What to do when you’re 20 weeks pregnant? We’ll help you answer all your questions about Pregnancy in Week 20.
Your Baby in Week 20
Here comes the first poop!
Your little soldier now weighs about 300 grams and is approximately about 10 inches tall. Up until this week your baby was measured from crown to rump (the hind part of the body). This week onwards your baby will be measured from head to heel. His growth is unbelievable and we are not just talking about his size. As your baby is growing slowly and steadily, he might have taken up much room in the uterus now. Only a few more weeks and he will not be able to pull off the gymnast like poses he has been doing lately.
This week marks another developmental milestone as your baby is now making the first of what will eventually become his first form of excretion. This comes in the form of meconium. Meconium is a sticky and black coloured result of digestion. Since your baby is swallowing more these days his digestive system is also getting a thorough work-out. Meconium is made up of the digestive secretion, dead skin cells and the amniotic fluid that he has been swallowing. It will be stored up in his bowels and he will eventually take a dump once he is born. Some babies are also known to poop in the womb or during delivery.
His still-white hair on the head continues to grow along with his itsy-bitsy nails. Speaking of itsy-bitsy, if you sing “Ba-ba black sheep” and “Twinkle, twinkle little star” to him, he can clearly hear it. As the nose and ears are continuing to form, his five senses have highly heightened too. All parts of your baby’s body are highly developed by now. There are separate and defined chambers of his heart, the brains hemispheres have also formed properly and so have his kidneys.
Week 20 Symptoms
Protruding belly button
Your belly button and the top of uterus are probably at the same plane by now. Well, you can relax, it is going to go back once you deliver.
There is a progressive increase in blood volume during pregnancy, from 6-8 week onwards and this continues till 32-34 weeks. Along with raging hormones, increased blood volume gives way to frequent headaches. There are other reasons for head ache such as fatigue, mood swings, nose congestion, increased appetite etc.
You can place the blame for the swelling on water retention. You may notice that with every hour, the swelling probably becomes worse and you may find evenings difficult to handle. Put your feet up and relax. Your body is just telling you to go easy.
Hair and nail growth
You may notice that your nails are growing more than normal and they are probably softer too. Your hair may be thicker and luscious than usual as well. The reason remains the same – high production of pregnancy hormones. You may also notice hair growth on parts where you have never had them! This goes away within few months after giving birth though.
Your Body in Week 20
Wow! You are half-way through!
Woohoo! Congratulations to you, beautiful lady! You have come so far and crossed the halfway mark. You should be very proud of yourself. Only a few more months and you will be able to hold your little soldier in your arms. The very thought of this must be exciting to you beyond measure.
Weight gain and related changes
You may have put on few kilograms here and there and the top of your uterus is now in the same level as your navel. Your womb is three times bigger than the first time you found out that you were pregnant. Your lower abdomen may start hurting every now and then, but it is nothing to be alarmed about. While at the topic of weight gain, we hope that your diet includes a regular dose of iron and calcium rich food such as lentils, leafy vegetables, lean meat and fortified cereals. Be regular with your vitamin supplements as well.
Bonding with the baby
As your baby can hear now, it is a good time to start talking to your baby. Involve your partner in this bonding time and let the baby recognize both your voices. You could even sing to the baby or play some soothing music. There are all chances that your little one will recognize the tunes once he is out!