Second Trimester of Pregnancy
Changes in Baby
Your baby uses the second trimester to grow and mature most of his body systems. His heartbeat is strong, and can be heard by a stethoscope around 23 weeks. He is covered in a downy hair that protects his skin from the fluid he is in. His skin is also wrinkled and covered by vernix caseosa, a creamy substance that helps protect his skin.
By the end of the second trimester your baby can see, hear and respond to you. You may notice when she has hiccoughs, and you will begin to notice all her movements, which are coordinated and intentional as early as 19 weeks. She has grown finger and toe nails as well as hair, eyelashes and eyebrows.
Changes in mom
The second trimester is generally easier than the first, with an increased amount of energy, increased appetite and decrease in nausea. There is less tenderness in the breasts, but you may begin to feel tenderness or pain in the pelvis from stretching ligaments.
Most women feel better emotionally during the second trimester, with a greater feeling of well-being. You will probably find you have an increased interest in babies and motherhood, you may even be daydreaming about what your baby will be like. Many women continue to look deeper into who they are and who they want to be.
If you didn't gain weight in the first trimester, you will notice it now. On average, women gain up to a pound a week during the second trimester. Although this is due to the pregnancy, many women still struggle with feeling comfortable gaining weight. As your belly begins to grow you may find yourself struggling with your changing identity.