Your Baby's Development
Your baby is now covered with a white, waxy substance
called vernix caseosa, which helps prevent delicate skin from becoming chapped
or scratched. Premature babies may be
covered in this cheesy coating at delivery.
Your baby is still tiny, but this week brings the development of brown fat, which
will help keep your baby warm after birth. During the last trimester, your baby will
add more layers of fat for warmth and protection.
You might feel your baby's first movements. This
often happens between weeks 18 and 20. These first movements are known as quickening,
and they may feel like butterflies in your stomach or a growling stomach. Later in
your pregnancy, you'll feel kicks, punches, and possibly hiccups! Each baby has different
movement patterns, but if you're concerned or if the movements have decreased in frequency
or intensity, talk to your doctor.
Many women wonder around this time whether having sex
will hurt their developing baby, and the answer is no. Sex is considered safe at all
stages of pregnancy, as long as your pregnancy is normal. But that doesn't necessarily
mean you're going to want to have it. Many expectant women find that their desire
for sex fluctuates during the various stages of pregnancy, depending on their fatigue,
growing size, anxiousness over the birth, and a host of other body changes. Keep the
lines of communication with your partner open as these issues
come up. Even though you may both be preoccupied with the baby, it's also important
to have some "together time."
PREGNANCY CALENDAR: A week-by-week
- Trimester 1
- Trimester 2
- Trimester 3