Well, we're officially in the 6th month and feeling great. I have to admit, the changes to my body and the weight gain were really hard to digest at first, but as my belly rounds out I am beginning to feel more confident in my new body. During the past week, I have really started to feel more and more consistent movement and Travis has began feeling it as well. It's absolutely amazing and we love that time together! The baby has started responding to food (he LOVES lunch time) and noises. We've started Baby Beethoven and let him listen to it as often as possible (putting headphones on my belly). This is supposed to have the "Mozart effect" and help the baby figure out the patterns, get the brain working and help with spatial relationship skills. Regardless of if that's true or not, it is soothing to the baby and we enjoy his reaction to the music.
My progress with the nursery has been at a stand still but I hope to finish it in the near future! I know that time is ticking away!!! With Travis and I working totally opposite schedules, it can be a challenge.. but we'll get there! Happy Monday to all and thanks for following Baby H's progress =) We're totally in love with our little guy!
This week your baby's length, from crown-to-rump, is approximately 8 inches! Your growing baby has finally reached one pound. Your baby is about the size of a small baby doll and looks very human. The baby's face and body look similar to that of a newborn at this time. Your uterus can be found about 1.5 inches above your navel. Your total weight gain should be approximately 15 pounds at this time.
You might notice some Braxton-Hicks contractions around this time. These contractions are not regular and they should not be painful. Braxton-Hicks contractions prepare your body for the upcoming labor and they will get stronger as your pregnancy progresses. You might be able to feel the contractions if you put your hand on your abdomen and your baby can probably feel the uterus gripping and massaging her. It will not harm your baby, so there is no need for concern.
Fat is still being deposited at a rapid rate, but your baby still looks red and wrinkled. Skin is being produced at a higher rate than the fat is, so the skin hangs loosely. Your baby looks red because the skin is losing its transparency and pigment is beginning to form. You should be feeling your baby moving quite a bit throughout the day as she will kick and punch the uterus walls. Babies also run their hands along the umbilical cord and touch their body parts while they are in the womb. Your baby now can suck her thumb for real, where she was just sticking it in her mouth. Your baby will continue to swallow amniotic fluid and recycle it as urine. The liquids and sugars that the baby retracts from the fluid is a supplement to the nutrients that the placenta delivers. You might be able to feel small `jumps` inside of you when your baby gets the hiccups from swallowing fluid. The pancreas is developing and it will responsible for insulin production, to help break down sugars.
Oily fish in your diet could help boost your baby's health. (Women who eat oily fish while pregnant have children with better visual development, a major study at Bristol University suggests.)
As the baby continues to grow, it has less space to move around in the uterus. Bones, muscles and organs are growing steadily.
At 11 inches (the length of a spaghetti squash) and almost 1 pound, your baby is starting to look like a miniature newborn. His lips, eyelids, and eyebrows are becoming more distinct, and he's even developing tiny tooth buds beneath his gums. His eyes have formed, but his irises (the colored part of the eye) still lack pigment. If you could see inside your womb, you'd be able to spot the fine hair (lanugo) that covers his body and the deep wrinkles on his skin, which he'll sport until he adds a padding of fat to fill them in. Inside his belly, his pancreas — essential for the production of some important hormones — is developing steadily.
How your life's changing: At this point, you may find your belly becoming a hand magnet. It's perfectly okay to tell folks who touch your tummy that you'd rather they didn't. And if people are telling you that you look smaller or bigger than you should at this point, remember that each woman grows — and shows — at her own rate. What's important is that you see your practitioner for regular visits so she can make sure your baby's growth is on track.
You may start to notice stretch marks on your abdomen as it expands to accommodate your growing baby. At least half of all pregnant women will develop stretch marks by the time they give birth. These small streaks of differently textured skin can range from pink to dark brown (depending on your skin color). Although they most commonly appear on your tummy, stretch marks may also show up on your buttocks, thighs, hips, and breasts. There's no proof that lotion helps prevent stretch marks, but keeping your skin moisturized may help with any itching.
Your baby's blood circulation is completely functional. The umbilical cord system continues to grow and thicken as blood travels with considerable force through the body to nurture the baby. The placenta is now almost equal in size to the baby.
Your baby will be getting much larger during the second half of your pregnancy. Your baby's crown-to-rump length at this time is 7.2 inches and she weighs approximately 10.5 ounces. Your growing baby is about the size of a large banana. You should be able to feel your uterus about a half of an inch above your navel. Your weight gain so far will be around 10 to 15 pounds.
As your baby begins to lay down more fat, your weight will also increase. During the next 10 weeks, you will gain about half of the total gain for your entire pregnancy. Strangers can now tell that you are pregnant! You might notice an increase in appetite because you need 500 more calories a day to support your charged up metabolism. It is best to avoid processed foods or foods high in fat, calories or sugar. Some women also get strong cravings for foods. If you notice a craving for something unhealthy, you should contact your doctor. Craving for unusual things is known as pica. Some women crave cigarette ashes, charcoal, beer and other non-food items during this time.
Your baby's different organs and systems are maturing. The fetal digestive system is functioning in a simple way and your baby can swallow amniotic fluid. After your baby swallows the amniotic fluid, she is able to absorb water and sugars from the fluid and then the waste is passed as far as the large bowel. Your baby swallows the amniotic fluid in order to prepare itself for life outside of the womb. Some babies consume as much as 17 ounces of amniotic fluid in a 24-hour period. Your baby already has a high number of red blood cells and the white blood cells are beginning to be produced. Taste buds are being formed on your baby's tongue this week also.
Don't be surprised if your legs and feet become swollen throughout the day. You should try to get off of your feet some throughout the day and prop your legs up. If you notice a substantial amount of swelling, you should contact your healthcare provider for evaluation.
Not much of a change from last week... but I definitely feel like I'm doing more growing in these last few weeks. I am feeling movement here and there... but nothing very constant just yet. I don't really have many cravings aside from sharp cheddar cheese at the moment! I am still feeling great and seem to have lots of energy. We are still working away on the nursery and I will post pics soon! I am almost done painting and then I can get the furniture back in there. I have been feeling som sharp abdominal pain since Saturday night and will be going to the dr. this afternoon. I feel sure everything is fine- but would rather be on the safe side. Other than that- I just can't believe that in a short 4 months (or 140 days) our little guy will be here! CRAZY!!! But I can't wait!
I can't believe we're "officially" half way there! It seems like just yesterday that we found out we were having a baby!! Time is certainly flying! I'll post a belly pic and updates later in the day. For now... here's a little tid bit on baby H's development this week!
Congratulations! This week marks the half way point of your pregnancy. It has been 18 weeks since the date of conception and your baby's crown-to-rump length is 5.6 to 6.4 inches. The fetus weighs about 9 ounces and your belly definitely has an obvious bulge. Your waistline has expanded and is no longer visible. Your uterus has now moved up enough that it is pushing your abdomen outwards. The top of your uterus is even with or just below your navel.
For the remainder of your pregnancy, the growing uterus puts pressure on your lungs, stomach and kidneys. This will make you feel short of breath, the need to urinate more frequently and can cause indigestion. The added pressure on your abdomen can also cause your bellybutton to protrude and cause an `outy` instead of an `inny`. Many pregnant women begin to notice stretch marks around this time as well. Your abdominal muscles are being stretched and pushed apart as your baby grows inside of you.
Your baby's skin begins to thicken this week and will develop four layers. Your baby's sebaceous glands secrete a waxy substance called vernix caseosa. Your baby will be born with this wax and it will look like paste. The vernix caseosa is crucial because it protects the fetus' fragile skin from the continuous immersion in amniotic fluid. Lanugo hairs secure the vernix caseosa in place and it is thick around the eyebrows. Scalp hair and toenails are beginning to form at this point. Hair can also be seen on the upper lip and eyebrows.
Around twenty weeks, most doctors will order a routine ultrasound to check the baby's development. Measurements will be taken and the sonogram technician will check to make sure there are no defects or abnormalities. Your ultrasound technician can also see how long your cervix is and can tell you approximately how much your baby weighs at this time. Most expectant women also find out the sex of their baby during this time! If your sonographer does not offer pictures, ask them for a copy of the photos.