17 weeks and 2 days pregnant
Here, the baby’s legs are in the typical crossed-legs position. The right arm is on the right side of the image. The limbs and umbilical cord appear to be in a tangle, but the umbilical cord is filled with a jelly-like fluid and does not become compressed.
The tiny embryo was once dwarfed by the placenta but now your baby has outgrown it and will continue to do so.
In the early stages of pregnancy, the placenta grew at a far greater rate than your baby. Your baby has now caught up and from now on will be larger than the placenta.
The structure of the placenta will change over the course of the next few weeks as the second wave of cells move into the spiral arteries in the uterus. The placenta is currently at its thickest but as it continues to grow, albeit at a slower rate for a time, it thins out.
Your baby’s more rapid growth means that at 140g (5oz) she is now heavier than the placenta and by the time she is full term she will be six or seven times its weight. Nutrients supplied across the placenta provide your baby with energy for growth, but growth is in part regulated by her own insulin production and insulin-like growth factors.
Although your baby has relatively high concentrations of growth hormone, which is responsible for growth after birth, this does not seem to play an important role in her growth during pregnancy.
The baby is in a typical position, curled with knees and elbows bent. The blood vessels show up clearly as the skin is still quite transparent. The ear is well developed at this stage.
If you’re battling with the burning sensation and sour taste of heartburn, try these solutions:
Eat smaller meals, and ensure you chew your food well
Avoid foods that aggravate your symptoms, such as spicy, rich, and fatty dishes
Don’t smoke or drink alcohol
Drink peppermint, ginger, and camomile tea
Munch raw garlic
Chew gum after eating
Remain upright after meals; bending can increase discomfort
Don’t eat late at night
Raise the head of your bed by 15cm (6in) and lie on your left side.
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