All About Baby
Your unborn baby’s survival rate outside the womb increases as each week passes. If he didn’t open his eyes last week, chances are he’ll take his first peek this week. Your baby-to-be’s skeleton and muscles are maturing quickly. This week he can turn his head from side to side.
By your 28th week of pregnancy, most of Baby’s lanugo has disappeared and he may have a full head of hair.
All About You
Thinking about baby names? Here at Babble we take baby naming seriously. Check out our baby name finder!
Added baby weight is taking its toll on your body. Chances are you’re feeling aches and pains all over! Your feet, ankles, and hands may be swollen. Cramps may cause intense pain in your legs, especially at night, and it may be hard to find a comfortable sleeping position. You may also be experiencing false contractions (called Braxton Hicks) where your abdomen tightens, then relaxes. Hang in there—you’re getting closer to your due date!
Your uterus is around three inches above your navel. If you are Rh negative, you’ll be getting a RhoGam injection right around now. And those tightening sensations? Braxton Hicks “practice” contractions.
Choosing Your Baby’s Name
You are only a few weeks away from the big day. Have you been mulling over what you’re going to name your new addition? No doubt friends and relatives have been offering subtle—and sometimes not so subtle—suggestions, but when it comes to choosing a name for your baby you should take your time. Enjoy the process! Here are a few ways to track down original, meaningful, and timeless names:
- Look to the government: There’s an easy way to figure out what the most popular baby names are—ask the government. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has been tracking baby names since the 1880s. The SSA’s handy website allows you to search how popular your baby’s potential name may be. For instance, in the 1880s the most commonly used names were John and Mary. Contrast that with the 2000s where Jacob prevailed for boys and Emily for girls. Use this site to search names nationally or within your state. You can even find out the most popular names for twins.
- Search your family genealogy: Looking for something more personal then the top 20 name choices for a given year? Consider a family name. Nothing will endear your grandmother to your newborn more than using her name for your new little one. You don’t need to stop with familiar relatives, either; explore your family history and you may dig up stories of pioneers, cowboys, generals, maybe even a gypsy or two. These names can give your child a connection to your family beyond his genes.
- Consider favorite characters: Favorite books, television shows, rock bands, and movies can also be sources for names. You might want to pass on Han Solo, but Luke (minus the Skywalker) might be your way to pay tribute to your favorite film. Jane Austen fan? Consider using a character’s name from one of Austen’s books for your own baby.
- Agreeing on a Name
It can be hard to decide on a name. You and your partner may struggle to come up with that perfect choice. Instead of settling on one name, try making a list of names instead. Many couples wait until their baby is born before they decide, while others are naming their baby-to-be in utero. Whether you select a name before or after your baby arrives, don’t be surprised if friends and relatives don’t agree with your choice (unless, of course, you name the baby after one of them!).
Making Your Baby’s Name Permanent
After your baby’s birth, the hospital will give you several documents to fill out that will declare, amongst other things, your child’s name. You’ll be asked to provide your baby’s name for a birth certificate and to submit paperwork toward obtaining your newborn’s Social Security card. While your baby isn’t required to have a Social Security number, it’s much easier to get one by filing the information at the hospital versus waiting—the process can take much longer if you apply at a local Social Security office. Your child’s social security card won’t cost you anything and will be mailed to your home address a few weeks after you turn in the paperwork.
Once you have your child’s social security card, make sure to keep the number private. Thieves can steal your baby’s identity if they get their hands on your child’s number. Keep the card in a safe at home versus carrying it in your wallet.
Q & A
What’s on your mind about Week 28? Other women have wondered…
Q: If I have cats should I be concerned about toxoplasmosis?
Ask your health care provider to check you for toxoplasmosis antibodies. If you have them, you’ve been exposed and are immune. If not, then just use handwashing as protection after handling the cats. Read more about toxoplasmosis.
Q: Why is it better to sleep on the left side during pregnancy?
I have my doubts about the absolute necessity of left-sided sleeping. And I know of no scientific research that says that babies do any better if their moms always slept on their sides. The argument for not lying flat on your back comes from the fact that when you are supine the uterus lies against the vena cava, the large vein that carries blood from your body back to your heart. Read more about sleeping during pregnancy.
Q: What are some good musical baby names?
Musicians’ names can be sweet music to expectant parents’ ears. Try the first or last names of Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, Mick Jagger, Jimmy Hendrix, Bob Marley, and Johnny Cash. Read more about musical baby names.
The Name Game
Have you and your partner begun discussing baby names? Chances are your partner has been playfully tossing about baby names since she was a little girl. Time for you to play catch up think about the names you like and your preferences. Some parents fret over finding the perfect name (but chances are once you start calling your new baby by name, dozens of times a day, it will sound perfect pretty quickly).
There are many creative ways to think about naming your baby. A name can be quite powerful in uniting disparate cultures, religions and/or ethnicities in your respective families. For instance, Latin-African American parents might name their child Raheem Santos or maybe Nordic-Chinese parents could try Eric Cheng. This could help Baby right from the get-go be grounded in the various cultures and backgrounds of you and your partner.
In addition, naming your baby is an opportunity to show respect to family members, those who are alive or who have passed away. Giving your baby the same name as a relative you had a special relationship with can not only transfer positive feelings to your baby, but can also help give your child a connection to your family’s history and ancestry.
Names are names, but sometimes names can have meaning and that meaning can help your baby begin to build its own identity.