The second trimester of pregnancy is perhaps the most enjoyable for most women. It is a period of significant changes for both the mother and the growing baby. During this trimester, the baby undergoes rapid growth and development, while you will experience a range of physical and emotional changes.
- Baby bump – Perhaps one of the most obvious sign that you are entering the second stage of your pregnancy is that your baby bump will start to show and become noticeable. As your uterus expands to make room for the baby, your belly grows. Between 16-20 weeks, your body will start showing your baby’s growth. For some women, their bump may not be noticeable until the end of the second trimester and even into the third trimester.
- Baby’s movements – The most gratifying and delightful development in the second trimester is the baby’s kicks and gentle movements. Some women say it feels like a flutter in their lower abdomen or butterflies in their stomach. Others describe it as a bumping or nudging, a twitch, a growling stomach or a bubble bursting.
- Breast changes – Your breast will continue to grow. These changes will prepare you for breastfeeding.
- Stretch marks – As your pregnancy develops, you may find that you experience changes to your skin. Many women develop stretch marks during their pregnancy. As your baby grows, the skin over your belly stretches causing stretch marks to form. They usually appear on your stomach or sometimes on your upper thighs or breasts.
- Shortness of breath – Feeling short of breath during pregnancy is quite common. Your breathing might be affected by the hormonal changes and physical growth. Light exercise such as walking or swimming may make you feel less breathless.
- Weight Gain: The mother typically gains weight during the second trimester as the foetus grows and develops, as the uterus and placenta grow bigger, as the body creates extra blood and fluid. In the second trimester, the weight gain increases with 1.5 kilograms every month. The weight gain is essential for providing the foetus with the nutrients and energy needed for growth and development.
- Emotional changes – Although the mood fluctuations continue even during the second trimester, mood swings are reduced. Your body is changing rapidly, which can also affect how you feel, increase anxiety levels.
The second trimester of pregnancy is a time of significant changes for both you and your growing baby. It is important for the mother to maintain regular prenatal care and consult the doctor to ensure the health and wellbeing of both yourself and your baby.
As long as your gynaecologist says your baby is developing properly and your pregnancy weight gain is healthy and on track, there’s no cause for concern.