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Pregnancy weeks 20 to 22 shows big changes that have happened whilst the foetus continues to grow. During pregnancy Week 20 you are well into the second trimester of your pregnancy, passed the stage where a miscarriage would be likely and far passed the threat of an ectopic pregnancy. The tell tale sign of pregnancy is the rounded bump of your belly and it continues to grow by a couple of centimetres in week 20 of the pregnancy. The baby’s kicking can now be felt as the little one stretches and flexes in the womb most of the time. Mild lower back ache can still be presenting problems for some women at this stage, but it is nothing to be concerned about because the foetal development is taking place to cause this, a minor inconvenience is all. Some women may feel mild to moderate cramping in their tummy due to the body preparing for the growth of the foetus.
Sleeping can be an issue for some pregnant women at this stage as the bump is still growing and rounding.
Relaxation for a healthy pregnancy is key and you should take time out from stressful situations as soon as they occur. The growing foetus has undergone another growth spurt this week and should now measure around a staggering 25cm. The head of the foetus continues to reduce in size, but it is a lengthy process and although it remains larger than the rest of the body it is now less than half of the size of the rest of the body of compared to a few weeks ago when it was a third greater. The fundus is still in that higher position to the navel meaning that on examination the midwife should be able to feel the fundus with confidence.
The brain is still undergoing major growth spurts and the nerves feeding the sensory organs are strengthening all of the time, feeding and aiding the development of the five senses. The developing layer of fat under the skin is building weekly and continues to alter the appearance of the transparency of the skin.  The vernix caseosa coating is still being produced and continues to protect and cover the downy hairs on the skin.
The sexual organs are still maturing and the female foetus has began to develop the vaginal canal.
The Doppler device will have no problems now picking up and monitoring the heartbeat of the foetus and at around 160 beats per minute, the sound and rhythm is wonderful for mum to hear. Week 21 of pregnancy is developing well and time seems to slow down for mum at this stage of her pregnancy. The rounded belly bump has increased again adding another couple of centimetres to the waistline and a little weight increase of only a couple of pounds can add to that feeling of being heavy and tired.
The first appearance of stretch marks are now evident as the tummy grows a little more each week.
Maternity style clothing is still strongly recommended and  can be very important to ease your mobility and comfort at this stage. The continuing mild to moderate lower back aches can increase from the 21st week of pregnancy and become more persistent. Tummy cramping can fluctuate in severity now, but the frequency of these cramps should start to decrease over time and become less frequent.
The foetus is developing greatly each week of pregnancy and at week 21 you can see the growth spurts. The head of the foetus is now proportionate to the rest of the body as the size and shape has reduced down. The fundus is now well established in the upper navel area and any midwife should be able to feel the fundus. The development of all major organs including the heart, lungs, liver and kidneys is still on going. The development of the brain is continuing with the nerves that supply the five sensory organs continuing to be tweaked and developed further.
The layer of fat underneath the skin flourishes and enhances the transparent appearance of the skin.  The vernix caseosa coating remains to be recycled and reproduced to maintain that protection  and covering of the downy hair growth on the skin. The tiny scalp hairs continue to grow and offer small protection of the head. The eyebrows have now formed properly in the correct position above the eyes, but will continue growing weekly. The arm and leg limbs remain in the correct proportions and continue to develop and grow weekly. The development of the sexual organs continues and this week the female foetus  continues her egg production and growth of the vaginal canal is becoming more defined. The ultrasound at week 21 of pregnancy will continue to display a fascinating view of the foetus.


The measurement of crown to rump length ceases from week 21 of pregnancy and the foetus is from now on measured as a crown to heel length. The heartbeat should be strong and steady with a rhythm of around 120 to 160 beats per minute.
During pregnancy Week 22 of your pregnancy sees little changes with tiredness, fatigue and mood swings. The stretch marks that started to appear on the tummy, upper thighs and bottom are growing and stretching more and they may even be starting to appear on the hips or even the breasts  as they are starting to increase in size and shape during week 22 of pregnancy. By now you should have worked out that comfortable clothing, good posture and relaxation techniques do ease tension and create positive energy. The mild to moderate back pains will be on going for a while into the pregnancy, but relaxing and napping will ease some of this discomfort. It has been said that some women notice swelling of the feet and ankles around this stage of pregnancy, which is perfectly normal.
The head of the foetus is continuing it’s development with the facial features becoming more apparent.
Upon examination by a midwife the fundus, having increased in size is now in an even higher position, yet still above the naval area. The pancreas has started to be developed during this week with an increase in hormone levels within the foetus, all other major organs are continuing to grow, develop and mature. This week the foetus has started the development of the follicles that will hold the tiny eyelashes when they form. The foetus will continue to move, turn and wriggle around in the womb during their waking hours.
The ultrasound scans at 22 weeks pregnant should show a vibrant image of the growing foetus, you may even witness movements if the baby is awake. The ultrasound at the 22nd week of pregnancy will measure  the foetus at roughly 28cm crown to heel length. The heartbeat should remain consistently strong and rhythmic and with the Doppler device allowing all to hear. Pregnancy weeks 20 to 22 is a refreshing time for mum to be and the foetal changes during it’s development is quite rapid.
It has been described by some women as bumping, nudging or full on punching, but all is a sign that baby is awake and healthy. Pregnancy-related Pelvic girdle pain, often referred to as PRGP can cause some women discomfort which is not serious, but can ache for lengthy periods.
Frequent needs to pass urine and just getting into a comfortable position can become stressful and disturb your sleeping patterns. Allow yourself little naps when you feel tired as the growing foetus can demand energy from you. The eyes sit in place at the front of the skull where the eyelids are now beginning to form and develop. They are noted to sleep for around 12 hours in the womb as they continue to develop and grow. The five senses which are sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell are developing well as a result. This week the formation of tiny eyebrows are starting to appear in the correct position above the eye sockets. The toe and finger pads are almost finished developing and the toe and fingerprints are much more defined.
The stretch marks are not always forced to be on the tummy though, they can be seen on the upper thighs and bottom too. Short naps and relaxation is a must now as the developing pregnancy can affect sleeping patterns, causing even more irritability and tiredness when you are awake. Hot water bottles can be used to sooth the aching back muscles and when accompanied by resting in a good position this can be heavenly for some women.
This is little comfort as they can take you aback, but again resting and relaxing will help a lot. The eyes remain at the correct position at the front of the skull, but there are changes happening here now. The meconium is being produced and filtered through the bowel with precision and the urine being produced in the kidneys is functioning properly.


The toe and fingerprints that are very distinct and unique to the foetus have now fully formed. The male foetus will begin the journey of the testicles moving from the abdomen into the scrotum which has developed and formed remarkably over the last week. That heavy and bloated feeling continues as again the waistline has increased by another 3 or 4cm this week. The cramping sensations in the tummy will become less frequent and milder from now on, it’s just a case of waiting it out.
However some women have reported growth of their feet at this stage of pregnancy that remains so permanently. The measurement of the foetus at this stage is around 28cm, but the weigh has increased dramatically and is now around 430 grams.
The eyes remain sealed closed and will do for a while yet, around the 28 to 30 week stage is when they begin to open. The hair follicles on the scalp are increasing in volume and the hair is growing each week. They are in the earliest stages of having a sleeping pattern, even though they have not been born yet. My house flooded last week, we had to get all new drywall and it's drywall dust all over it. It is a truly exciting time when you reach pregnancy weeks 20 to 22 and the weekly pregnancy calendar is bringing you all of the details. Sleeping on your back can help with the comfort, but for me this didn’t work out too well and I put extra pillows in bed and leaned into them.
Although the eyes still remain sealed closed their reactions to light sensitivity can still be observed.
Splaying of the developing fingers and stretching out of the toes is happening more frequently. These eggs are produced in their millions, but will reduce in amount each week nearer to birth.
Short naps can help mum to regain some energy and sleep, so I would strongly advise taking the time to relax and allow dozing off when you can.
The movements of hands, feet, fingers and toes are on going from now and throughout the pregnancy.
So if you are a size 8 or 9 before pregnancy then I hope that this doesn’t happen to you, but be prepared that it can. These hormones are levelling out and certainly adding to your well being in preparation for the pregnancy to develop.
Maternity clothing is a lot more accessible and affordable than when I was pregnant so I would definitely advise making a couple of little purchases to benefit your comfort.
The foetus can now turn fully in the womb and can perform somersaults which can send a whooshing sensation to mummy along with the previous fluttering sensations. The once soaring energy levels are dipping slightly and it can be noticeable with mood swings and fatigue. Blinking is in it’s early stages, but has been recorded during some ultrasound scans at 21 weeks of pregnancy.
The movements and turning of the foetus has increased in frequency as the foetus becomes more competent.
The lips are starting to take shape and within the mouth the tiniest of tooth buds are beginning to develop.
Good relaxation and posture should still be considered as dampening the dizzy and nausea spells must have a positive affect on mum.
Tiny taste buds are starting to develop on the tongue which is developing the taste sense and when the foetus consumes the amniotic fluid there are remnants of tastes available from mums diet consumption.



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