You are 24 weeks pregnant or in your 25th week of pregnancy (counting from the first day of your Last Menstrual Period).
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.
What’s happening to the baby?
- The baby’s movements continue to get more forceful.
- The baby’s hearing is getting more developed. The baby can better detect nuances of your voice and will also react more consistently to different sounds.
- The baby continues to swallow amniotic fluid and this helps the lungs to develop further.
- The baby’s spine is straightening and developing more. Brain development continues to be rapid.
- Your baby is about 21 centimetres long (Crown to rump length) and weighs about 595 grams.
What’s happening to mom?
- Your uterus might now be about 2 inches or so above the belly button. Your doctor will be measuring your fundal height or the size of your uterus that indicates your baby’s size. You might have lots of people remarking on how big or small your belly or baby might be. It is best not to take these remarks too seriously and it is best to listen to your doctor. The doctor looks for consistency of growth. If your baby is too large, it is possible you might have gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes can be common in Indian mothers. The glucose screening test can screen for gestational diabetes.
- You will be putting on steady weight. Remember that you do not have to eat for two but for yourself and the little baby. You need just 300 extra kcal/day. Make sure that these calories come from healthy foods. 10-14 kilograms is the recommended weight gain during pregnancy for Indian mothers, with 1.5 - 2 kilograms per month in the second trimester.
- By now, you must be able to distinctly feel the baby’s movements. An active baby is a healthy baby and that is why around this time, many doctors ask you for the frequency and pattern of your baby’s movements during the appointments. Observe the pattern of your baby’s movements and in case you notice a change in the pattern of movements and a significant decline in the baby’s movements, call your doctor immediately. Your baby might be in distress and there can be risks of being stillborn. The doctor will examine you, hear the baby’s breathing and even do a non-stress test (The doctor will measure the response of the baby’s heart rate to each movement the baby makes as reported by the mother or observed by the doctor on an ultrasound screen).
Checklist for mom
- If you have not already, you might be going for the glucose screening test this week. This is a preliminary test that is given to all pregnant women sometime during the 24th to 28th weeks of pregnancy to check for gestational diabetes. It measures how well your body can process sugar. Indian women, in particular, are highly susceptible to gestational diabetes.
- You might need to take the glucose tolerance test if you get an abnormal result in the glucose screening test. The glucose tolerance test is more advanced and can help your doctor to diagnose whether you have gestational diabetes.
- See a dietician if you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes. You will be put on special diet (low carbohydrate and sugar). Most cases can be managed by diet but in some cases, there might be a need to take insulin.
- At your regular doctor visits, you will be screened for preclampsia or pregnancy induced high blood pressure. Some swelling is normal, but if you see unusually high swelling, call your doctor, it could be signs of preclampsia. Drink more water and reduce the salt intake in your food. It can increase your blood pressure.
- At your next appointment, remember to discuss the baby’s movement patterns. A moving baby is a healthy baby. But there are many reasons you might not be able to detect the baby’s movements (eg., baby’s sleep pattern, you may confuse it with other digestive movements etc.)
- Continue getting exercise. Walking is a great exercise. Fresh air will pep you up as well.
Ideas for dad
- Help your wife minimise her long distance driving. It will be uncomfortable for her and sitting for long periods can cause backache. Run errands for her and maybe you could even drive her to work (or ensure that she has a driver) if she drives long distances to work.
- Plan a weekend getaway or a trip while your wife is still comfortable and energetic. This phase might not last too long.
- Are you reminding your wife to walk? Go walking with her. It will help you relax as well and it will be a good bonding experience as well.
- Wondering if it is safe to drive during pregnancy?
- In a normal pregnancy, it is safe to drive till about 37th week or so.
- But drive carefully and avoid sudden jerks.
- Put on the seat belt carefully below the belly to avoid the belt from pressing on your belly in case the car stops suddenly.
- Make sure that you carry water and some snacks to nibble on in the car.
- Minimise long distance driving.
- Avoid doing long distance driving if you are going out of town or something. It will be uncomfortable and sitting for a long time can cause backaches and you might need to go to the bathroom often. Take the train or fly.
- If you drive, long distance to work—more than an hour or so—try having someone drive you or take your work shuttle (For example: many far flung IT campuses offer free shuttles to their employees). Remember to ask the driver to drive carefully.
- You could even try and see if your company will let you work from home a few days in a week.
Useful Parentree articles for this stage of pregnancy