You have reached week 18 and are not far from being half way through your pregnancy!
Time to switch things up. Starting around 18 weeks pregnant you should begin to sleep on your side instead of your back. That’s because baby is getting big enough to press against large veins in the back of your abdomen which can reduce the amount of blood going to your heart, making you feel lightheaded or worse, lowering your blood pressure.
How big is my baby at 18 weeks pregnant?
By week 18 your baby will be about 14.2cm long, weighing nearly 190g and similar to a large onion in size.
Their nerves will now be forming a protective covering of myelin which is vital for their nervous system to develop and function properly after birth.
Your baby is using your tummy as quite a little activity gym by week 18 and doing a whole lot of kicking, rolling and tumbling around. Now that they have developed a grip, they will be grasping hold of their umbilical cord too – a built-in play thing! If you are having a little girl, she will already be developing eggs in her ovaries at 18 weeks – how amazing is that? Your baby’s genitals will now be formed and in place, and if you’re having a boy they might be visible during your week 20 anomaly scan, although it might not be possible depending on your baby’s positioning.
18 Weeks Pregnant Is How Many Months?
If you’re 18 weeks pregnant, you’re in month 5 of your pregnancy. Only 4 months left to go!
18 WEEKS PREGNANT SYMPTOMS
Swollen feet and/or hands:
Swelling can be an annoying pregnancy symptom. It’s nothing to worry about as long as the swelling isn’t sudden or severe. If it is, tell your doctor right away.
Although every pregnancy is different, from around now, you will start to feel your baby move. Timings can be different for every mum-to-be so if you haven’t felt anything yet, don’t panic. In the early days your baby’s kicks don’t feel like kicks as such, many describe them as feeling like bubbles initially and they get stronger as time goes on, forming into kicks, punches, swooshes, flips and turns in time. Your unborn baby moving is an important sign that all is well. There are no set numbers of movements a woman should feel, but it is important that you know what feels normal for your baby.
Those pesky pregnancy hormones cause mucous membranes in your body (including those in your mouth) to swell, which can mean inflamed, irritated and bleeding gums. It’s important to continue flossing and brushing regularly to prevent periodontal disease, but try not to be too aggressive in your technique since that can further aggravate sensitive gums.
Your mind is working overtime and you’re getting more and more uncomfortable. This can wreak havoc on your ability to catch the sleeps you need.
If the appearance of a new stretch mark has got you feeling down, here’s an activity that may cheer you up – get your partner to rub moisturizing lotion over your belly. And maybe even get him to give you a massage while he’s at it!
Tips For You This Week
- With pregnancy often comes low blood pressure. To help stave off dizziness, always move from a lying or sitting position to standing slowly.
- There will be an increase in appetite – and specific food cravings about now. Make yours count by choosing meals and snacks that are rich in nutrients instead of empty calories.
- From now on, when you do lie down, it’s best to lie on your side – or at least partly tilted to one side. Try placing a pillow behind you or under your hip or upper leg for comfort.
- If you haven’t already had a second-trimester ultrasound, you’ll probably have one soon. Now’s a great time to interview potential pediatricians. Ask a lot of questions on topics like appointment availability, hospital affiliations, vaccines and circumcision.