Week Twenty-one of Your Pregnancy


Week 21 Info


Your baby is approximately 11 inches and weighs about three quarters of a pound.

He can still move all over in the amniotic fluid.

Towards the end of this trimester the baby will begin to settle, usually in a head down position "Although some babies do not turn head down until late in the last trimester.".  About 3-4% of babies will remain in a breech position at term.  Your baby is beginning to show evidence of eyebrows and eyelashes and the hair on his scalp is much more visible.  He wakes and sleeps in regular intervals, similar to what a newborn would do. This may be apparent to you by his movement patterns.  He regularly ingests and absorbs large quantities of the amniotic fluid and excretes urine.

Though not fully matured or developed, your baby's digestive system begins working minimally at 21 weeks.  The intestines are slowly starting to contract and relax, and your baby is able to swallow and absorb fluids through the amniotic fluid.

At some point in your pregnancy, you might actually start noticing that your baby has started hiccupping.  Believe it or not, hiccupping in utero is actually quite common, and typically not a sign that your baby is in distress.  Fetal hiccups typically begin sometime during the second trimester.  You may notice hiccups as a small, repetitive and rhythmic movement that occurs for a few minutes at a time in your belly. Many women actually enjoy the sensation of their baby's hiccups because it reminds them that all is well with their newborn baby.  Some babies will hiccup more than others. Whereas one mom might only notice her baby hiccup on occasion, another might notice their baby hiccup more than 5 times a day.

You are probably much less emotional now as your hormone levels have stabilized. Your uterus is about one-half inch above your belly button so don't be surprised if your "inny" becomes an "outy."  Average weight gain is about 10 - 15 pounds; but again, don't be concerned if you are a little off.  As long as you are eating a healthy diet and drinking plenty of water, don't pay too much attention to the calories or numbers on the scale.

Your ankles and feet may be swelling, particularly at the end of the day. Drink lots of water and rest with your feet elevated.  You may be noticing aches and pains in your legs during or after 21 weeks pregnancy.  Support stockings can help alleviate leg heaviness and aches during pregnancy.  Try putting your maternity support hoseon first thing in the morning before you get out of bed.  This will help alleviate unnecessary swelling and discomfort in your legs.  Also consider propping your feet up when sitting if you don't already do so.  Another way to alleviate aches and pains is regular exercise and stretching.  Consider a 15-minute stretch and walk during your lunch break or once in the morning and once during the afternoon. This will go a long way toward alleviating aches and pains.

Sex is something that many pregnant couples don't feel comfortable discussing at length. However, sexuality can change a lot during pregnancy.  While in the first trimester you may not have any interest in sex "usually from being nauseated, having sore breasts, or you are just too tired", in the second trimester libido is usually increased.  With the second trimester being the easiest, this is a good time for planning and preparing together. The "pukiness" of the first trimester is "hopefully" a memory, and the heaviness of the third trimester is yet to come. Now is a good time to do something special together like taking a vacation or a weekend away "check with your caregiver first about travel". If you can't get away, use the time to grow closer and spend quality time together.

Post A Comment

You must be a member to post comments

Ask An Expert
kids   children   school   fun   child   baby   reading   sports   activities   memories   help   safety   child proof   homework   scrapbooking