By 23 weeks, you have nearly reached the later part of your second trimester. Now you are in a comfortable
stage of pregnancy and have overcome the initial pregnancy symptoms of morning sickness, vomiting and nausea. You are steadily gaining weight during this period and the stomach has started showing expansion. The baby is also gaining weight during the 23rd week.
The expectant mother must go for regular ante natal check ups to the clinic or the midwife or the general practitioner. This helps to keep a track of the baby’s development and mother’s general health and well being. Many further complications can be avoided with timely treatments and medications. Ante natal classes also help greatly. The expectant mother gets a chance to meet other expectant mothers and share experiences. She also gets tips on child birth and baby care and so on.
The expectant mother must take a nutritious and well balanced diet to ensure healthy development of the baby. A regular exercise regimen with daily walks and light workouts also helps a lot. The mother must take supplements for iron and calcium so that baby has healthy teeth and bones. The mother might experience cramps in the legs during this stage. Some women might also experience bloating.
The expectant mother must try to remain cheerful as this will help in having an enjoyable and safe pregnancy along with a healthy baby. The woman must talk to family and friends for gaining knowledge and experience on handling of babies and child care. She must plan out the forthcoming events of child birth and baby care with her partner. Observe the babies around you and try to pick them up so that it helps you to gain experience of handling babies. Try and visit the hospital along with your partner, so that he is also in the picture regarding baby’s health and development.
Your Symptoms: Indigestion and heartburn are quite common at this point in pregnancy, and they will probably stick around until the birth.
Baby’s Development: Baby is wriggling, kicking, and turning; his sense of movement is now more well-developed as well. His fingernails are now at the base of his nail bed.
Baby’s Size: 26.5 cm, 370 g.
To Do: Babies (and children) are expensive. Work with your partner to create a baby budget. Expenses you should consider are childcare, diapers and wipes, formula or nursing supplies (and baby food in a few months), clothes, healthcare, and toys.
The baby is developing at a steady rate by the 23rd week of pregnancy. The baby’s weight is now slightly more than a pound approximately. The length of the baby from crown to heel or rump is around 29 cms or 11.4 inches approximately. All babies develop at different rates, so these are approximate sizes and should not be taken as standards. The baby resembles a small doll and looks very much like a human. The face and body of the baby at this stage look like that of a newborn child.
The fat deposition is taking place at a very fast rate, but the baby is still looking quite red and wrinkled at this stage. The skin is being produced at faster pace than the fat, so the skin tends to hang loose. The baby is looking red at this stage due to the skin losing transparency and formation of pigment. The baby starts making vigorous movements and punches and kicks the uterine walls. The baby also touches the umbilical cord and own body parts in the womb. The baby may start sucking its thumb. The baby continues to swallow the amniotic fluid which is recycled as urine. The baby takes in additional liquids and sugars from the amniotic fluid as supplements to placental nutrition. The baby’s sense of hearing develops quite well at this stage.
The pancreas has developed well by this period and has started producing insulin. The baby’s lungs are also growing and developing and the baby is getting prepared for breathing. In the 23rd week of pregnancy, baby’s organs, muscles and bones are growing at a steady rate.
Changes With Your Body
At 23 weeks pregnant stage, the uterus of the expectant mother comes up nearly 1.5 inches above the navel. The navel may stick out now due to the stretching of stomach muscles. The expectant mother has steadily gained weight. The approximate weight gain could be around 15 pounds. The stomach has expanded quite noticeably at this stage of pregnancy.
Generally, most women are finished experience early pregnancy symptoms, such as morning sickness, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, pelvic discomfort, cramps, irritability, sleepiness, mood upheavals, implantation bleeding, food cravings and food aversions and so on. Some women may have very severe symptoms while others may have very mild or no symptoms at all. Every pregnancy is unique in itself and should be treated as such.
As there is increase in blood volume in the lower part of the body, the pregnant women have an urge for frequent urination. In case of some expectant mothers, there is increased vaginal discharge. Some women might develop the medical condition of hemorrhoids, where there is bleeding from anus. There might be muscle cramps in the legs of some women at this stage. Some women have Braxton Hicks contractions during this period, generally these are not painful and help in preparing the body for the upcoming event of labor. In some cases, women have bleeding gums.
What to Expect
There are going to be a lot many physical and emotional changes during pregnancy. These changes are temporary and you will revert back to your normal self after child birth. Learn to handle these changes in a positive manner and you will be able to cope with them successfully to the best of your abilities. Adopt a healthier lifestyle with good balanced diet, regular workouts and cheerful disposition. Discuss your plans, hopes and fears with your partner. Take the advice of medical experts, family and friends. This will help you in clearing your doubts and sharing your joy and excitement. Join antenatal classes where you will get tips on dealing with your pregnancy.
Maintain good hygiene and cleanliness during the pregnancy period. Go for regular antenatal checkups to ensure healthy growth and development of the baby. Take care and treat medical conditions like anemia, hemorrhoids, and high blood pressure in a timely manner. Take adequate rest and sleep as this is bound to have a profound effect on your baby’s health. Above all, enjoy your pregnancy. Motherhood is the most delightful and happy state of one’s life. So be positive and enjoy the ride!