Pregnancy Week By Week : 19 Weeks Pregnant - What To Expect
Welcome mommies to yet another fantastic week of your pregnancy . The 19th week is quite an important one as far as your baby's developm...
Vernix formation for added protection
By the 19th week of your pregnancy, your baby's skin has developed a sort of varnish or a protective layer over the skin known as vernix caseosa. It has cheese-like texture and is greasy. This white covering is made up of oil from the baby's glands, lanugo, and dead skin cells on its body. The function of the vernix is to provide protection to the sensitive skin from the fluids in the amniotic sac. If the covering is not there, the amniotic fluid would make your baby's skin wrinkly and creased.
Kicks and punches
If you weren't able to feel the fetal movements last week, you may be surprised at a kick or punch this week. Your baby is moving around and is practicing various moves with its arms and legs. The baby is still not too big for you to feel every movement, but once in a while, you may experience a kick inside you.
Almost all the critical organs of your baby have formed and are functioning by now. This week it's the turn of the lungs. The airwaves in the lungs, also known as bronchioles are beginning to develop so that your baby can have mature lungs within a few more days.
Sleep vs activity
The bones and muscles in your baby's tiny body have become stronger and harder. Therefore, they are capable of generating solid movements. However, your baby is asleep for almost 20 hours a day, a habit that will continue for a few weeks after birth. Another surprising thing is that your baby will often be active when you are not. You will be able to feel its movements mainly when you are dozing off at night.
Size of your little one
Your little one has grown quite a bit and is now the size of a really big mango. Its little body is almost seven and a half inches long measuring from head to toe. It is gaining weight and presently stands at 7 ounces.
Body Changes & Common Symptoms
Dry itchy skin: By the 19th week of your pregnancy, you may notice a marked change in your skin texture. It tends to become dry and flaky. You may feel itchy too because of the dryness. This change occurs due to an increase in your metabolism. Factor that leads to the change in skin is an increased blood flow in your body. Oil massage and the use of moisturizers can help alleviate the condition to a large extent. It is also important to consume a lot of fluids to fight the dryness.
Heat sensitivity: During this time of your pregnancy, your body becomes more sensitive to heat and there is a high chance of dehydration if you don't provide your body with 3 to 4 liters of water each day. The initial symptoms of dehydration will be dry chapped lips and dryness of the tongue.
Cramps are getting worse: Leg cramps are expected and very common during the second trimester of your pregnancy. These cramps and back aches can keep you awake at night. The cramps can occur randomly any part of the day, but they are seemingly more prominent at night. Compression of the blood vein in your leg may be the culprit, or your leg muscles may get fatigued and cause pain. Whatever the reason for these stubborn cramps, try to keep your legs in a slightly elevated position while sleeping by putting a pillow underneath each leg. Also, avoid standing in one position for a long time.
Difficulty in bowel movements: The nutrient supplements that you consume during your pregnancy can affect your bowel movements. Sometimes iron supplements can cause constipation. Speak to your doctor about the various ways in which you can lessen the discomfort by means of diet and pregnancy-friendly medications.
- Keep the caffeine away: If you are a staunch coffee fanatic, you may have to sacrifice the dark beans for the time being. Caffeine increases blood pressure and also has an adverse effect on the baby inside you. It raises the heart rate which can cause restlessness and add to the discomfort of your cramps and aches.
- Avoid aerated drinks and sugar-rich beverages: Soft drinks score highest in this category and it is advised to bid adieu to these beverages till the end of your pregnancy. These can cause dehydration in your body, while you think that the liquid will make up for the fluid requirement in your body. It is best to stick to water and fresh fruit juice without added sugar.
- Keep your skin lubricated: A generous application of petroleum jelly or a rich body lotion can keep your skin moisturized and help you with your dry skin condition. An oil massage before the bath can also help retain the moisture in your skin and fight the flakiness. You can use aloe vera on the areas that feel itchy.
- Don't expose yourself to loud noises: If it's the festive season and there are loud firecrackers bursting everywhere, remain inside the house as much as possible. During the 19th week of your pregnancy, your baby can hear well and loud sounds will startle the little one. Exposure to continuous loud noises can affect your baby's hearing in the long run. If you live in a noisy area, it is a good idea to invest in noise canceling materials in the rooms of your home or to go away and live with a close relative who lives in a comparatively calmer place.
This week calls for a lot of sacrifices and changes on the part of the mother, but remember it is in the best interest of your baby. As difficult as they may seem, avoiding certain things and taking some necessary precautions is a must. And hopefully, in a few months, everything will be worth the effort.
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