20 week pregnancy is an important milestone, most notably because your half way there! If you’ve been able to find out your baby’s gender, you’re probably juggling with baby names in order to find the best one. You can even now head out shopping for either boy or girl clothes, and you may want to start finalizing your baby registry. Your baby when your 20 weeks pregnant is as big as a banana, and has still a little growing to do, but is overall off to a good start.
You’re probably on cloud nine at the moment given your high sex drive and energy. But it wouldn’t be a normal pregnancy if there weren’t symptoms involved, and unfortunately week 20 is time for the not-so-fun stuff such as leg cramps, heartburn and swelling.
Performing regular exercises along with drinking plenty of water could provide some relief.
This is one of those symptoms that you will probably experience from the early weeks of your pregnancy. It is your body’s way of preventing bacteria, but keep your OB in the loop if the color of the discharge is green, yellow or foul smelling.
Remember your baby is also depending on your digestive system, so you may at times experience tummy troubles. Avoid eating spicy foods and those that can cause an upset stomach.
This is in most cases no reason for concern unless of course it is severe. Mild swelling is okay and will subside after delivery.
Use the surge in energy while it lasts, because you may experience a spell of fatigue in the third trimester.
You may feel out of breath at times, and this is mainly caused by your expanding uterus pressing against your lungs.
Expect to gain a pound or two and ensure you are getting a good dose of iron—an important mineral that is used to produce hemoglobin.
This is caused mostly by the increase in estrogen in your body. Adding to this, this hormone contributes to swelling of the mucus membranes in the nose causing you to generate more mucus.
There are a few different things that are going to happen starting around week 20 of your pregnancy such as a fundal height measurement, which will be done by your OB at each prenatal visit moving forward. This is the measurement taken from the pubic bone to the top of your uterus, and should be equivalent to your week of pregnancy or one or two centimeters more or less. So for example, your belly when you’re 20 weeks pregnant should measure roughly between 18-22 centimeters, and will continue to increase accordingly each week
A fundal height that is lower or higher than the aforementioned numbers could be the sign of a pregnancy condition such as a breech baby or gestational diabetes, and further testing may be necessary. Your doctor in most cases will not measure your fundal height if you’re pregnant with twins or multiples, because it is not easy to determine what it should be for moms carrying more than one baby. In this case, your OB will switch focus from fundal height to your weight gain, which if you’re pregnant with twins should be 35-45lbs total during pregnancy.
20 weeks is around the time when you will be due for your mid-pregnancy ultrasound, considering it happens generally between week 18 and 22. This is a detailed test that will give you a clear image of your baby’s body parts such as kidneys, brain and chambers of the heart. The goal of the ultrasound technician is to check to ensure all the parts are working properly, and that your baby’s growth is normal.
If you’re pregnant with twins, the technician will check to ensure whether both the babies heads are roughly the same size, and if there are any major differences, more measurements will be taken to rule out any growth problems. Adding to this, your OB at your mid-pregnancy ultrasound will be able to tell you the gender of your baby, so let them know if you want in on the big secret.
By week 20, your baby’s organs are moving to their respective places such as its kidneys are getting into their bean shape, and ovaries for girls and testes for boys are in the right position. Furthermore, your little munchkin’s teeth are beginning to take shape, and he/she is even able to swallow. Your baby is also producing a black, sticky by-product of digestion known as meconium, which is somewhat a gooey substance that accumulates in their bowels.
Besides the diving, rolling and kicking, you may also feel some rhythmic jerking, but this is totally normal. And your baby is growing a spurt of hair, which is the real deal and not lanugo as seen in the previous weeks of pregnancy. This initial hair growth will fall out roughly two weeks after birth, and will be replaced with fresh growth. The size of your baby when you’re 20 weeks pregnant is approximately 10.08 inches and 10.58 ounces, so about the length of a large banana.
Have your mid-pregnancy ultrasound
Celebrate – you’re half way there!
Get to know whether you’re having a boy or girl
Go maternity wear shopping
Figure out when to start your maternity leave