16 Weeks Of Pregnancy What To Expect – You will probably start moving your baby between 16 and 22 weeks, most likely when sitting or lying still. Veteran moms usually notice the first subtle flutters, called “quckening,” earlier than first-time moms.
Glowing skin during pregnancy is not a myth – it’s a real thing that happens thanks to fluctuating hormone levels and increased blood flow. You are most likely to get a pregnancy glow in the second trimester.
16 Weeks Of Pregnancy What To Expect
If you’re planning to take one last trip before adding to your family, check out these tips to have a great baby month.
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Your baby’s skin is thin and transparent. It will thicken and develop as your pregnancy progresses, but will remain almost transparent for a while.
On your baby’s scalp, hair follicles form a pattern that lasts a lifetime. This pattern sets the stage for how your baby’s hair will grow. New hair follicles do not form after birth, so babies are born with all the hair follicles they will ever have.
Your baby’s heart is now pumping about 25 quarts of blood each day, and this amount will continue to increase as your child develops.
As your amazing gutter grows, the round ligaments that support it will thicken and stretch. Unfortunately, this can lead to a sharp, stabbing pain on one or both sides of your abdomen, known as round ligament pain. If this happens, try to stop and rest – round ligament pain should subside quickly. If you still feel cramps after resting, call your doctor or midwife.
Weeks Pregnant: Let’s Understand What All Is Happening In Your Body!
Your body produces much more gas than usual thanks to the hormone progesterone, which relaxes muscles throughout your body – including your digestive tract. The relaxed muscles slow down your digestion, which leads to more gas and bloating and uncomfortable feelings in your gut. To get relief from gas, eat smaller, more frequent meals and take your time when eating. Avoid carbonated drinks and the artificial sweetener sorbitol. And move – a brisk walk can get your digestion moving.
Many women experience back pain during pregnancy. As your uterus expands, it weakens your abdominal muscles and puts extra stress on your lower back. Hormonal changes also loosen your joints and loosen the ligaments that connect your pelvic bones to your spine, causing instability and pain. Exercises such as weight training, prenatal yoga, walking, swimming and pelvic tilts can help strengthen muscles and reduce discomfort. You can also ask your partner or friend to give you a pregnancy massage for back pain, or book a prenatal massage with a doctor.
You have probably noticed breast changes such as sore nipples, breast tenderness, visible veins, changes in pigmentation, and more noticeable bumps on your areolas. Sometimes pregnant women also develop lumps and bumps in their breasts. These are usually benign and could be milk-filled cysts (galactoceles) or benign breast tumors (fibroadenomas). It is unusual for a woman to develop something serious (like breast cancer) during pregnancy. But tell your provider about any lumps that are hard or otherwise cause concern.
Is “pregnancy brain” real? Researchers aren’t sure, but many expectant mothers report moments of absent mindedness and difficulty concentrating. No one knows exactly why this happens, but it seems likely that a combination of stress and anxiety, fatigue and hormones lead to forgetfulness during pregnancy. If you struggle to keep track of things in your daily life, try to simplify where possible, ask for help, and use your phone’s calendar and other apps to stay organized.
Weeks Pregnant: Symptoms, Baby Size, Body Changes & More
Headaches during pregnancy are common, and can be caused by stress, dehydration, lack of sleep, cutting out caffeine, hormonal changes and other regular things. However, if you have severe headaches in the second or third trimester, it may be a sign of preeclampsia. Call your provider if you have a bad headache or a headache for the first time.
New season, new prenatal tests. Around 16 to 18 weeks, you may be offered a test for alpha fetal protein (AFP) to help rule out neural tube defects (problems with the brain and spine), such as spina bifida. (However, this test is not as accurate as the anatomical ultrasound, which you will receive in a few weeks). If you have a positive screen, your doctor will refer you to a specialist for a comprehensive ultrasound. Your provider may also order a quad screen if you did not have a first trimester screen or NIPT but want to screen for Down syndrome.
As your belly grows, it is important to avoid unsafe activities that have a high risk of falling or causing trauma to your belly. This means scuba diving, contact sports, snowboarding, downhill skiing, quad biking, horse riding, and some amusement park rides are limited.
Your caregiver will monitor your weight to make sure you are in a healthy range and gaining at a good pace. You can also use our pregnancy weight calculator to stay on track.
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Here’s a good way to think of baby names that you and your partner can live with: Make a list of ten names that you like. Ask your partner to do the same. Trade lists and repeat the names you don’t like until you (hopefully) have some in common.
Even if you haven’t had a face-to-face conversation yet, talking to your baby is a great way to start the bonding process. If a real conversation seems too strange, share your activities, read aloud or share your secret wishes for your child. Writing a letter to your baby is also a special way to bond, now and when your child reads the letter one day.
Your body works hard – so show it extra love. Use a maternity support garment if you feel pain in your hips or groin, upgrade your bra and underwear, and get a pregnancy pillow if you struggle to get comfortable in bed. The right pillow can significantly improve your sleep by supporting your back and stomach.
Consider investing in some cute flats or other good pregnancy shoes – but be aware that your feet will swell and grow later in pregnancy, so you’ll want to buy a half size or a full size up to your usual size
Early Symptoms Of Pregnancy Including Nausea And Fatigue
You may also want to treat yourself to a prenatal massage, facial or manicure and pedicure. All are safe during pregnancy as long as you take some basic precautions.
An editorial team is dedicated to providing the most useful and reliable pregnancy and parenting information in the world. When creating and updating content, we rely on credible sources: respected health organizations, professional groups of doctors and other experts, and studies published in peer-reviewed journals. We believe that you should always know the source of the information you see. Learn more about our editorial and medical review policy.
ACOG. 2021. How your fetus grows during pregnancy. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/how-your-fetus-grows-during-pregnancy [Accessed April 2022]
Hadlock FP et al. 1991. In utero analysis of fetal growth: A sonographic weight standard. Radiology 181 (1). https://pubs.rsna.org/doi/10.1148/radiology.181.1.1887021 [Accessed April 2022]
Weeks Pregnant: Fetal Development
Hadlock FP et al. 1992. Fetal cross-sectional length: reevaluation in relation to menstrual age (5-18 weeks) with real-time high-resolution US. Radiology 182: 5-1-505. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1732970/ [Accessed April 2022]
Vintzileos AM et al. 1984. Ultrasound femur length as a predictor of fetal length. Obstetrics and Gynecology 64(6): 779-82. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6390277/ [Accessed April 2022]
Hadlock FP 1984. Estimation of fetal age: computer-assisted analysis of multiple fetal growth parameters. Radiology 152: 497-501. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6739822/ [Accessed April 2022]
Marcella Gates is the executive editor of , the world’s largest digital parenting resource, and is an expert on pregnancy and parenting. As a mother of three, she likes that her professional life is focused on supporting and empowering parents and expectant parents. Gates lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family. All What to Expect content that addresses health or safety is medically reviewed by a team of vetted health professionals. OurMedicalReview Board includes OB/GYNs, pediatricians, infectious disease specialists, doulas, lactation consultants, endocrinologists, fertility specialists and more.
Weeks Pregnant: Symptoms & Baby Development
We believe you should always know the source of the information you read. Learn more about our editorial and medical review policy.
As your second trimester rolls around, your baby is growing fast, and you may also start to notice changes in your own body—so if you haven’t gone shopping for maternity clothes yet, now is the time.
Your baby’s eyes are making small side-to-side movements this week and can detect some light, even though they are still closed.
It is possible that the habit of sucking the thumb of many newborns has already started. At the age of 16 weeks, babies may be able to make sucking movements.
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The baby-to-be’s circulatory system is now up and (starting to) run. In fact, the tiny heart can pump about 25 liters of blood per day.
If you are 16 weeks pregnant, you are in the 4th month of your pregnancy. Only 5 months left! Do you have any questions? Here is more information about how weeks, months and terms are divided during pregnancy.
Your baby now weighs 3 to 4 ounces and is 4 to 5 inches long.
The spine and small muscles in your baby’s back are getting stronger, so she can straighten her head and neck even more.
Months Pregnant: Symptoms, Baby (& Belly) Size And Development
Thanks to those developing facial muscles, your baby can do a little
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