Onset of the Second Trimester
A lot of exciting milestones occur in this month. The baby’s face and heart are fully formed, thought the lungs are still developing. Fetus is grown upto 3 inches in size,almost a size of a pear. Hair begins to grow. The limbs of the baby are formed. The backbone of the little one is becoming more stronger. The skin of the baby is translucent, all the blood vessels under the skin are visible. Baby also starts hearing at this stage .
A lot of food cravings for the mother also starts.An expected mother tends to crave pickles, icecreams, infact sometimes non food items like chalk or dust too, weird but true for some. Stretch marks start to appear on your belly, breasts or thighs. Keeping your skin moisturised can help reduce irritation and itchiness. These marks often fade over time after the delivery.
Some mothers to be also experience new symptoms like heartburns.However mood swings or depression occurs much less during the second phase.
This month, you may experience tightening of clothes, the waistline starts disappearing. You also start feeling the baby movements called “quickening”. The pregnancy starts feeling real to you.
An expected mother experiences continuous breast growth. The breasts become sensitive and tender. Due to hormonal increase in the blood flow, the mucuos membranes of your nose starts swelling causing nasal congestion.
Some ladies also experience painful vericose veins due to growing uterus which compresses the blood vessels.
A mother’s diet plays an important role now. As the baby is growing, it needs more nutrition and vitamins and minerals rich food. A regular exercise like yoga or walk is also important as mobility helps during delivery. Ample amount of sleep around 7 to 8 hours is a must.
Too much of caffeine should not be taken. Try eating clean and properly cooked food.Dont drink alcohol as the foetus can develop Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) .Do not smoke as it can lead to disabilities in the baby. Iron, calcium and folic acid are extremely important for a pregnant women. Supplements like Vitamin D can be included. A physical check up such as Vagina, breasts and abdomen is necessary. A scan to monitor the foetal development is required. A Doppler ultrasound to check baby’s heart rate is conducted. An expected mother’s urine test is also conducted for sugar or protein detection. The AFP (Alpha- fetoprotein) test for neural defect is given in week 16. Amniocentesis test for abnirmal chromosomes may be offered too.
However a few signs to watch out for during this month includes
• bleeding, like menstrual bleeding which can be a sign of ectopic pregnancy or miscarriage.
• Severe nausea or vomiting
• experiencing contractions
• If the water breaks
• if there is continuous abdominal pain
• if there is persistent fever or cold and cough
The takeaway for this month is to sit back and soak up all the good stuff pregnancy has to offer to an expected mother, less nausea, more energy, a cute little baby bump, shopping for maternity clothes,baby movements, satisfying your cravings.
This is also a great time to inculcate Garbh Sanskar. It is said to be a very effective way to give birth to a well cultured, majestic, healthy, calm and a beautiful child. There are a lot of programmes, classes,online sessions and videos available these days .
All in all, enjoying every moment of this month is a must