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Pregnancy - Week 14

Parentree-editors 2008-10-29 00:30:48

You are 13 weeks pregnant or in your 14th week of pregnancy (counting from the first day of your Last Menstrual Period).

Congratulations, your first trimester is over and you are now embarking on your second trimester.

Keep in mind that this information is approximate. Each pregnancy is different and growth rates vary.  For variations and details, please talk to your doctor.

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What’s happening to the baby?

  • Your baby is continuing to grow and mature.
  • The brain is continuing to develop and can cause the movement of many finer muscles in the body now.
  • Many of the baby’s organs have started their work. The liver starts producing bile to cleanse the blood, the spleen starts producing red blood corpuscles and the thyroid glands have started producing hormones.
  • The baby can use facial muscles and start frowning and make other faces.
  • Your baby is about 7 centimetres long (Crown to rump length) and weighs about 28 grams.

What’s happening to mom?

  • Congrats! Your first trimester is over and you are starting your second trimester.  Your risk of miscarriage has now reduced and you can be more at ease. You are also feeling much better since your early pregnancy woes like nausea, fatigue and frequent urination have now subsided (in most cases).
  • But other pregnancy woes like frequent heartburn might start bothering you now.
  • Your growing baby and lack of nausea are boosting your appetite. Read our articles on diet during pregnancy and continue to eat healthy - lots of protein, calcium and iron rich foods to support your rapidly growing baby.
  • Also, most women experience an increased sex drive. In most cases in a low-risk pregnancy, sex is very safe since the baby is well protected (by your abdomen, by amniotic fluid, your mucous plug). Read up about when sex is safe and when it is not during pregnancy.
  • No wonder the second trimester called the “honeymoon phase” of pregnancy. Make the most of it.

 

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Checklist for mom

  • Your delicate first trimester is over and now you can consider telling folks at work or other friends and family, if you have not already.  Discuss this with your spouse and share the good news.
  • Take steps to avoid heartburn: Eat smaller meals more often, Do not sleep immediately after eating, avoid very greasy and spicy food that you are not used to eating. Read more about heartburn during pregnancy.
  • Ask your doctor in the next appointment if you need to take any nutritional supplements (like iron or calcium). Also find out how best to take them - before or after food, with water etc.  For example, it is said that taking iron tablets or foods rich in iron with vitamin C or foods rich in vitamin C, will increase your absorption of iron. So many women take iron tablets or that palak paneer, with orange juice. Discuss this with your doctor. Take these supplements at the same time every day and make it part of some routine.
  • Plan a celebration for this important milestone - dinner or perhaps a movie.
  • If you are feeling up to it, this is the time to go for that trip (before the baby comes). Plan a trip or a weekend getaway. Discuss this with your husband and remember to check with the doctor first.
  • 10-14 kilograms is the recommended weight gain during pregnancy for Indian mothers, with 1.5 - 2 kilograms per month in the second trimester. Remember, the extra energy that is required is only 300 kcal/day and any consumption above this will only add empty calories and weight to the mother.   The usual Indian advice is to eat for you and for the little growing baby and not necessarily for two adults.  Focus on nutrition and not the quantity of food.
  • If you have not already, talk to your doctor and schedule the Maternal Serum Marker test or AFP that all women need to take. This is a blood test that is taken between the 15th to 18th weeks and screens for Down syndrome or other birth defects. If the test shows abnormal results, then it does not mean that the baby has birth defects. It just requires further detailed diagnostic tests like amniocentesis
  • If you are above 35, and have a history of birth defects in your family, then your doctor might want you to take the amniocentesis test anyway even without waiting for the results of the AFP test. Amniocentesis is the definitive diagnosis for Down syndrome and other birth defects and can be taken from 15th to 18th weeks. Discuss this with your doctor and spouse. This test is more intrusive and involves a specialist taking a sample of your amniotic fluid with a syringe. 

Ideas for dad

  • Plan a celebration for this important milestone - dinner or perhaps a movie.
  • If your wife is feeling better, this is the time to go for that trip (before the baby comes). Plan a trip or a weekend getaway. Discuss this with your wife. Remember to check with the doctor first.
  • Read up about when sex is safe and when it is not during pregnancy.  Most women experience an increased sex drive at this time.  If your wife is up to it and is showing an interest, then this might be a good time to have sex.  If she is still feeling sick, then do be patient.
  • If the doctor has advised nutritional supplements for mom, do participate and remind her to take them.
  • You may want to get the camera out and take some pictures of mom so you can preserve them for posterity

Other tidbits

  • If you are a movie buff, this is the time to go for a lot of movies in the movie halls. Later in the pregnancy, you might not be able to sit for a long time and need to go to the bathroom very often. Once the baby comes, it might be impossible to go at least for a few months. So, seize the opportunity and book your tickets.

Useful Parentree articles for this stage of pregnancy

 

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Pregnancy - Week by week

See what's happening with baby and mom
Checklists - things to do, shopping, tests, scans, doctor visits
Ideas for dad
Interesting information and facts

 


 

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