You’re halfway down the stretch this second-trimester pregnancy in your amazing pregnancy journey. The worst of morning sickness, nausea, and fears of miscarriage are over. This is the easy period, so you can really relax and prepare for the third trimester of pregnancy–the most exciting, and many moms say, the hardest of the pregnancy trimesters. Find out what you need to know about the second trimester to make the most of your pregnancy downtime.
Second Trimester Pregnancy | What to Expect
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Second Trimester Symptoms
The second trimester of pregnancy starts during the 14th week of gestation. It continues until week 27 when your body shifts into the third trimester. You want to learn what to expect in 2nd trimester pregnancy week by week to ensure you’re ready for the upcoming changes to your body.
You’ll notice relief from the unpleasant pregnancy symptoms associated with the first trimester. It’s also the time when you’ll start showing and the growth of your unborn child is noticeable. You want to learn what to eat during second-trimester pregnancy. You also want to prepare for the changes to your body from your baby’s growth and development.
1. Reduced Morning Sickness
A key advantage of the second trimester of pregnancy is the impact on your diet. You’ll no longer have the morning sickness associated with early pregnancy. You may notice foods become more appealing. During the second trimester, you won’t have the same discomfort associated with strong smells.
2. Increased Energy Levels
The fatigue and low energy associated with first-trimester pregnancy start to fade. You will have a higher level of energy during the second trimester of your pregnancy. The increased energy levels allow you to prepare for the upcoming birth of your child. It also gives you a break from the fatigue and brain fog interfered with normal activities. Although you may feel energetic, discuss any exercise routines with a medical professional. A doctor checks your health to avoid risks and potential concerns.
3. Pregnancy Pains
The second-trimester pregnancy pains develop as you move forward through the pregnancy. Backaches and headaches are common during the second trimester. Changes stem from the growth of your child. You will also notice heartburn and constipation.
Some women develop varicose veins during this time. Spider veins and varicose veins often fade after the birth of your child. Varicose veins reduce blood flow to your legs and extremities. It may cause some discomfort throughout the pregnancy.
When the pain impacts your life, discuss your options with a medical professional. Do not take any over-the-counter medications or pain relievers until you talk to a doctor.
4. The Growth of Your Child
The second trimester of pregnancy marks a significant development in your baby. An unborn child weighs roughly one pound by the 18th week of pregnancy. He or she will yawn and hiccup which you may see on an ultrasound. You’ll feel a baby’s movements by the 21st week. When your child stretches, kicks, or coordinates his or her limbs, you’ll feel the movement.
A child starts gaining weight toward the end of the second-trimester pregnancy. When you finish the second trimester, your child’s weight will double. By 23 weeks, your baby will weigh around two pounds. A baby starts sucking and swallowing during this time. The motion prepares a child for birth and digestion.
When you reach the 22nd week of pregnancy, your baby’s senses start developing. The eyes and ears shift to the correct position. The result is your baby starts developing a sense of hearing, smell, and taste. Your child will be able to taste the foods you eat, so you want to focus on a healthy diet plan. The taste of the foods you eat will carry forward into your child’s preferences after birth.
The final change in your child which you can expect is the development of the brain. Your unborn infant’s brain will begin regulating his or her heartbeat by 17 weeks. The heart develops capillaries by the 25th week of pregnancy. The capillaries will start carrying oxygenated blood through your baby’s body after birth.
What to Eat During the Second Trimester of Pregnancy
Determining what to eat during the second trimester of pregnancy seems challenging. Your diet during pregnancy impacts a child’s preferences for foods after birth. You want to eat a healthy diet during your second trimester of pregnancy.
Focus on healthy fruits and vegetables. Opt for whole grains and limit grains with gluten. For example, eat gluten-free rolled oats, quinoa or rice instead of wheat. Focus on lean sources of protein, like chicken or beans while limiting red meat. Limit processed foods like chips, candies, and cookies.
Follow the second-trimester pregnancy development in this video from Healthy Women Infants and Children:
The second-trimester pregnancy is an exciting time. You start to show and will see significant changes in your unborn child. Expect some discomfort and pain during the second trimester. Enjoy the changes in your body as your baby grows. Work with your doctor to develop a plan for your health with proper diet and exercise.
What symptoms are you noticing in your second-trimester pregnancy? Tell us all about in the comments section below!