17th week of pregnancy - this is the fourth month or 2 trimester
What to Expect at 17 Weeks Pregnant
17th week of pregnancy is the fifth month of your maternity period. This is usually one of the most favorable periods despite the fact that your figure will change significantly - your baby grows up. Let's look in more detail at what awaits you and your baby during this period.
What Happens to a Baby
At week 17 the fetus is actively gaining weight and growing. The average weight of a baby is about 135 g, and the height is about 12 cm. His body is gradually preparing for the birth and stores fat which is responsible for heat retention of your baby. Metabolic disorders and poor mother’s diet can lead to failure in the formation of adipose tissue of the baby.
Despite this the baby’s skin is still very thin and sensitive. Pale cream primal protective lubricant begins to appear. On the head and on the body first hairs start to grow. His face already gets genetically inherent traits.
The eyes of the baby are practically formed and he has already begun to distinguish between sounds and light. Of course the baby still cannot fully analyze the sounds but he is already able to distinguish and remember the mother's voice, he can be very frightened of loud shouting, sharp voice and heavy music. But the baby can be soothed by the voice of mom or dad, quiet soft music or just the sounds of nature. If in the dark to apply light source to a belly, you can feel the baby turn in that direction.
In the same period the fetus begins to produce his own interferon and immunoglobulin, this means that his own immune system starts to operate that can protect it (still not as reliable as the placenta) from the mother's infection during her illness.
Movements of the fetus are sharper, coordinated and active. The baby is actively moving his arms and legs, bends and straightens them, turns, touches his face, and even sucks his finger. These movements can be seen during ultrasound examination of the fetus. It is from this period the woman can feel the first fetal movements. Do not worry much if you are on a 17th week, and fetal movements are still not heard, it depends as well as the size of the tummy whether this is your first pregnancy, what is your weight (more skinny moms feel the movements clearer and earlier), and the individual sensitivity threshold.
Fetal bones become stronger, the beginnings of milk teeth are covered with bone tissue. During this period he actively uses calcium from the mother's organism. In the fetus kidneys are fully formed, now they have their normal position and are involved in metabolism. The adrenal glands also begin to actively operate, producing the hormones needed by the body of the baby. The central nervous and endocrine systems are significantly activated.
The Uterus and Tummy
Your placenta becomes heavier, about (500 g) and increases its density. Due to the growth of your baby the uterus rapidly increases in volume, increases the amount of amniotic fluid and the uterine wall thickens much. Due to the fact that the growth of the uterus changed its direction (it now grows vertically), you may feel some discomfort.
This discomfort is due to the fact that the growing uterus puts pressure on the internal organs (mainly in the intestines), slightly shifting them to the side and upwards. Sometimes this leads to a slight difficulty in advancing food through the esophagus, and as a result is the occurrence of heartburn, feeling of bloating and gases, as well as frequent urination. At this time the first stretch on the sides of the tummy may occur.
Your tummy is noticeably rounded and bulges forward. But do not worry if your tummy is almost not grown, its growth also depends on the location of the fetus (can be at the back wall of the uterus or is located low). The form of your tummy depends also on whether you have the first pregnancy or you already have kids. In primiparous mothers the tummy shape is round with the center of the umbilicus, multiparous may occur more pendulous abdomen slightly off-center.
17 Weeks Pregnant Belly Pictures
The General Condition of the Body and Well-Being
During this period, you have to carefully protect your body. Avoid heavy physical exertion, fatigue, extreme temperatures and pressure (air travel only with the doctor's permission), stuffiness and stressful situations. Treat all the signals of your body with all seriousness because it is working in emergency mode. Not only the load on the heart increases, but also on the kidneys and circulatory system.
You can experience a lot of different sensations due to the fact that you have in your tummy things happening which are very important for you and your baby. The skin on the tummy may become drier and more tightened due to its increase. You like to sleep on your stomach, alas, you'll have to give up on this at the time of pregnancy. Besides that you will be simply uncomfortable to sleep on your stomach, still lying on your stomach will put pressure on the uterus. Also experts do not recommend sleeping on your back, your uterus weight can compress the veins, thus blocking the access of oxygen to your baby. The best for you and your baby if you sleep on your side for convenience, you can put a pillow or a roll between your knees.
During this period, due to the increase of the thyroid gland to produce more hormones, it leads to heart palpitations, fatigue, sweating, and sometimes insomnia. Together with this there is a deficiency of calcium which if neglected leads to seizures. This can be avoided by taking calcium supplements, diversify your diet with foods rich in calcium and not long sunbathing.
By increasing the uterus at this time urination may become more frequent, if you do not feel a burning sensation, pain and discomfort, then everything is fine. Please note that the amount of vaginal discharges will increase, but you have no reason to worry if they do not change their color and odor.
Your weight will change too, 2 to 3.5 kg have to add, but it is the average norm. Weight gain is very individual, it all depends on the physique of the pregnant, heredity, individual characteristics, fetal size and amount of amniotic fluid. Furthermore heartbeat can occur due to an increase of blood vessels in the placenta which are nutrients to the fetus.
Do not be alarmed if a circle around the nipple increases in size, a small bright nodules stand out and on the surface of the breast are visible bluish veins - this means that your breasts are redeveloped for breast-milk production. Sometimes this period may show signs of late toxicity, accompanied by edema, nausea.
Ultrasound and Diagnostic Tests
In this week the doctor prescribes a second screening which will in time reveal pathologies that can lead to complications and even fetal fading. In addition to the screening, blood chemistry is additionally prescribed on the level of human chorionic gonadotropin, analysis of alpha-fetoprotein or AFP (for diagnosing malformations) and free estriol (it shows the overall picture of the baby's health). The analysis results (specific numbers) are assessed comprehensively.
At ultrasound besides the control over: fetal heartbeat and its activity, its size, checking for abnormalities in the development of the uterus, and amniotic fluid state, you can be told (under certain conditions) the child's sex.
17 Weeks Ultrasound Pictures
17 Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound Gender
17 Weeks Ultrasound Boy:
17 Weeks Ultrasound Girl:
17 Weeks Ultrasound Twins
Recommendations on Diet
As mentioned above, in this period the fetus actively consumes calcium from the mother’s organism. Deficiency of this element in the body of the pregnant woman cannot only lead to the wrong (inadequate) development of the fetus, but also to problems with the health (disruptions in the functioning of the parathyroid glands). Therefore it is necessary to increase in the diet the foods containing calcium (mostly calcium is not contained in dairy products, but in almonds, sesame and celery root).
In the diet of a future mum must be present such products as: beef liver, cod liver, seaweed, fish and seafood, seasonal vegetables and fruits, as well as fiber-containing products. I think it makes no sense to remind that a pregnant woman should adhere to certain restrictions: if possible to eliminate from the diet spicy and fatty foods, strong coffee (try replacing with useful chicory or cocoa and milk), sodas (instead drink berry starch drink, dried fruit drink and uzvar). Do not over-indulge in the products that can cause a severe allergic reaction. It is better to eat more often but smaller portions, about five-six times a day.
Sex at 17 Weeks
If there are no medical contraindications, you can have sex without the fear of harm to the baby. After all, if the partners listen to the desires of each other and they are accurate, sex will not only be fun for them but also a benefit to the fetus.
Endorphins released during sex will not only benefit the mother, but also will bring positive emotions to the baby. A massage of the vaginal walls during sex will protect it from ruptures and fissures. Contraindications for sex can be many, the most common ones: threatened miscarriage, hypertonicity of the uterus, urinary infection.
Discharges in this period should be moderate, bright with slight sour smell (they are due to the vital activity of lactic acid bacteria). Be sure to consult your doctor, if the color, smell and intensity of discharges have changed (greenish tinge, expressed putrid odor and curdled texture can be accompanied by itching or painful sensations in the vagina) – it can be a red flag.
Pain at Weeks Pregnancy
You can feel not severe pain in the abdomen (not more intense than the pain during menstruation) due to the increase of the uterus and the adaptation of the organism. The nature of pain can be different. In most cases they do not cause a risk of complications. There may also be pain in the lumbar region and the coccyx, they are also associated with an increase in size of the uterus. If you feel pain you should lie down and relax a bit, if long-term pain persists or its character and intensity changed, you should seek medical advice.
17 Weeks Pregnant: Watch Your Baby's Development
Alarming symptoms or in which cases it is necessary to call immediately for the doctor:
- In the first place vaginal discharges are brown or bloody, regardless of their intensity - it is a reason to call for an ambulance. Greenish, purulent, foamy or curdled vaginal discharges may be a sign not only of a thrush (frequent companion of a pregnant women) but also of more serious urinary infections, such as chlamydia, trichomoniasis and others. These infections are fraught with intrauterine infection of the fetus, the development of various chronic diseases, lesions of the internal organs of the fetus.
- Severe dizziness, accompanied by loss of consciousness, is also a cause for calling for the doctor. Do not ignore the burning and discomfort during urination, it is one of the symptoms of cystitis and pyelonephritis.
- Sudden blurred vision, darkening, spots or double vision, accompanied by a sharp increase in blood pressure or severe headaches, lasting more than 3 hours – these are the pre-eclampsia symptoms. With this there is very often a lack of oxygen and nutrients received by a fetus through the blood, and this leads to disruption of fetal development and even fading of pregnancy.
- If you experience unexplained anxiety, you do not feel fine, it is better to consult a specialist. Since the changes in your body happen fast enough, you cannot always immediately distinguish the normal state of health from incipient disease. Severe nausea and vomiting cannot only be repeated signs of toxicity but also be a symptom of more serious disease.
- Severe pain in the back and lower abdomen - do not wait until they pass, this may not happen. Remember, you are responsible not only for yourself but also for your baby, immediately call to the doctor or call the ambulance.
- Various viral and infectious diseases, endured on the legs or simply not fully cured, may cause fading of pregnancy. If you notice signs of severe edema, it is not necessary to delay the next visit to the doctor.
Useful Pieces of Advice
- It is unacceptable without a doctor's prescription to take vitamins, not to mention the medications.
- To get rid of heartburn you can drink half an hour before a meal a heated mineral water without gas (about 100 ml), decoction of flax seed, oatmeal and a jelly help very good, you can still have a drink in the morning on an empty stomach half a glass of juice from fresh potatoes. Do not take soda to get rid of heartburn, soda contributes to excessive formation of gases which add discomfort and only increase heartburn.
- Try to walk in the fresh air, it promotes blood circulation and oxygen saturation. Sunbathing can be taken, but in very limited quantities, and in the morning, they saturate the body with vitamin D. But in the great heat, stuffiness, and since 11-00, it is not recommended to be in direct sunlight.
- It is advisable to stay away from smoking areas, even passive smoking can cause considerable damage to your body and adversely affect fetal development.
- To get rid of bleeding gums (it arises due to a significant increase in blood volume in the body for future moms) use mouthwash or infusion of herbs (for example: from the leaves of walnut or linden blossom). If you have insomnia you can drink tea with mint or lemon balm.
- To prevent the appearance of stretch marks or reduce their number, you can use special creams for stretch marks, just nourishing creams and eating food with high content of vitamin E.
This period is very important for the mother and baby. It is now beginning to establish a two-way communication between the mother and her baby. You have to analyze your feelings and listen to your baby. Sing him songs, read stories, listen to classical music, or the sounds of nature, and just talk to him. Try to protect yourself and him from the negative feelings and emotions. After all, pregnancy is the most beautiful thing that can happen to a woman, appreciate every moment.
Pregnancy With Twins at 17 Weeks
When pregnancy with twins the belly becomes noticeable already in the term of 17 weeks. This creates certain inconveniences. You've been tossing and turning at night, trying to find a comfortable position, it is still difficult for you to move actively. Try to create for yourself the most comfortable conditions. Acquire pillows - you can underlay them under your back to relieve the load on the spine. Get used to sleep on the left side - it improves blood flow to the placenta.
At 17 weeks, the fundus is located just on the level of the umbilicus. At this time at many pregnant women dark stripe on the midline of the abdomen becomes visible. Do not be afraid, after the birth it will not stay. Your figure is changing under the influence of hormones, the breast increases. The appearance of stretch marks is now more likely. To avoid this, buy lingerie for pregnant women, and do not forget to use special creams for stretch marks every day.
In the second trimester appetite increases, and it will become more difficult for you to take care of yourself. Do not overeat, eat only healthy and delicious food, useful for your babies. Remember that mothers of twins are gaining weight faster than women pregnant with one baby.
Your babies weigh about 100 grams and their body length is only 12 cm. They can already hear the different sounds. Now is the best time to talk with your twins. Tell them stories, sing songs, read books out loud - even in utero let the babies get used to your voice. And do not forget about the courses of preparation for childbirth!