My dear mother, Being 18 weeks pregnant, Something extraordinary happens in the womb. The silence I have become accustomed to suddenly begins to fill with sounds and melodies. I can now hear your heartbeat and sometimes the noises from your stomach. I can also hear strong sounds coming from outside the womb.
You are now 18 weeks pregnant, that is, in the fifth month of pregnancy, where the fetus grows every day little by little.
This stage is considered one of the most enjoyable stages for the mother. She feels every day the development of her fetus. She increases her emotional attachment to it and her sense of existence, especially since it now begins to hear and distinguish sounds.
From the 18th week of pregnancy, the mother can feel the movement of her baby, and she can also know its type and start choosing the appropriate names for it.
At 18 weeks pregnant, Your baby is about the size of A CUCUMBER.
Length: 14.2 cm
You are in the second trimester
You are in the fifth month
The remaining number of weeks: 22
When the fetus reaches the eighteenth week, it has almost reached the middle of its life journey in the womb of its mother, and it experiences some growth symptoms such as:
- His body and brain are noticeably enlarging, and his face is gaining eyelids and eyelashes.
- His various vital systems begin to function relatively completely, such as his digestive system, for example.
- The covering of nerves begins with a special material to protect them.
- Gaining the ability to taste as a result of the growth of his taste buds.
- It is a greasy substance on the tips of his fingers, whether in the feet or hands, and it is formed to form his fingerprint, which distinguishes him from others throughout his life.
- The appearance of fingernails on both hands and feet.
- The genitals of the fetus are largely complete and the ability to determine whether he is male or female.
Fetal activity in its mother’s womb at the eighteenth week
At this stage in the life of this young plant, he tries to prove his existence and announce to everyone about himself through his gentle movements or kicks in his mother’s womb.
He can also hear the sounds around him and interact with them through some movements that only his mother can feel and even distinguish some of these voices, so the mother is advised to talk to him and sing to him during this period.
- The fetus sucks its finger at this stage, and this movement may continue until after its birth.
- The fetus is seen sometimes yawning because it has known sleep and immortality in it at this stage.
Since your baby is growing rapidly, it is clear that you can expect changes in your body during the 18 weeks pregnant, including some noticeable changes in your waistline as it may expand slightly.
You should also be able to feel the uterus just below your stomach as it starts to come out a little out of your pelvis. It is expected that you have gained about 6 kilograms, but this may differ from one mother to another. However, you should not lose any weight at this stage of pregnancy.
You can also notice some stretch marks around your abdomen as well as other areas of your body.
18 weeks pregnant Belly Size
Although every pregnant mother reading this article will experience different symptoms related to pregnancy, like all of them, your tummy will appear slightly in any way. It will be evident that your belly is expanding a lot as your baby grows rapidly in the womb.
A doctor should be consulted in case of any weakness or sudden weight gain. Besides, the shape of your pelvis should look different, and your belly should continue to grow.
18 Weeks Pregnant symptoms
Some of the symptoms that afflicted a pregnant woman persist since the beginning of her pregnancy, as well as some new symptoms that coincide with the growth of her fetus and the progress of her pregnancy, such as:
- Sleep disturbances and insomnia increase annoyingly this week as a result of the start of increasing the size of the abdomen on the one hand and changes in blood circulation on the other hand.
- Increased urge to urinate, which is a constant symptom with a pregnant woman from the beginning, as a result of the pressure of the uterus on the mother’s bladder when it expands to expand to suit the growth of the fetus at this stage.
- Feeling of heaviness in the lower abdomen and back, which may be accompanied by some pain, as a result of some changes in the uterus and pelvis area to suit the growth of the fetus and the developments of pregnancy.
- A pregnant woman may experience some blood pressure disturbances that lead to swelling of the limbs and face, which may also cause bleeding from the nose.
- Beginning to feel a gentle movement and kicks of the baby in its mother’s womb.
- Fatigue and a feeling of dizziness may be due to a blood sugar disorder or a blood pressure disorder, and therefore, the movement must be cautious and slow.
- Vaginal discharge is one of the most prominent symptoms observed since the beginning of pregnancy due to the changes that occur in the uterus.
- Breast pain continues, and the changes that occur to them to prepare for breastfeeding the little one upon arrival.
- Excessive appetite and eating large amounts of food.
- Increased heart rate to pump more blood into the fetus and supply it with the necessary food and important materials.
18 Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound
Upon reaching your 18th week of pregnancy, your doctor may recommend a detailed ultrasound to evaluate your fetus’s growth and development. For some women, this may be the first look of their unborn baby. For others may have already had an ultrasound scan before this. In the following article, we will discuss all you need to know about ultrasound for 18 weeks pregnant.
Why should you have an ultrasound scan in the 18th week of pregnancy?
An ultrasound scan at 18-20 weeks of pregnancy is part of a routine examination. Your doctor may recommend an ultrasound scan for the following reasons:
- To determine the age of the fetus.
- To check the number of embryos (one or more than one)
- To make estimates about the history of the situation.
- To measure the amount of fluid surrounding the fetus.
- To check the cervix and birth canal.
- To find out the position of the placenta.
What can you see on an 18th-week ultrasound?
You can ask the radiologist in advance if you would like to have the scan images displayed on the screen. Although most hospitals or health centers provide this facility, it is always good to provide information in advance.
- If this is the first-time ultrasound, your doctor will tell you the number of fetuses you are carrying as well as the expected delivery date.
- You will also hear the baby’s heartbeat for the first time.
- The radiologist may also show you the face, arms, and legs of your fetus. However, you may find it difficult to determine the organs of your fetus, but this is perfectly fine because the scan is a bit difficult to understand. You can ask a radiologist to help you better understand the scan.
- The infant’s bones at the 18th week of pregnancy with ultrasound will appear white on the screen, the amniotic fluid will appear in black, and the soft tissues will appear in gray.
After the radiologist displays glimpses of the scan, he turns the screen toward himself and makes further assessments. They will provide you with an electronic copy or a DVD for examination after the process is completed.
Are there any risks or side effects of an 18th-week ultrasound scan?
There are no effects after the ultrasound scan, and you can easily continue your daily activities. At the same time, there is no available scientific evidence to prove any ill effects of an ultrasound scan for an expectant mother and her unborn child.
There is no harmful radiation used to obtain the images instead, and extremely high-frequency sound waves are also used for this. In some cases where the embryo is further from the transducer, the process becomes a bit difficult and may take a little longer.
You may be called after a few days for the scan. In the case of twins and multiple pregnancies, your doctor may also have difficulties determining the configurations of the fetus and may ask you to come back again after a few days.
What defects can be seen on an eighteenth-week ultrasound?
Some of these disadvantages may include the following:
- Short limbs or no limbs
- Cleft lip
- Abdominal wall defects (protruding bowel)
- Abdominal wall defects (protruding liver)
- Abnormalities related to the absence of the upper part of the head
- Severe kidney problem
- Spinal cord problems
- Excessive brain fluid
- Chromosomal abnormalities
- Severe heart defects
- Any types of holes in the muscles that separate the abdomen and chest.
These medical conditions are not very common, and they rarely occur in children. However, it is better to have an ultrasound scan and to rule out the possibilities of all these medical conditions.
Pregnancy Checklist at 18 Weeks Pregnant
During this time, you should be familiar with what to do for the health of your body during pregnancy and the health of your baby, who needs nutritional care and a safe environment. It is better to take care of yourself and not be anxious. But if you feel that Something worries you, you should contact your doctor with confidence and trust your instincts.
What to do
- Stay hydrated at all costs, as this will help relieve cramps and aches.
- Ensure you stay safe and maintain a positive attitude, as this will help you overcome pregnancy depression.
- Light exercise helps relieve aches and pains.
- Keep your surroundings bright and cheerful as this helps combat your mood swings.
- Do yoga and some relaxing massages.
- Eat meals at appropriate times in appropriate quantities to maintain a healthy blood sugar level.
- Ask for help when necessary or when you are feeling anxious.
What not to do
- Alcohol intake can reduce the rate of growth of brain and spine cells.
- Leave yourself feeling hungry, so your baby will go hungry, too.
- Waiving personal hygiene because you are susceptible to infection.
- Exposure to areas with questionable health conditions
- You must ensure that you remain stress-free to the extent possible, especially not to over-exercise.
- Take medications without consulting a doctor.
What should you buy
By this time, you should already have stocked up on the basics that you will need, not only for 18 weeks pregnant but also for the coming weeks. If you haven’t already, here are some ideas.
Comfortable shoes should be your priority now because your swollen feet need plenty of rest, and some shoe inserts may help bring you back from your center of gravity. You should wear comfortable clothes for pregnant women, preferably made of cotton. Buy a large tote bag as you will need to carry a few things for yourself. Buy some moisturizers, as your skin may dry out.
Nutrition at 18 Weeks Pregnant
“Choose healthy foods only.”
It is important not to be confused – the fact that you are pregnant is not a reason to eat for two. The most important thing – eating right so that you and your fetus are healthy. Here is a reminder of the foods that are important to include in daily meals:
- Calcium-rich food – low-fat milk or yogurt, tahini, or green leaves. Try to incorporate 3 servings of calcium-rich food a day into your nutrition…
- 3 cups of vegetables per day – preferring vegetables that contain folic acids such as broccoli, spinach, or cabbage.
- Two cups of fruit – apples, pears, or berries.
- Whole grains – for example, porridge made of whole oatmeal, whole rice, or whole wheat bread and the like.
- 200 grams of protein can come from almonds, lettuce, chicken breast, or low-fat meat.
Exercises At 18 Weeks Pregnant
At 18 weeks pregnant, Doing exercises, especially pelvic exercises, but with the advice of a specialist.