What’s Happening with Your Body
You’re almost done with your second trimester! You may have noticed swelling in your face, hands, feet, and ankles. This swelling, called edema, happens as your body retains fluid to keep your blood volume high. With more blood flowing, your vessels are forced closer to the skin’s surface. Your tender gums may bleed when you brush your teeth. Drink plenty of water and try moderate exercise such as walking to ease swelling and help your circulation. Increased blood flow may also cause swelling inside your nasal passages, leading to congestion.
Your Baby This Week
Your baby is getting chubby. She weighs about 32 ounces (1 kg) and measures more than 9 inches (23 cm) in length. You’re continuing to grow, too, which is a sign that you’re both healthy!
A pattern similar to life outside the womb is starting to develop. You may notice a distinct wake-sleep cycle, where periods of activity alternate with quiet times on a regular basis. Your baby’s senses are coming into full bloom. She can’t see yet, but she can hear, taste and feel, and her brainwave patterns are similar to those of a newborn. If your health care provider listens your baby’s heartbeat now, he or she may notice a skipped beat, which is a condition known as an arrhythmia. Often this is normal and disappears as the heart matures. If it’s still present when you are ready to deliver, a fetal heart rate monitor can detect any signs of distress.