When you first got the news of your pregnancy, you must have been so excited. Waking up every day and feeling the changes your body goes through is a beautiful feeling. Each day a soon-to-be-mother looks forward to the day when she will finally get to hold her baby.
During the first trimester the hormones cause a lot of change, but as the second trimester begins the baby also gets to go through some major changes. The second trimester starts from the 13th week of pregnancy and goes on till the 26th week of pregnancy. During this period the baby goes through some of the most incredible changes and develops almost on a daily basis.
12 Size of the baby
At the beginning of the second trimester the baby is about 3 inches long. Your doctor will inform you of your baby’s height which is measured from the crown to the rump; that is from the head to the bottom and not till the toes because they are usually curled up.
During the start of the second trimester, your baby’s head will be the biggest part of its body. In the weeks after that, the baby’s body will grow and balance out the head to body size ratio. At the end of the second trimester your baby will be almost 9 or more inches long.
11 Baby becomes more aware
By the 18th week of pregnancy, your baby will start hearing sounds, like your own heartbeat. In addition to that, as the weeks pass your baby will be increasingly capable of hearing your voice and the voice of those closer to you when you are communicating.
With this in mind, it’s best if any kind of disagreements between the baby’s parents can be talked out rather than yelling, because the increased volume and anger can stress the baby out. At this time your baby will also start recognizing voices and will be able to differentiate its mother’s voice with other people’s voices.
10 Appearance of fine hair
Fine hair and white wax like substance will appear on your baby’s skin and its purpose will be to protect and cover your baby’s skin. At this time your baby’s skin is very thin and wrinkled hence it requires some kind of protection. This is why the appearance of fine hair and wax like substance plays a vital aspect in protecting your baby’s delicate skin. There will still be no visible fat under your baby’s skin and it will only show up in the third trimester.
The soft fine hairs will cover your baby’s shoulders, back and temples. These will shed in the first week after your baby will be born. The white wax like substance also known as vernix caseosa and is there to protect your baby’s skin from the long exposure of the amniotic fluid. This is shed just before birth.
9 Your baby can now open its eyes
From the end of the first trimester, your baby's eyes have been moving from the side of its head to the front eye sockets where they will stay.
Some babies open their eyes in their mother’s womb as early as in their 20th week. While some babies take time to open their eyelids, this milestone usually happens in the second trimester. During the first trimester your baby’s eyelids were sealed shut. Even though their eyes can open in the second trimester, they will not be able to see clearly until the third trimester.
8 Your baby’s sex can be identified
The biggest revelation of the second trimester will be the sex of your baby. The 20 week ultrasound is usually where parents learn whether they’re having a girl or a boy. At this time your baby’s genitals and reproductive organs are fully developed. This is one of the most anticipated moments for the mothers.
Mothers have been feeling the little being within them for so long, that finally finding out what gender the baby is becomes a precious moment.
7 Baby recognizes voices
Moreover, your baby will start to understand familiar voices, like the voice of its father. All verbal messages will leave an impact on your child and will play an important role in their personality development. So you and your significant other should talk to your baby together.
Your baby may also respond to sounds with a spontaneous jerk. The sound of dogs barking, or any other type of loud and sudden noise may cause your baby to become startled and move.
6 You will finally feel your baby moving
Your baby moves even before the second trimester, but it isn’t very noticeable. You’ll be able to feel little movements in your midsection by the 20th week of pregnancy. In the start the movements will seem like slight tickling feelings and it will be hard to even feel that it is your baby moving.
But after a little while the movements will be more prominent. Your baby’s movements are a positive sign that they are practising to live outside your body. As your baby starts to kick, it will mean that their muscles are growing stronger.
You’ll be astonished to know that during this period your baby is also learning to make faces, like smiling and frowning. You’ll also be able to feel when your baby gets the hiccups.
5 Development of fingerprints and footprints
In the midst of the second trimester, your baby’s fingerprints and footprints will develop. These prints will first appear in your baby’s hand and then its foot. Fingerprints help your baby to grip things properly.
Furthermore, during this trimester your baby’s fingers will also start taking proper shape and become more elongated and distinguished. Before they were webbed and didn’t have nails, but your baby's nails are growing now and will need a trim after they're born.
4 Developing bones and teeth
Your baby's bones and teeth will be developing and gaining more mass this trimester. Over the next three months the baby's teeth will form, both sets, the baby teeth and their adult teeth. Your baby will even be able to suck their thumb in this trimester.
At the end of the second trimester, your baby will have developed enough that they can survive being born prematurely and will live successfully in NICU.
3 Functioning nervous system
Your baby's nervous system grows and matures over these three months. Your baby can register touch in their brain and can understand where they begin and end in the womb. This also means that your baby will begin to use their reflexes, and can even swallow small amounts of amniotic fluid.
2 Flexing some muscle
Your baby's muscles are starting to develop and strengthen as well. Once your baby begins moving, they are essentially exercising and all the moving they do helps to build their muscles up. The first movements you'll feel are called "quickening" and these movements will turn into distinguishable movements from feet and hands.
1 Baby's skin is see through
Right now your baby's skin is see through and looks white-ish no matter what the baby's ethnicity is. That's because your baby's body lacks fat, but they're gaining more fat over these three months as well. Once they're ready to begin the third trimester there will be enough fat deposits under the skin to give the skin more color.
Each month of pregnancy brings its struggles as well as excitements. Take each day as a gift and try not to stress yourself out. Pretty soon you’ll have your baby in your arms and a whole new set of worries will set in, so enjoy this time when you carry your baby with you every where and people fawn over you, because this “honeymoon” phase of pregnancy won’t last long!