With the 23rd week, you are nearing the halfway mark of your pregnancy. By now your baby has developed and from this point onwards is just going to grow steadily. While your body continues to prepare and provide for the baby, the baby is also slowly getting ready for the outside world in its own little ways. Let’s dive into what week 23 of pregnancy has in store for you.
Your growing bump, steady weight gain, increased blood flow and hormone levels, together, are likely to cause you backache and swelling in the feet. You may also experience bloating as a result of water retention. Varicose veins will continue to be a prominent feature on your hands and feet over the next months.
A lot of pregnant women find their sleep patterns affected due to the backache as well as anxiety over pregnancy and the baby’s well-being.
You will continue to experience mild contractions as you did in the past week. This is just your uterus practicing to deliver the baby.
By this point, the uterus is sitting right on top of your bladder. As a result, you will experience fluid leaking out of your vagina. Many women tend to confuse urine with the amniotic fluid. An easy way to distinguish between the two is to check for odours – amniotic fluid is clear and odourless, and will either gush out of your body or leak in a steady trickle. If the leaking fluid is, in fact, the amniotic fluid, call your gynaecologist immediately.
Your baby has grown to approximately 11 inches in length and weighs about 500 grams. The baby is finally at a stage where it looks more like a cute little new-born baby and less like a foetus. From now on, slowly and steadily, its body will start bulking up with fat tissues.
By now it’s highly likely that your baby has grown familiar to the sounds in its surroundings – such as your voice or a favourite song you play on loud every day!
The baby’s movements and reflexes are developing. This means that it is now easily startled by sudden movements and noises, such as sneezing.
Focus on steady weight gain through healthy means, so your body is equipped to carry and support a fast-growing baby. Include fibrous foods in your diet. Avoid processed foods, junk foods, artificial sugars, greasy spicy food and foods from sources you don’t trust.
Just because your bladder is under extra-pressure, resulting in frequent urges to pee, don’t skip drinking water regularly. Hydration will provide you relief from sore muscles, varicose veins and also improve blood supply.
Although your belly has grown significantly, there’s still plenty of room for exercise. Keep doing mild workouts – it’ll help your body as well as mind. For your varicose veins, avoid sitting or standing in the same position for too long. Stretch your legs regularly and take short walks to ease the veins and stimulate blood circulation.
If your back hurts too much, watch your posture and where you sit. Use an adjustable chair along with cushions for support and comfort.
Invest in comfortable footwear, support stockings and maternity clothes that are light and breathable.
Now that your bump is very visible and you’re gaining weight, you’ll hear a lot of insights from well-meaning relatives and friends about your body. They might say you’re either too large or too tiny for this stage of pregnancy. It’s important to not take these too personally, let it worry you or affect your morale. looks different on different women. And as long as your doctor says you’re healthy, that’s all you need!
Get as much rest as you can. Avoid putting too much strain on your back and on your feet. Stay hydrated, get a full 8 hours of sleep and try not to get too stressed about anything!
Dads-to-be, make sure the mommy is comfortable at all times, is eating well and taking her nutritional supplements on time.
Accompany her for check-ups, and feel free to pamper her. She needs it!
Make sure she’s not on her toes too much and gets adequate rest. Check to make sure the mattress is not lumpy and the pillows provide sufficient support.
Talk to your baby. This is a good time for you and your partner to bond with each other and the baby!
Have any questions and concerns regarding your pregnancy? Ask us in the comments below! Know more about being 24 weeks of pregnancy here.