Week 21 of pregnancy

Week 21 of pregnancy

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Article reviewed by Dr. Anca Panaitescu, specialist obstetrics-gynecologist, Clinical Hospital Philanthropy

In week 21 of pregnancy you are about halfway through the pregnancy, which can be an exciting time. For some mothers it is harder the first half, if they had nausea and vomiting, and for others it is more difficult the second half, because of the extra weight and pressure that the baby puts on the body. No matter which category you belong to, don't forget that the task is something unique!

How big is the baby at week 21 of pregnancy

Your baby is now like a baby. It looks like a newborn in miniature, measuring 26 centimeters (from head to toe) and weighing almost 400 grams.

Pregnancy at 21 weeks: how your baby grows

This week, his skin continues to be wrinkled and appears reddish. Fine hair covers the skin of the whole body (lanugo), and will persist until birth.

Your face is in full growth and development and now needs a lot of nutrients, which is related to your increased appetite during this period. Most of your baby's food is provided by the placenta.

This week, the lips can be differentiated better, and the first images of the teeth look like buds below the gum line. The eyes have developed, although the iris (colored part of the eye) is not yet pigmented. The genes and the eyebrows are in place and the pancreas, essential for hormone production, develops in stages.

At week 21 of pregnancy, the baby's bone marrow begins to form blood cells. Until now, these were synthesized only by the liver and spleen, but starting this week the spinal cord will also participate.

Also read: What the baby looks like in your tummy week 21 of pregnancy?

Good note: Every baby develops differently - even in your body. Our information is intended to give you a general idea about the development of your baby.

How many months is 21 weeks pregnant?

The end of the first 5 months of pregnancy - that's 21 weeks. You went through half the pregnancy period.

What happens in your body during week 21 of pregnancy

You may have already started to feel the movements of your baby. If you have not yet felt, you will soon feel them in the coming weeks. Many pregnant women describe these movements as beating the wings of a butterfly or as fine impulses that are felt in the lower abdomen. As the baby gains new strength, you will feel these movements stronger. Soon, they will also be felt by your partner if you hold your hand on your tummy.

Common symptoms at 21 weeks of pregnancy

As your baby grows, your tummy grows! You will begin to notice traces of skin tightening on the abdomen and stretch marks may occur. Most pregnant women have stretch marks in pregnancy. Some pregnant women get away, though.

These small strips of skin, with a different texture than normal, can vary in color from pink to dark brown (depending on the color of your skin) and will become more visible as the pregnancy progresses.

They can appear not only on your tummy, but also on your buttocks, thighs, hips or breasts. Contrary to what is believed, lotions do not guarantee the prevention of stretch marks, but they can help you fight itching (itching) and help maintain skin hydration. The best thing you can do is drink a lot of water and be careful not to get too fat than recommended.

Stretch marks will become darker with pregnancy, but will gradually fade after birth.

Also, your belly, still flat, will soon appear ready to explode. But it will return to its original form after birth.

Another skin change that you may notice during pregnancy is sometimes called "vascular star". These are small areas of red leather, slightly out of relief, which has small extensions.

They usually appear on the face, neck, upper chest and arms and are, in fact, thin blood vessels in the skin, modified under the influence of increased estrogen levels during pregnancy. Usually they disappear after birth.

Apart from these skin changes, there are other changes that can be observed during the week of pregnancy. As with most symptoms during pregnancy, you can blame hormones for most changes in your appearance. Here are what they are:

- They seem more often, more shiny. You do not grow more hair, but only you fall less than usual. During pregnancy, your body loses its hair much slower than it did before.

What you can do: If your hair is more often beneficial to you, then enjoy it. But if it makes you look more rebellious than you ever were, ask your stylist to do something with it at the next hairstyle. After the baby is born, you will begin to lose more hair, so this change will not last forever.

Increases more hair on the body. The sex hormones known as androgens can cause hair growth in the beard, above the upper lip, and even on the cheeks and cheeks. What you can do: epilator, wax or razor blade, all are safe methods of hair removal to take care of these temporary changes. Use the epilation method you are already used to and you can easily endure during this period.

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- Nails grow faster. Your nails can grow faster and you can see changes in texture. Nails can become stronger, softer or more shiny. Give yourself an occasional manicure at your favorite salon.

- Skin changes. Some pregnant women say that their skin has never looked better. If you are one of them too, then enjoy the proverbial glow.

Others find that pregnancy hormones aggravate some skin conditions such as acne. Talk to your doctor about safe treatments during pregnancy. Some anti-acne medications can be a real danger to your baby.

- Changes in skin color. An increased amount of melanin can create a thin dark color line (called linea nigra) that stretches from the navel to the level of the pubic bone. Dark spots on the face may also occur.

Reduces color changes at the face level using a SPF 15 or greater protective cream. Use a hat and avoid the sun during peak hours (range 10 - 16).

- Breasts and nipples are pigmented - the pigmented circles around the nipples - grow larger and darker.

The small bumps on your areolas, known as the Montgomery tubers, can also become more pronounced. These tubers are fat-producing glands that help fight bacteria and lubricate the skin. Some women may notice more pronounced blood vessels in the breasts.

All these changes have the role of preparing the breasts for breastfeeding.

- Swollen feet. Buy yourself a pair of comfortable shoes or slippers to be able to cope with swollen feet.

Analyzes and investigations in week 21 of pregnancy

This week is usually recommended fetal morphology of the second trimester, which is considered to be one of the most important and thorough ultrasound during pregnancy. During this, the doctor can analyze whether the fetal organs (heart, liver, kidneys), head, spine, pelvis and limbs have developed properly.

In addition, during week 21 you can schedule for the glucose tolerance test. This is part of the tests that are done for the detection of gestational diabetes and, usually, is carried out between weeks 24 and 28 of pregnancy. In exceptional cases, however, more precisely, if you have had gestational diabetes or have an increased risk of diabetes from a genetic point of view, then your doctor may ask you to do the test from week 13 of pregnancy.

What to do in week 21 of pregnancy

Take off all the rings. You will be surprised to find out how many pregnant women have to go to the jeweler to cut their rings because their fingers have swollen around them.

Also read: List of things to do in week 21 of pregnancy

If you find that you are a little tight, do yourself a favor and drop them before it's too late. If you can't stand the thought of breaking away from your wedding ring or other ring of sentimental value, then hang them by a chain and wear them close to your heart.

Week 20 of pregnancy | Week 22 of pregnancy

Tags Pregnancy weeks Pregnancy stretch marks Second trimester of pregnancy