The second trimester is often referred to as the Golden Age of pregnancy. For most women, the nausea and extreme fatigue of the first trimester have ended and the third trimester aches and pains have not yet begun. The risk of miscarriage also declines significantly at this point in your pregnancy.
Sometime between weeks 16 and 20 of the second trimester is also when you get to experience those exciting first feelings of your baby. The second trimester is also the time when many women experience increased energy levels.
Although you'll likely lose a few of the more bothersome symptoms of the first trimester such as nausea and extreme fatigue, the second trimester has some physical feelings all its own. While every pregnancy is unique, here are some of the changes you may see during weeks 15 through 27 of your pregnancy:
While your body undergoes many changes during your second trimester, there are some things that warrant a call to your doctor:
It is during your second trimester that your doctor may recommend screening tests for gestational diabetes and anemia. Your doctor will explain each of the screening tests and advise you of the precautions you must take if any of the test results are positive.
Gestational diabetes is caused by the hormonal and metabolic changes of pregnancy. It occurs in 2 to 10% of pregnant women, often with no warning signs. Generally, all pregnant women are screened for this condition because the screening test is relatively simple and the disease can be difficult to diagnose without the test.
Your doctor may also screen you for anemia at the same time as you are screened for gestational diabetes. Although you may have started your pregnancy with no signs of anemia, pregnancy can cause some women to develop iron deficiency.
If you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes, your doctor will closely monitor you during pregnancy to ensure that you and your baby have no health problems. If you are found to be anemic, your doctor will advise you on the steps you should take to ensure that you and your baby are getting adequate supplies of iron.
During the second trimester, your baby is growing at an incredible rate. By the end of the 27th week, your baby will be nearly 12 inches long and may weigh 1 1/2 pounds.
During the fourth month of your pregnancy, here are some of the developments your baby is undergoing:
Here's what your baby is doing during the fifth month you are pregnant:
At the end of the sixth month, your baby is 12 inches long and weighs between 1 1/2 and 2 pounds. Other developments include: