The second trimester – before anything, take a look at Clara’s life!
Clara was overjoyed! She was in her second trimester of pregnancy (14th week) and the doctor had confirmed it to be a girl. She and Marc had always wanted a girl to grace their family first. Finally, she could go shopping for her maternity clothes and plan out the nursery. However, there was additional news too. Though she was regular with her exercise routine, Omega 3 content in her body was below normal range – she had to increase her consumption.
So, are you nervous, as you too approach your second trimester? Well, there’s nothing to worry!
During the usual 42 week gestation period – this second trimester is known as ‘honeymoon period’, courtesy the return of energy. From fluttering movements in your belly to gaining some weight – this period is most energetic for women embracing motherhood.
Dear would-be-mothers – it is time that you keep a know-how of all the symptoms and ‘what to do/what not to do’ list handy. Scroll down – you will get all your answers in a jiffy!
Second trimester is here – The fetus is developing!
The period between (week 13 – week 27) is stated to be the second trimester of pregnancy. During this period, the fetus starts moving – from kicking to swallowing to sucking and finally sleeping. Women during this period experience ‘quickening’ – with the fetus growing 8 to 12 inches long.
That’s not all! The baby’s nervous system, reproductive organs and limbs are developed. What’s more? You can hear its heartbeat FOR THE FIRST TIME!
As your uterus grows upward, you can see abdominal growth and certain changes in your skin tone. Also, stretch marks develop in your belly with increased sensitivity to sun.
Second trimester symptoms that you must know:
Your sex drive will be back! Gone are the days of nausea and fatigue! In your second trimester of pregnancy, you suddenly feel energetic. However, there are certain other symptoms that you cannot miss –
- Bleeding gums, nostrils
- Enlargement of breasts
- Milky white discharge from vagina
- Constipation followed by heartburn
- Dry and itchy skin. At times, patches can also develop.
- Infections in urinary tract
- Increased urination
Now, it is important that you know these pregnancy symptoms so that you keep medicine and hot water bag near you.
For that increased puffiness in your eyes – put the cold green tea bag on your eyes and leave it for a while. (Green tea is good for your pregnancy.)
Important tests for second trimester
Apart from ultrasound to assess development of the fetus, some other important tests are:
- Checking glucose levels in blood for gestational diabetes.
- Amniocentesis for checking – disabilities of chromosome, defects in neural tube, and Down’s syndrome.
The second trimester diet chart you must follow
When you are in your second trimester of pregnancy, your pregnancy diet needs to have folic acid and vitamin supplements. Apart from that, strawberries, fish, sesame seeds, carrot juice, and spinach should make it to your list.
As per latest data available – 2200 calories is adequate for a pregnant woman in second trimester. Vitamin D and calcium supplements are musts!
The correct pregnancy diet plan that you must follow during this period is –
- Wholegrain carbs at every meal – cereals/pasta/bread/potatoes/rice. Additional minerals are most welcome.
- To meet iron and protein needs – lean meat, eggs, tofu, lentils, fish are a must!
- For increasing folic acid in your body – cabbage, kale, and broccoli are necessary. 5 portions of fruits and vegetables are compulsory.
- You must consume oily fish only once a week to maintain Omega 3 fatty acid levels. (Doctors have strictly advised Clara for this.)
- The other options include – milk, soya, walnuts or any dry fruit, fibres, sweet potatoes, avocados, peanut butter, Greek yoghurt, sunflower and pumpkin seeds.
However, there’s a list of food products that you have to avoid at this stage of pregnancy. They are – Canned tuna, salmon, shrimp, brie, feta, blue cheese, alcohol, artificial sweeteners, etc.
If those chocolate cravings increase in the middle of the night – a bite or two won’t harm!
Must-do-exercises during second trimester
If you are a working woman – go about with your daily routine – just avoid stress. For all those stay-at-home moms, give your body some routine exercise for better delivery.
- To start off with – Prenatal yoga is the best exercise during this trimester. Practice only those asana’s which require you to lie down or sit.
- Kegel exercise is a must in this stage of pregnancy. Start off with 8-10 seconds workout and repeat it.
- Light jogging and long walks – albeit on a flat surface.
- Lighter water aerobics is a great exercise at this stage.
Do give exercises like stationary cycling, running, weight training a miss!
Emergency medical conditions
Women – be very careful! Some discomfort is part of your pregnancy routine, but if you find these medical conditions –
- Vaginal bleeding soaking more than a single pad
- Grey or pink colored clots of tissue passing through vagina
- Severe abdominal pain
Rush to the doctor!
Note: What if you suddenly develop a complication?
Termed as ‘golden period’ of pregnancy, you can have an abortion if certain complications arise. For that, doctors follow, ‘dilation’ and ‘evacuation’ process which is carried over 2 to 3 days.
Miscarriage in this trimester
Though the chances of such a scenario are minimum, however, issues as – placental abruption, heart defects of fetus, infections in pelvic cavity are the most common second trimester symptoms that could lead to miscarriage.
When all’s done – here’s some planning for your new baby!
Would be mummies – when your diet chart, exercise routine and medical emergencies are managed – how about some preps for your little baby? (Clara has already decided on her girl’s nursery theme – night sky graced by stars and fairies! How about you?)
- Since doctors would permit flying till 28 weeks, you can go for a baby-moon.
- If possible, take a walk down the hospital where you will have your delivery.
- Have a chat with your doctor about intake of medicines during labour pain, or period before that.
- Watch out some delivery and parenting videos on YouTube.
So, lady – feeling ‘womanly’? Well, some curves – orgasm glow – growing life! How can you not feel spectacular? Enjoy this second trimester of pregnancy; your baby will soon start kicking harder!