position can cause serious bleeding and could mean that you would have to deliver your baby earlier than planned and would probably need a caesarean section.


This is a serious condition in which the placenta detaches from your uterus before birth. It can separate partially or completely and can happen before or during labour. It is very serious as it can deprive the foetus of oxygen and can cause severe bleeding to both you and your baby. If placental abruption occurs close to your due date, you will probably have to deliver right away. You will be closely monitored to see if a c-section needs to be performed. If you are some time away from your due date, your doctor will see if it is possible to delay labour.


This is when labour starts before 37 weeks of gestation. You may go into premature labour spontaneously if your waters break, your cervix opens early, or if contractions start. Sometimes preterm births are planned for medical reasons, for example if you have pre-eclampsia. Usually a caesarean section would then be performed.


Swelling during pregnancy, especially in the last trimester, is caused by a few factors, notably hormonal changes, fluid retention and the growing uterus which is putting pressure on the pelvic veins. This pressure makes the return of blood from your legs sluggish, which results in swollen feet and ankles.

Usually swelling, as uncomfortable as it may be, is normal and does not pose a danger. However, occasionally it could be a sign of more serious issues, such as pre-eclampsia or deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

Symptoms at 30 weeks pregnancy

At 30 weeks pregnant, you will be dismayed to find that some of your early-pregnancy symptoms have returned. This is very frustrating but knowing that you only have 10 weeks to go will surely comfort you and spur you on for the last while.

  • Exhaustion has returned, but at this stage it is more due to the effort of carrying the growing baby around, and the demands it is putting on your body. The size of your bump could mean it is difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position, resulting in disturbed nights and exhaustion.
  • Mood changes are back, and you could be feeling grumpy or experiencing emotional highs and lows, confusing yourself, your partner, colleagues and friends!
  • Frequent urge to urinate can be felt now that the baby’s head is pressing on your bladder.
  • Breast tenderness is here to stay as your milk production is ramped up. You may find that you are leaking a milky fluid. This is called colostrum, and is a nutritious pre-milk that baby will need once he is born, and before your milk comes in. Colostrum is full of anti-bodies that give your baby’s immune system a good start in life.

As your pregnancy progresses you may find it is harder to keep up with normal daily activity. Try not to be a hero and exhaust yourself. Listen to your body and take breaks when you need to. Gentle, regular exercise should be continued but do not do anything too strenuous.

Everywhere you go, people will make remarks about your appearance. Take those comments with a grain of salt. However, if someone tells you that you're blooming and glowing, believe them, because you are!

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