Pregnancy Week 23

Howbig is your baby?
The measurement is now at around 11.38 inches (28.9cm) and your baby isnow weighing approximately 1.10 pounds (501g).

How big are you?
Your uterus should now be about 1.18 inches (3cm) above your bellybutton andabout 9.05 inches (23cm) above your pubic symphysis this week.

Your total weight gainat this stage of your pregnancy should by now be about 12 to 15 pounds (5.5kg-6.8kg)

How is your baby developing and growing
Your baby’s body will start getting plumper and wrinkled and any lanugo hairmay start to turn darker at this time. His/Her eyebrows and eyelids are well formedby now. Over the next month your baby is going to gain considerable weight, andwill be weighing almost double what it is at the moment.

The three bones which make up your babys middle ear – the hammer, anvil and stirrup- are all starting to harden, this means that sound transmission is now possible.Although your baby may be able to transmit sound, there is no way of knowing ifyour baby is able to interpret this sound at this point (although the brain is developingrapidly, it may still be too immature to deal with the sounds).

The important organs which your baby uses to produce hormones are developing nicely.One hormone in particular, insulin, is being produced by the pancreas. Insulin helpsyour baby break down and use sugar. When a baby is exposed to high blood sugar levelsthe pancreas will respond by increasing the blood-insulin level.

Changes In You
At this point in your pregnancy some of your friends and family may say youlook like you are carrying twins and others may say you are way too small for howfar along you are. You need not concern yourself with what they are saying – rememberevery pregnancy is different and babies grow at different rates.

Your healthcare provider will be measuring you and weighing you at every visit andhe/she will be the first to pick up on any problems. Keep your weight gain steady and all should be fine.

Two of the side affects of the rapid growth your baby is making is round ligament pain and sciatic nerve pain. Round ligament pain is caused by the stretchingof the ligaments which support the uterus, while sciatic nerve pain is caused bypressure being place on the sciatic nerve. Both of these are a result of your growinguterus and baby.


This Week with Dr Miriam Stoppard

Your Nutrition
Protein plays an important part in your pregnancy and development of your baby.It is important that during the second and third trimesters that you ensure your intake of protein in yourdiet is meeting your requirements. You should be aiming to get in 75g of proteina day, and there are a wide variety of protein sources to help you do this.

One nutritional intake you may need to watch during your pregnancy is your sodium(salt). Should you consume too much sodium, it may cause you to retain water, whichin turn will lead to swelling,bloating and discomfort.

Foods to avoid whichcontain lots of sodium include: pickles, potato chips and salted nuts.

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Pregnancy Week 23