20 weeks pregnant

At 20 weeks pregnant, the expecting woman is officially halfway through her pregnancy, and another 20 weeks or less and she can hold her precious gift who is now still growing in her womb. Week 20 is going to be another busy time for the baby as he or she develops to maturity.

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Being 20 weeks pregnant, the woman now has a round pregnancy bump. Most of the discomforting pain she experiences is due to the growing uterus. This week is another crucial period for fetal development, especially with regards to the baby’s emotional and psychological advancement. It is essential for a 20-week pregnant woman to avoid stressful situations and events as these can have a huge effect on the baby.

What to expect at 20 weeks pregnant

  • Weight gain

The added weight on the 20th week of pregnancy lies between 10 and 11 pounds, though some women tend to gain more weight than others. The mother should continue to eat healthy and nutritious foods and take vitamin supplements to aid in the baby’s growing nutritional needs.

  • Pregnancy symptoms

At this time, many expecting women get a break from the unpleasant symptoms but have to deal with the effects of a growing uterus.

  • Exercise

Exercise is beneficial during and after pregnancy. It enhances the woman’s overall flexibility which will prove valuable during delivery. Some will even participate in Lamaze courses which teach pregnant women the proper birthing and breathing techniques.

  • Fundal height

The doctor will start measuring and recording the fundal height on week 20 in order to determine that the baby’s birth. However, the doctor will be using ultrasound to establish the baby’s growth on the latter part of pregnancy.

Fetal Development at the 20th week of pregnancy

On the 20th week of pregnancy, the baby is taller and bigger at 10.5 long and 10.5 ounces. The fetus, with his or her body slowly becoming proportionate with the head, is able to swallow and breathe regularly. His/her body is also filling out with fats and the facial features have become more distinct.  Furthermore, the fetus now follows a regular sleeping and waking pattern. For those who are conceiving a baby boy, his testicles are almost in their rightful positions. Among the remarkable fetal development a 20-week pregnant woman should be thrilled about is the development of the baby’s teeth buds hidden underneath the gums.

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Symptoms of 20 weeks pregnant

  • Contractions

These are called the Braxton-Hicks contractions which are weak, false labor contractions that often come and go. Unlike real labor contractions, Braxton-Hicks contractions are painless, irregular and increase in frequency as the pregnancy advances.

  • Skin darkening

This is often noticed on different parts of the woman’s body and is caused by hormonal changes.

  • Dizziness

Giddiness is felt due to the heightened blood production. This can also be experienced by women who have low blood pressure.

  • Chloasma

This appears due to the increased production of melanin in the body.  It is noticeable as dark spots on the chin, upper lip, cheekbones, nose and forehead, and tend to worsen under direct sunlight.

  • Abdominal itching

Many 20 weeks pregnant women are plagued by abdominal itching which is caused by stretching of the skin due to the growing baby.

20 weeks pregnant pictures

 

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