23 Weeks Pregnant – Everything You Need To Know

23 Weeks Pregnant - Everything You Need To Know

You’re 23 weeks pregnant!

Your pregnancy is in full swing and your baby is growing quickly.

23 Weeks Pregnant – Everything You Need To Know

Are you feeling more excited now you’re getting close to the third trimester?

Wondering how many months is 23 weeks pregnant? You’re now in the 6th month of pregnancy. Not long to go!

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23 Weeks Pregnant Belly

This is often the time most pregnant women really start to feel connected to their babies.

Your partner is also likely to enjoy cuddling up to your bump.

Maybe your partner can already feel those movements under your skin.

If not, it won’t be long before he can feel (and see) your baby moving around.

23 Weeks Pregnant Weight Gain

At 23 weeks pregnant, you might notice you’re gaining weight steadily each week.

This is to be expected, as your baby is gaining weight rapidly.

Stick to a balanced diet and moderate exercise; this will help you keep within a healthy weight range.

Healthy weight gain means you’re less likely to experience health problems that can lead to complications later in pregnancy.

Pregnancy complications mean you are also more likely to face interventions during birth.

Interventions include induction, assisted birth (forceps or vacuum) and c-section.

You’re probably quite busy now – keeping up with your normal life while you also prepare for life with baby.

You might still be feeling very energetic, or perhaps you have started to feel your energy wane a bit lately.

If so, it might be time to start taking it easy at weekends.

But don’t forget to continue with your regular exercise.

Moderate exercise, like walking or swimming, will help give you more energy throughout your pregnancy.

Regular exercise keeps your upper leg and pelvic muscles strong. This will be useful when it comes time to give birth.

Exercise also helps increase circulation.

As always, don’t become overheated while exercising, and be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.

Planning Ahead

Have you started planning for your maternity leave yet?

It’s also worth finding out what your partner’s entitlements are in terms of paternity or family leave.

It’s really helpful to have as much support as possible in the first weeks after you give birth.

If your budget allows, put some money aside for that. It is also a good way to plan for when your income changes.

23 Weeks Pregnant: Symptoms

Have you had any interesting dreams lately?

It’s quite common in the second trimester for pregnant women to have really intense and vivid dreams. These dreams often leave such a deep impression you remember them the next day.

Indigestion and heartburn are significant parts of your life when you’re 23 weeks pregnant.

Your uterus is above your belly button now. It is pushing up against your stomach and your oesophagus.

By the end of your pregnancy, you could have lost as much as five centimetres of space in these areas.

Stretching up and bending backwards can alleviate the cramped feeling in your abdomen.

Try to remember to take some slow deep breaths every so often too.

Pregnancy hormones are also adding to your digestive problems.

High levels of progesterone causes muscle relaxation. This slows the digestion and causes the stomach to empty into the small intestine more slowly.

As a result, acids can build up in the stomach and be forced back up into the oesophagus.

Over the counter heartburn medicines are safe for you to take.

If they aren’t doing enough to manage your symptoms, talk to your doctor.

Avoid eating just before you go bed, as lying down makes the symptoms worse.

About this time, you might notice the start of a dark line down the centre of your belly. It’s called a linea nigra.

It’s actually always been there, but pregnancy causes hyper pigmentation, which makes it noticeable.

It will fade after baby is born.

Check out Linea Nigra During Pregnancy – What You Need To Know for more information. 

You might also start to notice some gradual swelling in your ankles and feet.

This is normal, but sudden swelling should always be reported to your care provider.

23 Weeks Pregnant: Your Baby

In week 23 your baby’s skin is beginning to thicken and become more opaque.

As capillaries begins to form, your baby’s skin will start to look pinker.

All of your baby’s muscles are now working and beginning to coordinate.

You might even notice more definite movements rather than a fluttering feeling.

Your baby’s lungs are starting to produce a special substance called surfactant. This is happening to prepare your baby to breathe air after birth.

If a mother goes into preterm labour (before 36 weeks) she is usually given steroids by injection, to help baby to increase the level of surfactant.

At 23 weeks pregnant, your baby is still meeting all nutritional needs through the placenta.

In the weeks to come, you might notice your baby is quieter during the day when you are moving around.

This is because  your body movements are soothing and comforting.

After birth you’ll notice how your baby likes to be held and is comforted by movement.

At 23 weeks, your baby can hear sounds quite well – including your voice and your partner’s, but also things like dogs barking and the sound of a vacuum cleaner.

If a baby were born at 23 weeks, with immediate and quality care, the rate of survival would be around 16%.

The rate of survival for premature babies jumps dramatically, at 24 weeks, to almost 45%.

It’s scary to think about having a premature baby.

However, if you’re worried or you’re at risk for preterm birth, knowing the survival rates, based on weeks of gestation, can be reassuring.

You can read more in Premature Survival Rates By Week

This week, your baby probably weighs between 370 and 566 grams, and is about 28-31 cm long – the size of a large grapefruit.

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Last Updated: February 14, 2019

CONTRIBUTOR

BellyBelly.com.au


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