Pregnancy
22 weeks pregnant

You could be feeling a little off-balance, both physically and emotionally

Being pregnant can have all kinds of unexpected effects. There will probably be days when you just don’t feel in control of your emotions and they get the better of you, making you cry for no reason. Or your body feels clumsy and unco-ordinated, and you keep walking into the furniture. Just chat to some other mums-to-be and you’ll find that these side-effects are all a normal part of the pregnancy experience!

 

1.As your abdominal organs become ever more compressed, you may suffer from frequent digestive disturbances, such as heartburn or trapped wind.

 

 

2.The inner ear organs have matured enough to send nerve signals to the brain. Soon, the baby will start responding to many more sounds.

 

 

3.At 23 weeks the average crown to heel length is 28.9cm (11.4in) and the average weight is 501g (1.1lb).

 

 

4.Kicks are becoming quite strong and there’s no mistaking your baby’s movements.

 

 

5.The umbilical cord may be held in your baby’s hands as he floats in the amniotic cavity.

 

Don’t be surprised if people have started noticing your belly. You’ll notice that your baby bump is now visible as your uterus is growing day-by-day. Your baby should now be approximately 11-14 inches tall and weigh around 450 gms.

What are you about to experience?

By this week your total weight gain would be within 5-6 kg. Since your uterus is now putting pressure on your bladder, it can sometimes cause you to leak in your underwear. Embarrassing? Don’t be...it is quite a common. You could use a panty liner, change your underwear frequently, or simply ask your doctor to teach you some Kegel’s exercises (Kegel exercises strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which support the uterus, bladder, small intestine and rectum). But keep a tab on the type of fluid that leaks. It could also be the amniotic fluid. (Amniotic fluid is a clear, slightly yellowish liquid that surrounds the fetus during pregnancy. It is contained in the amniotic sac. It is a protective layer and helps in bone growth and lung development). There is a way to differentiate between urine and amniotic fluid. AF is odourless whereas urine has a slight odour. If it’s AF, it’s time for you to meet your doctor.

Your baby’s development

Your baby is continuing to gain weight. In the next few weeks, your baby’s lanugo, (Lanugo is the first hair to be produced by the foetal hair follicles, and it usually appears on the fetus at about 5 months of gestation) may be seen in your ultrasound. Lanugo is normally shed before birth at around 7 or 8 months of gestation.

Changes in you

Most body changes are considered normal. Even swelling of feet or hands is considered normal. But you still need to keep a tab on the intensity of swelling and how soon, in pregnancy, did the swelling happen.

Did your doctor tell you about Preeclampsia? In this condition, blood vessels contract resulting in high BP. This in turn results in a reduced blood flow that can affect your organs like liver, kidneys, and brain. Preeclampsia is often precluded by gestational hypertension. While high blood pressure during pregnancy does not necessarily indicate preeclampsia, it may be a sign of other problem. You may keep a tab and meet your doctor if you notice sudden swelling in your legs, blurred vision, severe headaches, abdominal pain, or if you are urinating very infrequently.

Lifestyle Changes:

Keeping in mind about the seriousness of swelling, we suggest that while you are at work or at home when lying down keep your feet elevated, to avoid swelling.

-You may practice Yoga under the supervision of an expert. The expert may start you on breathing exercises.

-Drink enough water as it helps you avoid headaches, swelling, and urinary infections.

Nutrition for you

Don’t fear the weight gain. You don’t need to go on a diet during pregnancy. You just need to eat a variety of different foods to ensure you get all the nutrients that you and your baby need.

  1. Plenty of Fluids. Due to the uterus pressing your bladder you may want to visit the loo often. But this doesn’t have to reduce the intake of fluids. Drink adequate liquids in the form of water, fresh vegetable juices, coconut water, and milk. Avoid any type of packaged drinks since they are low in nutrition and high in sugar.
  2. Go Nuts. Did you know almonds and walnuts help in your baby’s brain development? If your doctor mentioned the word DHA, it is because DHA is the primary structural component of your baby’s brain and other important organs and is important for your baby’s brain development.

Common worries

Are you worried about the coming months? It’s going to be okay. There are some issues you may face but with a bit of precaution they can be handled easily.

  • Pregnancy insomnia: One is not able to sleep properly in this condition. Try sliding a pillow between your legs while you lie down and sleep on your side. Or meditating before you actually sleep. De-stress yourself by reading a book or listening to your favourite music. It is also believed that listening to a spiritual discourse, praying, or chanting before bedtime, goes a long way in helping you get sound sleep.  
  • Weight gain: If you have gained more than 5-6 kg, you may want to consult your doctor. Avoid outside food, especially junk food such as packaged food or instant foods.

What do the experts suggest?

“Expectant moms usually come to us with a worrying sign, showing us a dark line which runs vertically from their belly button to their pubic area. It’s nothing to worry. This is known as Linea Nigra which is caused due to pregnancy hormones that lead to skin discolouration. It goes away once the baby is born.”

Dr Sangeeta Malhotra

Medical Superintendent, CGHS Maternity and Gynea Hospital

R. K. Puram, Delhi

What do some of the moms say?                                

While, it may so happen that negative thoughts may find their way at times, it doesn’t mean you’ll not make a good mother. Trust yourself. Take inspiration from fellow moms.

“I suffered from a lot of sleepless nights. I eventually spoke to my aunt who suggested I should listen to some soothing music before sleeping. This really helped me sleep better. Hope this tip helps other mothers too!” exclaims Kriti Malhotra, a new mom.

Shubhi, 27, an expecting mother says, “I am sick of going to the bathroom every hour! I know that once the baby arrives, the baby’s joy will more than make up for all this effort.”                                                                                                             

Seasonal Pregnancy Care

Every season has its pros and cons. As a mom to be, you need to ensure that this season goes smoothly for you and the baby.

Summer: Always keep a bottle of water by your side. Staying hydrated helps keep up your blood volume, renews amniotic fluid, and also helps increase milk production during lactation.

Monsoon: Avoid drinking water anywhere outside. This season is prone to many water borne diseases such as gastroenteritis and typhoid. Also, chances of accidents due to slipping on water are high. Therefore wear anti-slip footwear.  

Winter: Common cold and flu are very common in this weather. If anyone around you in your home or at work place is suffering from cold or viral, please maintain a distance. Also, do not take any medication without consulting your doctor.

 

 

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