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The Second Trimester of Pregnancy Week 13 to 26

The Second Trimester of Pregnancy – Week 13 to 26

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You may find that the second trimester is the most enjoyable physically and emotionally. Most of the early pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness and fatigue have gone away, and your pregnancy hormones are stabilizing, so you aren’t feeling as moody or irritable. At the end of this trimester, you’ll be able to feel your baby moving inside you. He or she will be almost two pounds and up to 13 inches long by the end of the 26th week.

Your baby’s major organs – the heart, kidneys and lungs – are forming during this time. The baby is also starting to look more human, with the development of fingers and toes, eyelashes and eyebrows.

In this trimester you will start to notice your abdomen expanding, as your uterus shifts position and the baby continues to grow. You can expect to gain about one pound each week, although each woman is different. As your body grows, you might feel aches and pains in your groin, back and legs. Stretch marks can begin to appear on your abdomen and breasts.

You might notice you have a lot more energy during the second part of your pregnancy, and your appetite increases. You may start having cravings for strange foods or feeling nauseated by some tastes or smells. You need to be consuming 2500 calories each day, and these should come from healthy sources rather than fried or sugary foods. You should be taking a prenatal vitamin each day, which will help you and your baby get the nutrients you need for the pregnancy.

For many women, the second trimester can mean skin changes such as “pregnancy mask,” spider veins on the face, and itchy, dry skin. While the spider veins and pregnancy mask won’t go away until after your baby is born, you can ease the discomfort of dry skin with lotion.

Your caregiver will probably schedule an ultrasound to check the baby’s growth, and to determine the sex if you wish. At this point, you will have the option of screening tests that will recognize certain genetic defects. An amniocentesis is recommended for women over 35, and involves inserting a thin needle through the abdomen to take a sample of the amniotic fluid. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of genetic testing to decide if it’s right for you and your partner.

 


 
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