Enjoy Those First Kicks
There’s a good reason for each flutter and flip. Find out what triggers them, what they mean, and exactly what your womb-mate is up to for the rest of your pregnancy.
During my two pregnancies, we’d pass time at family gatherings by waiting for the baby to kick. “She’s moving!” I’d yell. But just as Grandma Rozzie hustled over, the feeling would pass. “Don’t worry,” I’d assure everyone. “Once I eat, she’ll probably start again.” More often than not, though, the baby was unusually quiet during these get-togethers, perhaps too mesmerized by all the activity on the outside to make her own ruckus.
When I think back, I can almost feel those kicks again. Few things are as magical as the baby in your belly letting you know she’s there, well before you meet her face to face. “At five months, I only had a slight bump, so the pregnancy wasn’t totally real to me yet,” says Gina Bartnik, of Brooklyn. “But when I felt that movement for the first time, I thought, This is really happening. There’s someone growing inside me.” Not only growing, but stretching, somersaulting, and so much more! Learn about all there is to know as your baby-to-be starts showing off her best moves.
What Does My Baby Look Like At 17 Weeks In The Womb
Your baby this pregnancy week has tiny eyebrows and eyelashes.
Your babys eyes have now moved from the side to the front of the head. Even though they are still firmly shut, your little one can move his eyes under the eyelids.
The umbilical cord is getting stronger and thicker as your baby is getting bigger.
The placenta is also expanding in order to help your developing baby get enough nutrients and oxygen, while also eliminating waste.
Your babys oil glands might begin to produce vernix a white, greasy film that protects and covers the skin while also helping to regulate body temperature.
Your babys toenails are rising this week. Nails will most likely reach the tips of the toes and fingers by the end of this month.
I Get A Kick Out Of You
What’s the deal with those tae kwon do jabs in your tummy? Your pressing questions, answered.
1) Should It Hurt?
“For most moms, kicking is gentle, but if the baby bumps a sensitive organ or a rib, it can become very uncomfortable,” says Glade B. Curtis, M.D., coauthor of Your Pregnancy Week by Week. Feeling the baby is usually an exciting event, but if you experience severe pain when your sweetie moves, see your doctor, because this could signal a condition such as an ovarian cyst, a defect in the uterine wall, or a bladder infection.
2) When Is The Best Time To Feel Baby Move?
Babies have quiet and active moments, and your wee one’s patterns will become clear. At this stage, you may not catch her kicks when you’re busy . But once you’re resting, you’ll recognize them. A good way to feel them is to lie on your side, which will stimulate the baby. Another prime kicking time: a half hour or so after meals.
3) Will Certain Foods Get My Baby Moving?
“Yes. Generally, foods and drinks containing caffeine or sugar have a bigger impact,” says Mark DeFrancesco, M.D., chief medical officer of Women’s Health Connecticut, in Avon. “Anything that stimulates mom will cross the placenta and, after a while, stimulate the baby.”
4) He Kicks So Much, He’s Bound To Be A Future Soccer Star, Right?
5) Should I Worry That The Baby Hasn’t Moved Much Lately?
Whenever you notice a distinct change in your baby’s normal movement patterns , talk with your doctor.
Recommended Reading: How To Burn Stomach And Back Fat
Can I Feel My Baby At 17 Weeks
Your baby at 17 weeks is moving and you might start to feel some fluttering movements. Some refer to this fluttering as the quickening.
The movements will be more pronounced as your baby gets bigger and has less space to move around in.
You might start to notice things that increase babys movements for example, when you lie down, or when you eat.
If the placenta is at the front it could be a few more weeks before you can reliably feel movements early in the second trimester.
Those feelings are amazing, but dont worry if you havent experienced them yet .
Although every woman is different, the first movements of the baby are usually felt between 16 and 22 weeks.
Your Body At 40 Weeks Of Pregnancy
At full term, or 40 weeks of pregnancy, the fetus head has generally lowered into your pelvis, where it takes up most of the space. This is called lightening. In first pregnancies, this may happen a few weeks before labor. In repeat pregnancies, this can happen at the time of labor. The canal of the broad, enlarged cervix is still filled with the plug of mucous. If this is your first pregnancy, the small opening at the bottom of your cervix is usually not dilated, whereas if you have given birth before, it will often be open as wide as two fingers some time before labor begins.
At this point, you may be experiencing frequent urination, increased constipation, edema and aching legs or vulva. Varicose veins in the vulva, rectum and legs are also possible. This is because of the position of the uterus, the pressure of the baby’s head and a loss of muscle tone as the hormone relaxin loosens your tissues in preparation for birth. Other changes at this time include increased development of blood vessels and increased amount of blood.
Read Also: What To Do For Stomach Acid Pain
Changes In You And Your Body At 17 Weeks Pregnant
What to expect at 17 weeks pregnant? For starters, its different for everyone. Some mums-to-be see a cute little baby bump beginning to show and the pregnancy might be more visible. It can be an exciting time as things start to feel more real. If youre slim or youve had a baby before, its possible that youre showing early, but some women dont show for another few weeks. Either way, those skin-tight jeans will most likely be feeling a bit snug.
But the good news is you may start to feel baby moving by now. In the early days youll just feel little flutters or a bubbly sensation, no its not indigestion, its baby saying a first little hello. If youre struggling to feel anything dont worry, it can be weeks before some women get the slightest flutter, and even then it can be very subtle and easily missed. Try relaxing in a quiet room and tuning in to your body.
Also, a good way to tune in to your body is through gentle pregnancy exercises and pregnancy yoga, but check with your GP or midwife first. For any instructor-led activity, ensure they are qualified to teach and let them know that you are pregnant.
Stretch Marks At 17 Weeks Pregnant
At week 17, your skin is starting to stretch to accommodate your growing baby. This means it will start to get itchy especially around the belly and breast area.
Use a gentle moisturizer, which may help minimize the symptoms. Coconut oil is wonderful and its natural. Avoid heavily scented skin cream, not great for skin and the smell can often instigate nausea in pregnancy.
Unfortunately, you cant prevent stretch marks from happening on your stomach, but you can reduce their severity.
Stay hydrated, eat foods high in vitamin C, and avoid gaining weight too quickly.
You May Like: How To Melt Away Fat From Stomach
Your Baby When Youre 17 Weeks Pregnant
Your baby is getting bigger all the time, and might now weigh more than the placenta:
- Your baby is about 13 cm from head to bottom, and about 150 gm.
- Your babys external sex organs are completely formed.
- The kidneys are working, and your baby passes urine every 50 minutes or so. Your baby will also swallow some urine in the amniotic fluid. This is normal.
- Loud noises might make your baby startle.
- Your babys taste buds are working, and your baby can tell the difference between sweet and bitter.
Your Emotional Changes This Week
- When youre 17 weeks pregnant, a strange transitional time occurs. You may still not look as if you are pregnant, but your usual clothes are becoming too tight and you cant just grab anything to wear out of your wardrobe. If something fits your tummy, it may not fit across your breast. Dressing has become harder. You could find yourself close to tears trying to decide what to wear and what fits. Go shopping! There is no end to the remedial effects of a little retail therapy.
- You could be feeling a bit scared this week and doubt your decision to become a parent. You may doubt your own ability, question if you or your partner are ready, reflect on your own upbringing and even wonder if you are capable of raising a child. These completely normal doubts may flood your mind, probably in the wee small hours when our rational selves are not at their best. Speak with someone and sit tight, these are the worries of almost every pregnant woman.
- If youve always been an independent person, this can be a challenging time. You may be getting to the stage where you need to ask for help in practical ways. This doesnt mean youve become dependent or less capable. Remember that pregnancy in many ways is a shared experience between you and your partner.
Also Check: How To Get Gas Out Of Your Stomach
How Much Weight Should You Put On By 17 Weeks Pregnant
In the second trimester, its natural to gain 1 to 2 pounds per week. Youre probably feeling a lot hungrier, as your babys growth starts to accelerate. This means the demand on you is even greater.
It does not mean because you are growing a baby you can eat for two.
Its still important to make sure your weight gain is slow and steady.
Stick to a balanced, healthy diet and opt for nutrient-dense foods.
Be sure to readPregnancy Weight Gain How Much Weight Is Normal?for more information.
Dont overeat for the sake of it, or you could find your weight gain puts you into a high-risk category. Youre more likely to develop gestational diabetes, which can affect your plans for a normal birth.
If your weight gain is happening faster than it should, speak to your doctor or midwife and ask for support and advice.
Can I Lie On My Stomach At 17 Weeks Pregnant
Its time to find a new position for sleeping. When youre on your back, your growing baby and uterus put pressure on a big blood vessel, the inferior vena cava. This can interfere with blood flow to baby, and it can lower your blood pressure. Its best for your 17 week baby bump to start sleeping on your left side for optimal blood flow.
Don’t Miss: What Can Cause Stomach Swelling
What Changes Are Occurring With Your Body At 17 Weeks Pregnant
As your abdomen continues to grow at 17 weeks pregnant, other organs will move around to compensate for the growth of your uterus and baby. The top of your uterus is beginning to appear more rounded and is lengthening. Your uterus will begin pushing your intestines up and out towards the side of your abdomen. Most women find it easier to feel their uterus when they are standing. If you lie down and try to feel your uterus, it can be quite difficult since it falls back towards your spine.
Tight Pants At 17 Weeks Pregnant
Ok, maybe you dont have a big enough belly to go to full maternity clothes yet, but those pants are definitely getting tighter!
Leggings are always popular as they are spacious and dont restrict your tummy. Baby doll dresses that flow out from under the breast are very comfortable as well.
You will definitely have to start thinking about your wardrobe now that your pants are feeling tight and might not fit you around the belly for much longer.
Don’t Miss: Is Pedialyte Good For Upset Stomach
What Does My Baby Look Like In Week 17
If you could see your babys face, youd notice eyelashes and eyebrows starting to grow.
And if you could take their hand, youd see they already have a unique fingerprint.
Before this point, your babys head was bigger in proportion to their body. Now, however, their body is starting to fill out, and their proportions are starting to even out.
Your babys eyes can move, although their eyelids are still shut, and wont open again until week 26. The bone tissue in their feet begins to harden.
The placenta continues to grow to keep up with your baby’s needs. By the time you give birth it will weigh about 500g.
Your Physical Changes This Week
- Lots of extra blood supply to your own body could be making you feel hot and flushed, even if it is the middle of winter. You really arent the best person in the room to be gauging the temperature at the moment. Look at the palms of your hands and see how close to the surface of your skin your blood is. Dont be alarmed if you get your palms read and you are told you are pregnant. Even if you arent showing yet, red palmar lines are one of the signs of pregnancy, not a reflection of the palm readers skills.
- You could be noticing the veins in your legs are more visible and your legs are aching if youre standing a lot. If youve had a baby previously, are overweight or have a family history, you could be more prone to varicose veins. Some women need to wear support hose to assist gravity in returning blood back up their legs. Try to lie with your legs elevated and sit when you can.
- You may have a head of hair which could be used to advertise shampoo. Usually hair goes through growing and shedding phases, but during pregnancy not much shedding occurs. Hence the lustrous locks.
- At 17 weeks pregnant, your nails may be looking a little strange. Many women find their nails become brittle, weak and flaky when they are pregnant. Paint on nail hardeners wont do you or the baby any harm, just use them in a well ventilated space so youre not breathing in the fumes.
Don’t Miss: Can Chlamydia Cause Stomach Pain
Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound: Do You Need It
If youre like most women, you probably had your first scan between weeks 8 and 14. This is usually followed by another scan at 18-21 weeks. This is sometimes referred to as a dating scan because it will give you a reliable idea of your expected due date and also confirm how many babies youre carrying!
Some healthcare professionals may also refer to this as an anomaly scan this is because it allows a detailed view of your babys appearance and overall development. It can pick up on a wide range of conditions, but not all of them. If youre unsure of the benefits of this type of scan, your practitioner will be able to advise you fully and this can help you decide whether or not to request the scan.
In addition to scans, you should also be aware that tests for a number of serious developmental disorders are available to you at this stage. Your healthcare provider has probably already mentioned this to you and put things into motion, but if not feel free to flag it up and ask what arrangements need to be made.
Your Babys Development At 17 Weeks
As you approach the half-way mark, baby is working hard to grow and develop. Theyre practicing important skills theyll need for life outside the womb.
- Bone development: The cartilage in your 17-week fetus limbs has turned almost completely to bone. Their bones will continue to harden and fuse into their early years of life.
- Sweat glands: Is it hot in there? Baby is developing sweat glands. Babies dont actually sweat, though, until after they are bornand it can take a few weeks for all of the glands to start working.
- Sucking and swallowing: So how does your baby spend their days? Theyre practicing sucking and swallowing in order to get ready for the world outside the womb, and those first attempts at getting milk from the breast or the bottle. Some babies even begin to suck their thumbs in the womb.
- Umbilical cord: The umbilical cord on baby at 17 weeks is getting longer and thicker, so itll be strong enough to keep up with all the demands of the second half of pregnancy. Think of the umbilical cord as a lifeline from mom to baby. It has a vein that carries blood filled with oxygen and nutrients to baby, and two arteries that send all the waste back to the placenta.
Don’t Miss: Does Stomach Cancer Cause Pain
Week By Week Pregnancy Guide: 17 Weeks Pregnant
You’re now 17 weeks pregnant but what should you expect? Read week 17 of our week by week pregnancy guide to find out everything you need to know…
Welcome to your pregnancy week by week guide for your 17th week!
At 17 weeks pregnant your baby has been growing for a while, and theyll be doing a lot of wriggling around now. If you want to know what else is happening during your 17th week, read on
|Your maternity and baby care essentials
Tips For 17 Weeks Pregnant
Take cold showers
Look, pregnancy is hard work, so its natural to have extra perspiration. Try cooling down in the morning with a colder shower than you may be used to. Bonus: Cold showers may help relieve aches and pains and boost your blood circulation.
Stop the itch
Dont let itchy skin drive you crazy. Soothe your 17 weeks pregnant belly with aloe vera gel to lock in moisture. For double the hydration, combine some aloe vera gel with a moisturizer that has vitamin E or cocoa butter to really nourish your skin.
Practice portion control
Youre eating for two, but dont go overboardyou should consume 2,200 calories per day to nourish you and baby at 17 weeks. Focus on eating small meals made up mainly of lean protein, produce, whole grains and heart-healthy fats.
Wear the right underwear
Vaginal discharge isnt fun, but it doesnt have to be uncomfortable. Wear breathable cotton underwear to stay cool and dry. If you need extra protection, try an unscented pantiliner.