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16 weeks pregnant

Katie de Klee
All you need to know at this pregnancy stage, what changes to expect, and some great tips for the week ahead.
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5 things to look forward to at 16 weeks pregnant:
1.     Your baby is about to have a growth spurt.
2.     Continued breast growth.
3.     Soreness in the lower abdomen.
4.     Backache.
5.     The chance to start feeling your baby move.
How your life will change this week:
Many women find the constant growth of their breasts during pregnancy overwhelming (although their partners don’t usually complain!) The reason your breasts keep growing is so that they will be ready for breastfeeding by the end of the second trimester. You may find that when you move around your abdomen feels sore – this is because the ligaments are still stretching to accommodate your growing womb. As your baby continues to grow, your lower back may curve more than usual, which can put strain on your muscles and make them feel achy. Warm baths, gentle massage and stretching exercises can help with this feeling.

16 weeks is the earliest moment you may feel your baby move, although for many women it only happens at 18 weeks, and for first-time Moms it may be as late as 20 weeks. Feeling your baby move for the first time is one of the most amazing moments of pregnancy. At first it might feel like nothing more than a little flutter, or a bubble, but as your baby gets stronger the sensations will become much more obvious.

Your baby’s development this week:
Your baby will soon be able to recognise the sound of your voice because of the tiny bones that are growing inside their ears. This week, your baby has grown to the size of an avocado – about 10cm from crown to rump. In the next three weeks, they will go through a growth spurt and double in weight. Your baby’s heart is already pumping about 23 litres of blood a day, and this will continue increasing as they develop.

This week’s To Do list:
  • Buy something that makes you feel good and look pretty. It will help you embrace your changing shape.
  • Try out a new recipe so that you don’t get tired of eating healthily.
  • Get a massage, even if it is just from your partner, to soothe your aching back.
If you have 5 minutes… Pregnancy top tip.
Raise your feet as often as you can – it helps to take the pressure out of the veins in your legs and can reduce swelling. It’s a good idea to have a footrest that you can use while reading or watching TV.

Curious about next week?  
Click here to find out what happens next week… And the week after.

Share your thoughts and concerns
Chat with other Moms-to-be in your area or at the same developmental stage as you in BabyGroup Forums.

BabyGroup says:
This article has been checked by Dr Nomathamsanqa Matebese, Gynaecologist. A member of the BabyGroup Medical Council.

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