This week, your baby is as big as an endive.
Baby swallows amniotic fluid while swimming in your belly and can taste it. If you eat well and eat lots of fresh fruits and vegtables, your baby will eat well too!
Airlines generally only allow pregnant women to fly if they are less than 36 weeks pregnant. If you have a low risk pregnancy, now is the perfect time to travel. Please consult your obstetrician for advice!
Babies at this stage can suck, grasp, and even burp. Their taste buds are also well developed so they can taste the food you are eating when they swallow the amniotic fluid.
Your baby is getting stronger every day! Cartilage is turning into bone, and the limbs are now coordinated thanks to neurons that have connected to control them.
As your baby grows, his or her arms and legs start to look in proportion to the rest of the body. At the same time, soft hair and eyebrows start to grow on the head.
At 21 weeks pregnant, you're now in the middle of your second trimester. Most of the discomfort and early pregnancy symptoms have diminished, but even with a more comfortable second trimester, there are still some symptoms to be aware of. Be sure to keep an eye out for any new or worsening symptoms, and talk to your midwife or obstetrician if anything seems off.
As your baby continues to grow, your skin isn't able to keep up with the rate of growth. This can cause the connective tissue in the dermis to break, forming stretch marks. The timing of when stretch marks appear varies from person to person, but they're usually seen during the second or third trimester. They're more common on the abdomen and breasts, but can also appear on the buttocks and thighs. Stretch marks can be managed by careful application of moisturisers but always consult your obstetrician or midwife first a some products may contain ingredients that can be harmful to you and your baby, such as retinol.
Pregnancy can put a lot of pressure on your legs, and an enlarged uterus can compress the veins in your pelvis, which can lead to varicose veins in your legs and vulva.
Leg cramps during pregnancy are often experienced by expectant mothers during periods of rest or sleep. They can be caused by a lack of calcium and are usually resolved by consuming foods or drinks that are high in calcium or taking a calcium supplement.
Pregnant women’s progesterone levels remain high, which can lead to worsening constipation. The best way to avoid any adverse effects is by consulting a doctor before taking any medication or laxatives. Pregnant women should also remember to stay hydrated and eat foods that are high in fiber.
If you and your baby are healthy, the second trimester is a great time to travel. Some airlines have restrictions on the number of weeks of pregnancy, and they generally only accept pregnant women who are under 36 weeks pregnant to board the plane. Medical certificates may be required from the 28th to 36th week of pregnancy, depending on the guidelines of individual airlines. Please consult your airline and travel insurance company, as well as your attending obstetrician, before departure. It's always a good idea to be prepared, especially when it comes to something as important as your health. Pregnant women should put together medical records and safe medicine kits before embarking on their journey, so that they can feel more at ease and have peace of mind during pregnancy.
Exercising during pregnancy does not increase the risk of low birth weight, preterm birth or miscarriage. However, it is important to discuss with your Women's Health Physiotherapist or Obstetrician which exercises are safe to do during pregnancy.