Pregnancy: Weeks 21 to 24
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During weeks 21 to 24 of pregnancy, your growing fast and gaining weight. Check out this video to learn more about this stage of pregnancy.
Transcript: Weeks 21 through 24 of your pregnancy bring some huge changes for your growing baby. He or she has probably...
Weeks 21 through 24 of your pregnancy bring some huge changes for your growing baby. He or she has probably broken the one-pound mark! By the end of month six, your baby will weigh up to a pound and a half and be approximately eight inches long, the size of a standard letter. Have you ever wondered how your baby eats? Believe it or not, he or she is swallowing several ounces of amniotic fluid each day, an exercise that helps the digestive system mature and provides practice for life post-womb. The taste of your amniotic fluid differs based on what you've eaten, and research has shown that babies who are exposed to certain foods in the womb are more likely to eat them later. See, it's never too early to get your little guy or gal to eat veggies! And speaking of eating, your baby may now get bouts of the hiccups! You might perceive them as a small repetitive and rhythmic movement that occurs for a few minutes at a time and then recedes, a common and harmless occurrence. Although your baby's eyes are still fused shut, he or she can perceive lightness and darkness now. Your little one is also developing a sense of touch. By the end of your sixth month, your baby's transparent, saggy skin will become less so, as your fetus gains weight from fat and growing organs, bones, and muscle. In fact, he or she will start gaining about three ounces a week! The most fun part of this month is that you'll probably be able to hear your baby's heartbeat through a plain old stethoscope (forget that Doppler!) While your baby grows, so do you...and your feet! That growth can be attributed to normal pregnancy swelling and many expectant moms find that their feet balloon up a full size...and stay that way post-birth. That's because relaxin, the hormone that loosens the ligaments in your pelvis, also loosens the ligaments in your feet. Pregnancy hormones may also cause some temporary skin discolorations. You may have noticed a dark line, or linea nigra, which runs between your belly button and pubic bone. Some women may also experience discoloration around the face, known as "the mask of pregnancy," or melasma. And you may have started to notice the literal marks your baby is leaving on your belly, buttocks, thighs, hips, and breasts...stretch marks! These reddish, purplish streaks are caused by tiny tears in the tissue under skin that has been stretched to its limit. More than half of women get stretch marks, and the tendency to do so is genetic. Take heart though: Stretch marks DO fade over time and should be worn as a badge of honor...40-weeks of pregnancy is no easy feat! You're almost done with your second trimester and your little one is getting bigger, and more ready to leave your belly and snuggle in your arms.More »
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During week 17 of pregnancy, your baby’s bones go through an important transformation. Find out how this happens by watching this video.
Transcript: Your fetus' body is continually developing. Here's what's happening this week! The placenta, which nourishes...
Your fetus' body is continually developing. Here's what's happening this week! The placenta, which nourishes your fetus and also removes waste, is ever growing to accommodate your baby's needs. It now contains thousands of blood vessels, which bring life-giving oxygen and nutrients to your little one. Plus, the umbilical cord, which is your baby's lifeline to the placenta, is growing stronger and thicker. Your baby's umbilical cord contains two arteries and one vein surrounded by a white thick gel called Wharton's Jelly. Your fetus weighs about five ounces, and measures five inches now, making your little one the size of a sweet potato! Interestingly, your baby's bones have started to ossify, which means to change from what was previously soft cartilage to what will become hard bone. Some of the first bones to ossify are those in the clavicles and legs. Plus, your baby's sweat glands are forming now, and your little one's joints are now fully active and moving. To see what your fetus is up to next week, check back for a brand new video update!More »
Last Modified: 2014-04-14 | Tags »
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During weeks 9 to 12 of pregnancy your little one will grow rapidly. Find out how your baby will grow in this video.
Transcript: If you've felt like you're asleep on your feet during the past three months, it's little wonder. Your...
If you've felt like you're asleep on your feet during the past three months, it's little wonder. Your rapidly growing baby has just made the progression from embryo to fetus! That means that your little guy or gal is just that...His or her genitals are beginning to show definitive signs of male or female gender. And your baby is bigger, as well. It's grown to about two and a half inches, or the length of a plum. Although that may sound small, it represents a doubling in size during this month alone! During this period, your baby will begin to move his or her arms and legs, but you won't feel these butterfly movements yet. You'll have to wait another two months or so for that! Bones and cartilage are forming inside your baby, and knees, ankles, and elbows are present now. In addition, teeth are developing under your child's gums, although they won't make an appearance until after birth. Guess what else? Your baby is producing urine, digestive juices, white blood cells, hormones and, if it's a boy, testosterone! During the last week of month three, your baby's body systems are almost completely formed. At this point, he or she will enter the maintenance phase, during which all of these systems will continue to mature and grow. While your baby is having a grand time growing, you're probably feeling the sleepy effects. That "drag-your-feet" feeling is a normal and frequent symptom of early pregnancy. The reason is simple: Growing a baby is hard work! While your metabolism and hormone levels have increased, your blood sugar and blood pressure have dropped...leaving you feeling like you ran a marathon. In addition, some of pregnancy's more awkward side effects are probably starting to show: Burping and passing gas. The pregnancy hormone progesterone relaxes the muscles in your digestive tract, allowing more time for nutrients to be absorbed. This slowed digestion is great for your baby, but may leave YOU feeling bloated and gassy. You may also experience bouts of dizziness, also due to progesterone. The hormone increases the blood flow to your baby, but slows the return of blood to you. This can lead to that light-headed feeling. You can often lessen dizziness by sitting with your head lowered between your knees while taking deep breaths. Once the feeling passes, have something to eat or drink. While dizziness and gassiness are no fun, you'll be happy to hear that the nausea, constant urination, and breast-tenderness that were with you in the beginning will usually start to abate by the end of month three. And you may have started to notice a slight rounding of your lower abdomen. After all, your uterus has now reached the size of a grapefruit and is rising up from the pelvis into this area! Congratulations! You've almost completed your first trimester. Your baby is now a fetus and you have 28 more weeks to grow and change together!More »
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Morning sickness is a relatively normal part of pregnancy. Checking out this video will help you in understanding morning sickness.
Transcript: If you're pregnant, you may find yourself bonding with the toilet more than with your baby-to-be. What's...
If you're pregnant, you may find yourself bonding with the toilet more than with your baby-to-be. What's the deal with morning sickness, anyway? First of all, remember that morning sickness is a normal part of most pregnancies, particularly in the first trimester. You're feeling nauseous and vomiting because your new pregnancy hormones, B. like progesterone, are elevated, a healthy sign that your pregnancy is progressing. But that's not to say you should worry if you're sailing through a pregnancy without being sick. Twenty-five percent of women are fortunate enough to avoid morning sickness. While that means that three-quarters of women do experience some morning sickness, it is usually more frequent and severe in women who...have experienced nausea while taking birth control pills...already suffer from motion sickness... are pregnant with multiple children at once...or who have first-degree female relatives who experienced morning sickness. If you're sick of being sick, however, you'll be happy to learn that some tried and true tricks can help ease this unpleasant symptom. Check out other videos in this series to learn about them.More »
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Morning sickness affects lots of pregnant women but it you don’t have to be one of them! Learn how to avoid morning sickness by watching this video.
Transcript: What if we told you it might be possible to prevent that unpleasant morning sickness while you're pregnant?...
What if we told you it might be possible to prevent that unpleasant morning sickness while you're pregnant? Some seventy-five percent of women experience morning sickness. And while you can't eliminate it entirely, a few smart dietary tweaks can help reduce nausea and prevent vomiting. For starters, never let yourself go hungry. When you're starving, your blood sugar dips, which can often contribute to feelings of nausea. In fact, that's probably why you feel worst in the morning-you haven't eaten in hours. Knowing this, it's smart to keep a box of crackers or loaf of bread by your bedside. Nibble first thing in the morning before you rise. In addition, try to eat five to six smaller meals each day, instead of the traditional three large ones. This will stop your blood sugar from spiking, which has a similarly negative effect on your well-being. And, of course, it's wise to avoid anything that smells very strong or is particularly greasy if you're prone to morning sickness. If all the prevention in the world still isn't enough to bypass pregnancy sickness, check out the other videos in this series for tips on finding fast relief.More »
Last Modified: 2014-02-03 | Tags »
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Say goodbye to your morning sickness by learning about several morning sickness treatments you can try. Watch this video for details!
Transcript: Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips...
Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips to help purge morning sickness. If nausea and vomiting have you on your knees, you might want to give the ginger cure a try. Eat a few pieces of fresh gingerroot or take one gram of ginger in capsule form. The chemical compounds that give ginger its zesty taste-gingerol and shogaol-reduce intestinal contractions and inhibit the "vomiting" center in the brain. If you're willing to try a more alternative method, try acupressure to inhibit vomiting. Start by locating the point on your forearm about one and a half inches away from the base of your hand, dead center between the ligaments. Press down on this point with your thumb while you count slowly to ten. Repeat until nausea subsides. If you're still vomiting regularly, suck on ice chips or popsicles, or drink flat ginger ale to stay hydrated and replace lost sugar. And sip slowly! If you drink more than 2 ounces at a time, liquids will bypass your tissues and head to your bladder, sending you straight back to the bathroom.More »
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What is a 4D Sonogram? This can be simply described as a 3-dimensional picture created of your baby inside you during pregnancy. Find out more in this video.
Transcript: You may already be familiar with the sonogram pictures your doctor takes of your baby. Now, modern technology...
You may already be familiar with the sonogram pictures your doctor takes of your baby. Now, modern technology is taking the sonogram to a whole new dimension. A normal sonogram uses a probe to transmit sound waves into your belly. The probe then "listens" for an echoing sound, which it uses to create a three dimensional picture of your fetus. Recently, doctors have discovered an even more advanced viewing technology: The four dimensional sonogram. A 4D sonogram works in the same way as a 3D one, but adds a fourth-dimension-time-to the picture. The result is a live-action "video" of your baby in real time. With a 4D sonogram, you can watch your baby wriggle, smile, suck his thumb, and more. Doctors like 4D technology, too, because the movement patterns can help a doctor quickly discern how a baby is developing. The 4D sonogram is also a valuable diagnostic tool because it can identify problems with a fetus sooner than would otherwise be possible. After a 4D sonogram, your doctor can use a process called volume rendering to take moving images and compile them into still-frame photos. Because 4D sonograms are still relatively new, they are not available in all hospitals - nor are they necessary for most pregnancies. If you're interested in learning more about this viewing technology, talk to your doctor.More »
Last Modified: 2012-11-17 | Tags »
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First trimester sonogram can help a doctor determine the size of your baby and its growth. Find out what kinds of sonography procedures are used in this video.
Transcript: Quick - how is having a baby like submarine warfare? If you said that submarines and doctors both use...
Quick - how is having a baby like submarine warfare? If you said that submarines and doctors both use sonar technology, you move to the head of the class! An ultrasound is a procedure that uses high frequency sound waves to scan your uterus.Those waves are then translated into an image of your developing baby. This technology is very similar sonar, which is used to locate and map things which are underwater, like submarines or sharks. In the first trimester, your doctor may perform a traditional abdominal ultrasound... But more commonly, she'll place sound probes in your vagina for a transvaginal sonogram, which can provide a clearer picture early in pregnancy. During about the sixth week of your pregnancy, either type of ultrasound can confirm that you are indeed pregnant. Your doctor will be able to measure the baby's size at this point, and can therefore estimate its gestational age. If your baby's gestational age is a full 6 weeks, it might be possible to detect your baby's heart rate. This sonogram will also be able to check for an ectopic pregnancy, whereby a fertilized egg implants outside the uterus. During your eighth week, another sonogram is performed. By this time, you should see able to see the heart beating strongly. At any point during the first trimester, a sonogram may also be ordered to check for a suspected miscarriage. And while all of this can be scary, know that most babies are fine and there is no reason to believe that yours won't be, too!More »
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Second trimester sonograms will help your obstetrician make sure that your fetus is developing normally. Watch this video to find out what you and your doctor may see in your second trimester ultrasound.
Transcript: Youre about to enter your second trimester! So what does that mean for your ultrasound schedule? During...
Youre about to enter your second trimester! So what does that mean for your ultrasound schedule? During the last week of the first trimester of pregnancy, many women choose to have an ultrasound as part of a Nuchal Translucency Screening. This test can determine how likely it is that your baby has Down Syndrome or another chromosomal disorder. Whether it is a Nuchal Translucency Screening or not, the first ultrasound you have after week 12 will be able to tell youif youre pregnant with more than one baby. By week 15 or 16, your babys genitals will have formed enough to discern his or her sex. If you want to know what youre having, your next sonogram will be able to tell you with about 90-percent accuracy. Between your 18th and 20th week, youll have the first ultrasound in which you will really be able to see your babys bone structure. This is an important diagnostic sonogram because this is the first time that it will be possible to see structural abnormalities, like a cleft lip, as well as neural tube defects, like spina bifida. While you probably wont have an ultrasound at all of these times, your doctor will definitely be able to deliver a lot of information by your second trimesters conclusion!More »
Last Modified: 2012-09-25 | Tags »
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Your third trimester ultrasound will help you and your doctor prepare for delivery. Find out how by watching this video.
Transcript: Congratulations, you've hit the final stretch! Here's what your sonogrammer will be looking for this...
Congratulations, you've hit the final stretch! Here's what your sonogrammer will be looking for this month. By week 24, your doctor will be able to use a sonogram to determine how your placenta is positioned. In most pregnancies, it will be high in the top of the uterus. Sometimes, however, a placenta will be "low lying," which can be a concern. That's because, if the placenta does not move up from the bottom of the uterus, it can cover the cervix and make delivery difficult. This is known as placenta previa. During the last trimester of your pregnancy, a sonogram will also be able to determine which way your baby is positioned. This is important in the weeks leading up to pregnancy, as the baby should be resting with his or her head down. A sonogram can confirm that this is the case, and can also show if the baby is breeched, or lying feet first. During the last trimester, though, sonograms will mostly be used to determine that the baby is growing appropriately. However, if your delivery is overdue by a week or more, a sonogram can also be ordered to confirm the well being of your baby.More »
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The nuchal translucency test is important for pregnant women to have in order to determine certain illneses your baby may be at risk for. Watch this video to learn more about the test.
Transcript: The Nuchal Translucency Screening can be both confusing and scary to a mom-to-be? The Nuchal Transluscency...
The Nuchal Translucency Screening can be both confusing and scary to a mom-to-be? The Nuchal Transluscency Screening, or NT, is a pre-natal ultrasound scan which assesses your babys risk of being born with certain illnesses, including chromosomal abnormalities like Down Syndrome and certain heart problems. If you choose to have an NT test, it will be performed during weeks 11 to 13 of your pregnancy. Heres how an NT works: An ultrasound technician will start by determining your babys gestational age by measuring him from crown to rump. Then, shell measure the thickness of the fluid under the skin at the back of your babys neck, the area known as the nuchal fold. When a baby has greater amounts of fluid built up in the nuchal fold, the clear space on the sonogram behind the neck is larger than average. Babies who have chromosomal abnormalities generally exhibit this build up of fluid, but not every baby who exhibits a buildup of fluid behind their neck will have an illness. A complete assessment needs to take into account several additional factors. In addition to the Nuchal ultrasound, most women will provide a blood sample for screening. The results of these tests, plus the babys gestational age and the mothers age, are all incorporated into the results. The mothers age is a factor because women who are older than 30 are significantly more likely to deliver a baby with Down Syndrome. Once you have the results, you will need your doctor to help you interpret them. Remember: The Nuchal Translucency Screening does not definitively say if there is a problem with your baby. Instead, an NT test shows youwith about 70 to 80 percent accuracy how likely it is that the baby has a genetic abnormality. If it looks like your baby may have a problem, your doctor might recommend that you undergo amniocentesis, which requires taking a sample of your amniotic fluid. But because amniocentesis comes with a 1 in 200 chance of miscarriage, many women choose not to undergo this step. A Nuchal Translucency Screening can provide critical information about your babys health. Ultimately though, how you use that information, and whether you want the test at all, is a personal decision.More »
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Gestational diabetes testing is recommended for all expectant mothers. Left untreated, the condition may cause harm to both mother and child. Watch this video to learn more about gestational diabetes testing.
Transcript: Between 2 and 5 percent of all pregnant women get gestational diabetes, which is why all pregnant women...
Between 2 and 5 percent of all pregnant women get gestational diabetes, which is why all pregnant women should get screened for it. Gestational diabetes occurs when a woman's hormones reduce the effectiveness of her insulin, which causes high blood sugar. This happens only in pregnant women and is usually diagnosed between the 24th and 28th weeks of pregnancy. If left untreated, gestational diabetes can result in high birth weight, low blood sugar, or respiratory difficulties in your baby. There is an entire video dedicated to explaining gestational diabetes, its potential consequences, and how to manage the illness, if you'd like to learn more about the condition itself. Because gestational diabetes has no discernable symptoms, it's important that every pregnant woman screen for the illness. To screen for the condition, your doctor will perform an oral glucose intolerance test, also known as a glucose challenge test. The test requires you to drink a very sugary liquid in about five minutes. One hour later, a blood sample will be taken to determine if your glucose levels are high enough to signal the possible presence of gestational diabetes. A positive result on this test - glucose levels above 140 milligrams per deciliter - does not mean that you necessarily have gestational diabetes. What it does mean, however, is that it is likely that you do, and that you'll have to undergo another test, called a glucose tolerance test. This screening requires you to drink a larger concentration of the glucose solution, and then have your blood tested every hour for three hours. If this test comes back positive, you do have gestational diabetes and will have to adjust your pregnancy diet accordingly. Luckily, the condition is entirely controllable, and, when taken care of, will cause no harm to your baby. You can find additional information on how to manage gestational diabetes in other videos on Pregnancy Health Guru dot com.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-04 | Tags »
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