Table of contents:
Week of gestation: 17 weeks
Equals to month: end of 4th month
Equals to days: 113 to 119 days of gestation
In the 17th week of pregnancy, the baby's development is marked by the formation of fatty tissue that has the function of preserving energy and heat, in addition to protecting the organs. The respiratory system is formed, but the pulmonary alveoli continue to develop.
During this week, the woman's breasts may be more sensitive and the areolas darker. Symptoms of heartburn, burning sensation, constipation and gum tenderness and headache may continue, and back pain and loss of balance may ensue due to increased curvature of the spine and shifting of the body's center of gravity.
In the 17th week of pregnancy, the baby is producing adipose or fatty tissue, which is important for storing energy, producing and retaining heat in the body, in addition to protecting the organs, and is formed first in the face, neck, breast and wall stomach and then back, shoulders, arms, legs and chest. Muscles are also developing and maturing.
The baby's respiratory system is already formed, with the lungs, trachea, bronchi and bronchioles, but the pulmonary alveoli are still forming.
The baby makes more and more sucking and swallowing movements, drinking the amniotic fluid, and these reflexes will be fully matured by the 36th week of pregnancy.
At this stage of pregnancy, the umbilical cord is already thicker and longer in order to carry nutrients to the baby and the placenta is expanding and increasing circulation to provide more nutrients and oxygen to the baby.
Baby size and weight
Baby size at 17 weeks gestation is about 19.6 centimeters, measured from head to toe, and about 13.5 centimeters from head to butt, equivalent to the size of a pear. Baby weight this week is about 179 grams.
Changes in a woman's body
In the 17th week of pregnancy, the belly is already noticeable, the waist acquires a more rounded appearance, the breasts may be more sensitive and the areolas may become darker. Symptoms of heartburn, burning sensation in the stomach, constipation, gum tenderness, and headache may continue.
At this stage of pregnancy, a woman may experience some back pain, in the lumbar region that can radiate to the legs, due to the growth of the belly and increased curvature of the spine, which can compress the sciatic nerve. This change in the curvature of the spine can also alter the body's center of gravity, and the woman may lose some of her body balance.
Care during the 17th week
In the 17th week of pregnancy, some precautions are important to help alleviate the discomforts that may arise, such as:
- Heartburn or a burning sensation in the stomach: avoid eating fried foods, spicy or very spicy foods and eating large meals, and eating in small amounts at smaller intervals of 2 to 3 hours can help alleviate this discomfort. See other tips on how to relieve heartburn in pregnancy;
- Constipation: eat more fiber in the form of whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and drink at least 8 glasses of water a day to keep your body hydrated and exercise physical exercises regularly recommended by the doctor, to help improve bowel movements, can help alleviate this discomfort;
- Sensitivity in gums: floss regularly and use a soft toothbrush, brushing your teeth gently so as not to hurt your gums. In addition, it is recommended to consult the dentist to assess the he alth of the mouth and teeth;
- Headache: Placing a cold compress on the forehead or back of the neck and lying down, resting, and relaxing in quiet surroundings can help relieve discomfort. If the headache does not improve, you should inform the doctor who can guide the use of medication. However, if the headache does not improve or is constant, seek medical help immediately as it could be a sign of high blood pressure. Learn more about headache in pregnancy;
- Back pain: do not stand for a long time, when sitting, avoid crossing your legs and use a pregnant girdle to support your belly and back, can help improve back pain. In addition, it is important to do exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles of the back, such as yoga or pilates, for example. Check out the best exercises to do in pregnancy;
- Loss of balance: Exercises can also help improve body balance. Also, it is recommended to wear comfortable shoes and avoid wearing high heels.
During the entire pregnancy, it is important to have prenatal consultations, follow medical recommendations and take folic acid or supplements recommended by the obstetrician. Find out how prenatal care is done.
In addition, eating a nutritious and balanced diet, including fresh fruits and vegetables, ensures the supply of essential nutrients for the baby's development and helps to control weight gain during pregnancy. It is also important to do the physical activities approved by the doctor as they allow you to control your weight better, improve sleep quality and strengthen your muscles.