17 Weeks Pregnant

By this week in your pregnancy, you will find yourself more relaxed and feeling more comfortable. Your body has adjusted to the hormonal changes as well as the physical changes. From now on, each week and month will bring new feelings and sensations—some good, some not as pleasant.

You will be more sure of those tiny fluttering movements in your belly, and be treasuring every one.

Baby’s Development

By now the baby will be approximately 6-1/2 inches long and weigh in at about 4 ounces which is about the size of a grapefruit.  Right now, your baby has some pretty fantastic changes occurring:

  • He or she can open their mouth and yawn when sleepy
  • Soft cartilage will be replaced with bone
  • Movements are continuing and baby can stretch, and curl his or her arms
  • An occasional breathing movement may be practiced
  • Hearing is more defined, making it easier for your baby to be startled by loud noises

Changes With You

By now you should be showing that baby bump. The abdomen is growing and your abdominal organs will soon start shifting in order to make room for the baby. The top part of the uterus has become more rounded which creates that classic belly.

Sciatic nerve pain may also be a problem as the uterus grows. The sciatic nerve  runs down from the back, across the buttocks, and down the back of the leg into the heel. Thanks to the pressure of shifting pelvic structures and a growing uterus, it can be easy to place pressure on the nerve—which can cause tremendous pain.  There isn’t a lot to relieve it unfortunately.  Some physicians can suggest stretching exercises that may help, or some mothers may even seek out physical therapy.

You should continue taking your prenatal vitamins and eating a balanced diet. This isn’t always possible for some women, so taking the vitamins becomes more important than ever.

What To Expect

Weight gain can take a jump around this week, so do your best to maintain a healthy lifestyle. After all, it’s easy to indulge when you feel so much better than you did previously, but take it easy.

At every doctor’s visit you will have your blood pressure tested, along with urine tests and weight monitoring. These are all done to help protect the health of the baby.  You may also experience swelling of the hands, or feet after standing for long periods, nasal stuffiness, backaches or the occasional Braxton-Hicks (false) contractions.

Tips/Advice

You may consider taking a quick vacation before the baby’s birth. Since this is the time that most women feel their best, traveling is most advised now.  Enjoying those lazy days before baby’s birth are special, so plan something for yourself.


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