Baby Is Sucking His Thumb
You’re at the halfway mark of your pregnancy. Even as you’re relieved of bothersome pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness and tiredness, new ones begin to crop up. With the belly growing rapidly and adding to your weight, you’ll find your gait getting clumsy and finding a comfortable sleeping position. Even regular activities like sitting and standing may take extra effort.
Your baby at week 21
Your baby is now about the size of a carrot measuring 10.5 inches in length (from crown to ankle) and weighing approximately 360 gm. If you’re carrying twins, the babies will be slightly smaller – each measuring 10 inches long.
Your baby’s internal organs continue to mature and develop, while the overall growth rate itself has slowed down. The heart beat has now become stronger and is loud enough to be heard through a stethoscope.
Development highlights at week 21
- Baby continues to swallow and suck.
- Baby’s senses are developing daily. Taste buds have started to form. In fact, your baby can now taste the amniotic fluid. So while deriving nutrition, your baby is simultaneously practicing swallowing.
- Brain and nerve endings are formed enough so that the foetus can feel touch.
- Your baby may experiment with this sense of touch by stroking his or her face or sucking on a thumb, as well as feeling other body parts and seeing how they move.
- The bone marrow takes over the job of producing blood cells from the liver and spleen.
- Eyelashes and eyebrows are developing. However the eyelids remain closed to prevent baby from poking himself in the eyes.
- The arms and legs are finally in proportion, so the movements also have become more co-ordinated, with punches and kicks becoming more intense.
- The reproductive system is continuing to develop. In boys, the testes have begun to descend from the abdomen, and in girls, the uterus and ovaries are in place and the vagina is developed.
Pregnancy Symptoms at week 21
This week you may find yourself battling with a new set of challenges. The pregnancy hormone which aids your baby growth is also constantly altering your body structure. This could cause some amount of inconvenience and discomfort. The best way to deal with these niggling problems is to take it in your stride and enjoy every moment.
- Your uterus has moved up considerably and is about ½ inch above your belly button.
- Its normal for your belly button to be pushed out
- Your appetite continues to grow at an unstoppable pace, and there’s nothing you can do about it. The way to tackle this is to be careful about your diet and make healthy choices
- The breasts may start secreting a yellowish fluid called colostrum. It’s a sign that your body is preparing for breastfeeding
- Leg cramps and other nagging pains are normal at this stage. It’s time to put up your feet and sit, say’ hello’ to flats and get into comfortable clothing.
- The expanding uterus continues to cause heartburn
- Braxton Hicks contractions continue to increase in frequency
- Darkening of the skin can cause ugly patches on your cheeks and forehead. Called cholasma or melasma, this is a result of increased pigmentation caused by hormonal changes.
Tip for Pregnancy Week 21
- Include calcium rich foods in your diet to stave off leg cramps.
- While sitting, keep your feet elevated slightly. This will help reduce the weight off your back.
- Pick up a children’s book and read aloud. This will help you bond better with your baby and also help baby in recognising your voice.