pregnancy week 14

From now on you may be able to see a little bump appearing, as your uterus continues to move further up your abdomen from just below your pubic line to your navel. This probably means a little shopping trip for some maternity clothes is in order.

Your developing baby

This week your baby practises lots of new skills; the digestive system starts to move food through and your baby is busy weeing into the amniotic fluid. He also practises breathing in amniotic fluid to and from his lungs that will help him learn to breathe once he is born. Your baby's lungs are the last organs to develop properly because he only needs them for breathing in the air once he is born.

Eyelids, fingernails and toenails are developing rapidly and your baby can twist and turn his joints, practising for the future. If you could see him now he would be rolling and somersaulting around. Tiny hairs are growing all over his body called lanugo, which grow in swirls and patterns and eventually become the imprint on your baby’s fingerprint once they fall out. Blood vessels are beginning to form and if you could see your baby his skin would look translucent with hundreds of tiny veins covering his body. This week your baby may also have learnt how to suck his thumb, another skill that will help him learn to feed in the future.

Your developing body

Your hormones are steadying up now as the placenta prepares to take over the role of supporting your baby. This means you should have less emotional ups and downs (phew..), and morning sickness and tiredness should start to disappear. You will probably begin to feel less pregnant, and wonder whether you still are! Don’t worry, lots of women feel like this and in a few weeks your tummy may start to show you are pregnant. Enjoy this time if you feel good and full of energy and do some gentle exercise like a pregnancy yoga class, or have a swim.

Some women experience constipation at this stage of pregnancy because of hormonal changes in the body that relax the bowel and stop food and waste products from moving through the system so easily. To help avoid suffering from constipation, help your body by drinking lots of fluids and eating fibre-rich foods. Piles can also pose a problem if you have constipation, so try not to sit on the loo straining for ages.

Your uterus is now the size of a grapefruit so you may start to notice a swelling of your tummy. Women tend to experience a bit of weight gain during pregnancy and this is normal, but too much weight is bad for your baby. Read our feature, healthy diet for pregnant women to help get the right balance with the foods you eat and try to avoid those chocolate biscuits!

Curious what to expect in week 15? Read on...

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