18 Weeks Pregnant

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— Pregnancy week 18 means that you are fast approaching the halfway

Still, you are feeling pretty good when you are 18 weeks pregnant. The second trimester for most mothers-to-be seems like a breeze compared to the first.

With the increasing belly size, most women at 18 weeks pregnant think that continuing exercise routine may harm the baby inside. As long as your healthcare provider doesn’t object, you can continue with moderate workout activity.

Are you feeling extra hungry? With the increased belly size and the growing baby inside, it is normal to feel hungry many times a day. Just ensure that you are having foods rich in nutrients. Avoid excessive sweets, chips, and other junk foods that add extra calories. Don’t worry about these excess hungry feelings; all these pregnancy side effects will disappear after pregnancy week 40. Just eat and enjoy your pregnant life.

18 Weeks PregnantAs your belly increases in size, it is normal to feel difficulty sleeping. During pregnancy, most doctors recommend sleeping on the left side. Sleeping with the back or right side will cause unnecessary pressure on the pelvic veins. The pressure causes the compression of the vein called the inferior vena cava, which plays an important role in bringing the blood back to the heart.

This week, your circulatory system will go through various changes so that the blood pressure levels might be a little low than usual. Don’t make movements fast, such as sitting, standing, and stepping, because you may feel dizziness or lightheadedness. This is completely a normal condition during pregnancy, but it doesn’t indicate that jumping and running are also acceptable.

Symptoms experienced by an 18 weeks pregnant woman:

When you are 18 weeks pregnant, you may experience mild swelling of the feet and ankles. Fluid accumulation in body tissues can cause swelling of the ankles and feet. So, to decrease water retention, avoid standing or sitting for much time and keep your legs elevated whenever possible.

Leg cramps are also a condition that most women experience during pregnancy. This condition makes you suddenly wake up during the night by causing sharp spasms in the calves. Though there is no specified reason for this condition, you can reduce this by practicing calf stretches before hitting the sack.

Another pregnancy symptom that you experience during these days is flatulence. Are you feeling very much annoyed with the gas bubbles? Don’t worry! Just try to relax as much as you can because tension makes you swallow more air inside and makes the condition even worse.

18 weeks pregnant woman

Physical changes that occur in an 18-week pregnant woman:

You enjoy yourself a lot with your baby’s kicks inside the belly. If you are obese, have stronger abdominal muscles, or the fetus is hiding, then you may drop on the late end of the scale. First-time mothers may not experience the fetal moves as soon as in succeeding pregnancies.

An increase in capillaries under the facial skin can make you look flushed. During pregnancy week 18 or even in the upcoming weeks, the melanin production will increase in your body. Higher levels of melanin can lead to dark patches in several areas of the skin. This condition can be treated after childbirth.

Your uterus is now just below the belly button. Certainly, you are showing a bit more by now. The size of the uterus when you are 18 weeks pregnant is almost similar to a small melon.

You may also experience skin, nail, and hair changes during pregnancy. Though you may get the pregnancy glow, there is a great chance to develop acne, redness, and eczema on your face. These conditions are normal during pregnancy. If you want to consult a dermatologist, mention what you are expecting.

During pregnancy, hair growth will increase, and you may feel the hair thicker. The diet you are consuming and the prenatal vitamins you are taking, especially iron, play a major role in hair growth.

Fetal changes that occur in an 18-week pregnant woman:

When you are in pregnancy week 18, your baby is about the size of 6 inches in length and weighs about 7 ounces.

Week 18 mainly concentrates on the development of a baby’s skin. So far, there are two layers on the baby’s skin, such as dermis and epidermis. By now, your baby’s skin is completely covered by a greasy, cheese or wax-like substance called vernix caseosa. This substance covers the baby from head to toe and protects from the dangers of exposure to amniotic fluid, such as bruising, abrasions, and chapping. This substance also helps the baby come out easily from the birth canal.

For baby girls, pregnancy week 18 is the period for developing the uterus and vagina. For baby boys, prostate glands are completely developed by this week.

Baby bones will become hard or ossify into the shape of a bone rather than rubbery cartilage. Clavicle and leg bones are the primary ones that will be ossified initially.

Your baby can react to any loud noises, and you may feel the kicks as the baby is scared. You can also hear the baby’s heartbeat by placing a stethoscope on your belly. Your baby can now attain a position of crossed legs with the thumb in his/her mouth. You can clearly observe this with the 18 weeks pregnant ultrasound scar.

What care should be taken by an 18 weeks pregnant woman?

Pregnancy Week 18

When you are 18 weeks pregnant, you should be very careful about pregnancy exercises. If you had a sedentary pregnancy until now, better to start little walking this week. If you feel that you are an active mother-to-be, plan to modify your prenatal fitness program that fits your increasing belly needs.

Take enough rest and a few afternoon naps, so the blood flow saves energy and supplies the essential nutrients to your little one.

Whenever you observe lower blood pressure, try to relax more often. Listening to music and practicing prenatal meditation will decrease stress levels and help you stay relaxed and calm.

For working mothers-to-be, taking work breaks is very important; otherwise, unnecessary stress will be put on you and your baby. Till now, if you haven’t undergone an ultrasound scan, it is better to consider now.

Have a wonderful journey of pregnancy!! Go on to know more about the exciting things during pregnancy week 19…

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