What to Expect In the Nine Months of Pregnancy (Part 2 of 3)


What to Expect In the Nine Months of Pregnancy Part 2

In this post, we discuss the 2nd trimester of pregnancy—what to expect and what precautions to take to ensure a healthy pregnancy.

 

MONTH FOUR

Your body is…

…Requiring more blood, with greater blood volume and flow going to the skin, kidneys and uterus.

…Adjusting to the continued growth of your uterus. During this period, your uterus has grown so large that it extends out of the pelvis and into your abdomen.

You can expect…

…Some relief from frequent urination because the pressure of your uterus upon your bladder has been displaced to the abdomen.

…Blotchy skin, darkening of your nipples, and prominence of your veins because of the increased blood flow. Some doctors though attribute blotchy skin to dietary deficiencies.

…To feel early movements of your baby. They can be felt as fluttering butterflies or gentle bubbles in your tummy.

You need to watch out for…

…Heavy vaginal bleeding which may be indicative of a miscarriage. Although this is not common, occurrence is still possible. If heavy bleeding should develop, you should be checked out by a doctor immediately. Possible causes of miscarriages in the second trimester with heavy vaginal bleeding as a symptom include placenta previa (wherein the placenta covers the cervix) and placental abruption (the placenta tears away from the uterine lining).

…Preterm Labor, which may occur especially in pregnant women who have a history of a previous preterm birth, twinning and multiple pregnancies, or have developed an infection.

…Preterm  Premature Rupture of Membranes (PPROM) may occur as a result of an infection which may lead to preterm delivery. At this period of the pregnancy, terbutaline and other medications may be given to stop labor.

…Preeclampsia, which is characterized by hypertension, proteinuria and/or rapid swelling edema of the legs, hands and face. Other symptoms include severe, persistent headache, “floaters” in the eyes, loss of vision, and severe pain in the abdominal area or the right side. This is considered a medical emergency which requires immediate treatment.

You might start seeing…

…Your baby bump is now the size of a head of cabbage.

…With blotchy skin and prominent veins as a result of increased blood flow to your skin.

…More of feeling, baby’s first movements which is akin to the fluttering of butterflies inside your belly.

…A hearty appetite. However, don’t nauseate yourself with large meals. Just eat small, frequent meals.

 

MONTH FIVE

Your body is…

…Adjusted to your growing baby around this time as there will be fewer discomforts.

…More rounded at the belly. The size of your baby bump at this time is about the size of an artichoke.

You can expect…

…Relief from morning sickness. Yes, by this time, you are completely free of the nausea and vomiting.

…Nosebleeds and bleeding gums because of the increasing blood volume during pregnancy, certainly nothing to be alarmed about since this is normal.

…Because your uterus has poked into your abdomen, you can expect some pelvic pain or constipation to develop. You may also experience some indigestion or heartburn after eating.

…To feel more pronounced movements from your baby. Expect some gliding movement inside your tummy as your baby settles in or a kick or two.

…Some fluid to leak from your breasts. This is a good sign that your breast tissues are maturing and that you are starting to produce “first milk” or colostrums.

You need to watch out for…

…Heavy vaginal bleeding. While uncommon in the fifth month, miscarriage may still occur due to early labor, incompetent cervix, placenta previa and placental abruption. Bleeding may be treated in Rh Negative women with injection of the immunoglobulin RhoGAM.

…Preterm Labor, especially in women who previously have had preterm birth, twinning and multiple pregnancies, or have developed an infection.

…Preterm  Premature Rupture of Membranes (PPROM) may develop due to an infection, thus causing preterm delivery. Terbutaline and other medications are needed to halt the progression of labor.

…The symptoms of Preeclampsia, particularly severe, persistent headache, “floaters” in the eyes, loss of vision, and severe pain in the abdominal area or the right side. If you experience any of these symptoms, you should be brought to the hospital immediately.

You might start seeing…

…Some swelling in the legs because of the increased blood volume and fluid retention. To relieve swelling, simply sit down and keep your head elevated.

…Varicose veins. They develop because of the effects of progesterone on your leg veins, which enlarge and relaxes them so as to accommodate the increased blood flow.

…Stretch marks. As your baby grows, your belly becomes distended, causing the skin to stretch and produce those grayish silver or sometimes livid, red streaks.

 

MONTH SIX

Your body is…

…Gaining weight steadily as your baby grows inside your womb.

…Going to see more relief from the discomforts of the previous month.

…Going to find relief from the frequent urination because, although your uterus is large for your pelvis, much of its bulk now lies in your abdomen. Thankfully, your womb is not that big as to cause discomforts when you eat or breathe. However, you may still experience some constipation and heartburn.

…Going to be more energetic now and, in some cases, you may experience an increase in your libido.

You can expect…

…Nosebleeds and bleeding gums will still persist at this time due to the ever increasing blood volume.

…Bouts of heartburn and constipation after eating.

…More vigorous movements from your baby.

…Leaking fluids from your breasts to continue during this month.

…Hemorrhoids to develop due to constipation.

You need to watch out for…

…Heavy vaginal bleeding. An uncommon occurrence in the sixth month, miscarriage may develop due to early labor, incompetent cervix, placenta previa and placental abruption. Immunoglobulin RhoGAM may be given to women who are Rh Negative who have bleeding.

…Bladder Infections. Changes caused by hormones to the urinary tract may predispose a woman to bladder infections. In addition, compression of the bladder by the growing uterus may prevent complete urine emptying, so that bacteria accumulates in the urine, leading to infection.

…Preterm Labor may develop in women with prior multiple pregnancies or who have an infection.

…Preterm  Premature Rupture of Membranes (PPROM) more often occurs due to infection, which leads to preterm delivery. Progression of labor may be halted by Terbutaline and other medications.

…The symptoms of Preeclampsia, namely severe, persistent headache, “floaters” in the eyes, loss of vision, and severe pain in the abdominal area or your right side. Seek immediate medical attention if any of these symptoms develop.

You might start seeing…

…Easy fatigability. This is due to the weight of your growing baby which can be tiring to carry in your womb. In some women, the size of the uterus may be so large that it presses upon the diaphragm and rib cage, so that you are easily breathless.

…Varicose veins, which will persist due to the increased blood flow in both mother and baby.

…Leg cramps and swelling due to the retention of blood and fluids in your lower limbs.

…Stretch marks to increase as your belly gets bigger.

 


 

In the last trimester, your body will go through changes to prepare itself for labor. We also give you some tips on how to take care of your body after giving birth.

Know what to expect for months seven, eight, and nine in Part 3 of this blog post.

 


All material provided on this website is for your information only and should not substitute professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.