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20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

The passage of time while waiting for the baby to arrive goes by quite quickly, since it is already the 20th week of pregnancy on the calendar. This period cannot be called small, but while a woman has no premonition that her baby is about to appear, but she feels it inside her 100% and it is incredible.

So that you can more accurately understand your condition and the processes that take place inside you, we have tried to collect about it the most important information on the subject.

The 20th week of pregnancy: how the baby is developing

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

The fetus in the 20th week of pregnancy is almost unchanged externally, except for a few moments:

  • The proportions of the body are more correct – the fingers, hands and feet have become almost perfect, and the ratio of the limbs, head and torso is almost like that of a newborn baby, only slightly smaller;
  • Gradually, the skin loses transparency due to the fact that new layers of dermis are formed, while there is still some down on the body, which will disappear before birth or in the first days after birth;
  • The movements become clearer and more coordinated, and they are aimed at exploring the surroundings, which at the moment are confined to the mother’s womb.

Gradually, periods of wakefulness become more frequent. The baby begins to live at his mother’s rhythm – this is worth considering. You may notice that the baby inside you begins to react to various stimuli (sound, emotion, eaten sweets, etc.).

Regarding the internal development, everything also runs its course. Virtually all of the systems are formed and are working normally, but their improvement and complication is still going on. All the basic processes in the baby’s body – nutrition, breathing, etc. – are dependent on the mother’s body.

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

The baby’s heart already has four chambers formed. However, the small circle of circulation is not yet functioning, and it will start working in the first hours after birth in full. The system of veins and capillaries is still showing through the thin skin, but the walls are becoming thicker and more elastic.

The respiratory system continues to form, but will not be able to begin its work until after birth. While the upper part of the body (head and torso) is better supplied with oxygen, which is due to a higher concentration of vital organs at the top.

It is worth noting that you already have a baby in your belly at 20 weeks of pregnancy who is able to see and hear. However, your eyes remain closed most of the time. Regarding hearing, all organs are formed and the baby is able to respond to sound vibrations inside and outside the mother’s body.

Fetal size in the 20th week of pregnancy

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

The fetus in the 20th week of pregnancy should normally reach 25 centimeters, but there may be larger sizes – 27-28 centimeters. Regarding fetal weight, it is about 500 grams.

Development of the baby may seem to the mother rather protracted, but it is not so – everything goes its way. It is worth noting that the proportions of the fetus have almost evened out, that is, the length of the limbs in relation to the head and torso aligned.

The 20th week of pregnancy: feelings

The most important sensation that this term brings is the pushing and stroking of the fetus in the womb. These sensations are expected by every mommy from the moment she found out about her condition. For women who are carrying their firstborn, these sensations manifest themselves at this very term, which can both please and surprise them.

The uterus at 20 weeks of pregnancy continues to increase in size. Its position at this point is about 2-3 centimeters below the navel. Because of the growth of the female organ, you may feel some pressure inside – this may cause discomfort. This can provoke frequent urge to pee, heaviness in the abdomen and some other digestive problems.

A woman can still experience digestive problems such as heartburn, constipation, heaviness after meals. However, if you follow a certain diet (you will need to exclude certain foods and dishes), these problems will leave you quite quickly.

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

Sleepiness and fatigue may also occur. However, the general state of depression, emotional tension and sensitivity recede little by little. A pregnant woman cannot help but rejoice at the fact that she is no longer troubled by toxicosis (as a rule, this symptom is gone) and there is no longer an acute desire to eat something inedible.

There will be a new sign – swelling. Usually this symptom is felt very strongly in hot seasons and at considerable motor exertion. You may want to sit or lie down more during this period, so you should use the slightest opportunity to rest additionally.

Lower back pain may still be bothersome – this is quite normal if there is no persistence and the pain is tolerable. The pain is due to a displacement of the pelvic bones, which has led to a change in the center of gravity. As a rule, the pain is not characterized by constancy, it occurs periodically and after significant physical exertion.

Instead of drowsiness and emotionality, you may notice that you began to forget some little things. Many pregnant women complain about forgetfulness at this term – it can be disturbing and interfere with normal work. You can escape (in some sense) from this if you keep a pregnancy diary and daily notes with plans for the near future.

Ultrasound in 20 weeks of pregnancy

It is worth noting that an ultrasound scan at 20 weeks of pregnancy is scheduled, and by the count, is usually the second one. If indicated, the ultrasound may have been performed earlier by doctor’s appointment.

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

Regarding the purpose for which an ultrasound in the 20th week of pregnancy is performed, it is done to determine the stage and course of fetal development.

During an ultrasound in 20 weeks of pregnancy, the doctor evaluates the condition of the placenta and umbilical cord, since the correctness of fetal development depends on these indicators. Also the overall development of the fetus is to be evaluated, and for this purpose some body measurements are taken. Another important thing to evaluate is the uterine-placental and umbilical blood flow.

What happens to the mother’s body in the 20th week of pregnancy?

The most prominent sign of change is the abdomen at 20 weeks of gestation. As a rule, a rounded belly at this term is no longer concealed, but there are exceptions. Belly size was and remains a purely individual trait, because the body and body constitution is different for everyone.

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

Women who carefully monitor their weight, probably noted a significant increase. The minimum weight gain is about 3 kilograms by this term from the standard figure (before pregnancy). The average weekly weight gain should be 300 grams, otherwise there are serious problems and threats. If weight gain is more intense, there are no significant problems, but expectant mothers should adjust their diets. Most often, more intense weight gain in women indicates a multiple pregnancy or her inability to control her appetite.

More and more spots and stretch marks appear on a pregnant woman’s body. However, increased pigmentation is not a threat to everyone, but only to those women who are predisposed to this phenomenon. As for stretch marks, their greater concentration on the chest and abdomen, and stripes of stretch marks may also appear on the hips. In the center of the abdomen (from the navel to the pubis) there is a dark line.

The 20th week of pregnancy: what to look out for

In the 20th week of pregnancy, there is already no significant threat to the baby and you, but you should not let your guard down. Particular attention should be paid to the movements inside you – their intensity, concentration and other things. If you find any atypical manifestations of fetal activity, you should immediately contact your doctor.

You should also be attentive to your emotional state. There is no need to worry about minor things, try to think reasonably and logically. Avoid situations where you have to fight or prove something to someone.

Some women at this stage of pregnancy may change vaginal discharge – they become larger, changing consistency, etc. This is considered quite normal, if there is no pronounced color or unpleasant odor. Abundant secretions are needed to protect the mommy’s genitourinary system from infections and bacteria.

The 20th week of pregnancy: what you need to discuss with your doctor

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

If you had an ultrasound scan at 20 weeks of pregnancy, you most likely have the results in your hands. To understand what stage of development your baby is at, whether everything is proceeding normally and more, ask for a transcript of the results. Your doctor will tell you how your pregnancy is progressing and what is happening with your baby at this stage.

Ask your doctor if your weight gain is normal. This parameter is strictly individual for each woman, because the peculiarities of the body and physiology of each organism are individual. However, you need to make sure that there is no danger for you and your baby.

Is it allowed to have sex during pregnancy (in particular at this stage) – this question should also be addressed to your doctor. A specialist will probably tell you that there are no obvious reasons to refuse sex during a normal pregnancy. However, if there are physical discomfort (eg, painful sensations in the vagina) is worth to take appropriate measures, or even refuse intimacy. But it is worth remembering that every case is different.

The 20th week of pregnancy: tips

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

You still need to be routine in most areas of your life, namely:

  • Eating on a schedule, and the diet should consist exclusively of healthy products for you and the baby. You should also avoid products that promote the formation of gas;
  • Pay sufficient attention to your hygiene. This is especially important if the pregnancy falls in the hot season – take a shower more often and freshen up the body. You may need to change your underwear more often to feel more comfortable;
  • Try to breathe air regularly. Walks should be daily to oxygenate your body, which eliminates a lot of problems.

If you have noticed that very important things “fly out” of your head, then we advise you to keep a diary, where you will record all the important and not very important moments. It is better to keep such a diary from the very beginning of pregnancy – it will help you to understand yourself and your condition. If forgetfulness is interfering with your work, first of all, warn your colleagues, because they may be the first to suffer from it. Secondly, you will be able to help a lot with the reminders on your own phone – make a habit of recording important matters in a special application. Or you can make it easier – write yourself a note, but do not forget to read it.

Do not forget about your body and appearance. You may not like the fact that your weight is growing rapidly – this can be a reason for insecurity about your own attractiveness. A significant disadvantage of your appearance you can consider pigmentation on the body and lines of stretch marks (stretch marks). However, this situation can be corrected relatively easily:

  • Properly choose clothing that you will be in your size and best fit your type of appearance. We advise to be guided by the situation – for example, at work, it is worth choosing the most comfortable clothes in discreet colors, given the rules of the dress code;
  •  The shoes are the key to your foot comfort. If you have a problem with swelling, try to wear orthopedic shoes in which you will walk comfortably and easily. After a busy day be sure to take 15-20 minutes for foot massage and cool baths;
  • Pay enough attention to your intimate hygiene. Carry special wipes for intimate hygiene, and if necessary spare panties to be able to change;
  • Use special products from stretch marks – they should buy in pharmacies. You should also try some folk remedies, which have a positive effect on the skin.

Careful attention to the organization of the place to rest and sleep. Because of the growth of the tummy, you may find it difficult to find the most comfortable position for sleeping. It is wiser to replace a low-quality mattress, buy more comfortable pillows and use only linens made of natural fabric. You should choose sleeping positions that do not involve excessive pressure on the abdomen and lower back.

20 weeks of pregnancy: questions and answers

Time in anticipation of the appearance of her baby brings the mother and all her loved ones a lot of pleasant moments. But some worries and questions may also be present – the 20th week of pregnancy is no exception.

20th week of pregnancy: everything an expectant mother needs to know

Experienced doctors will help you find answers to many of your questions, and your mother and friends will give you tips. On their own also worth looking for new information for themselves. And we’ll try to answer some questions as clearly as possible right now.

How does the abdomen at 20 weeks of pregnancy look like?

The visibility of the abdomen at 20 weeks of pregnancy is purely individual, because the composition of each mommy is different and the baby also develops in its own way. However, in most cases, a certain rounding of shapes can no longer be hidden.

What should be the movements at 20 weeks?

The movements at this term should be moderately intense. The norm is about 200 pushes and touches per day. It is worth noting that if this number increases, it is necessary to consult a doctor.

Where can I feel the movement at 20 weeks?

At this stage the baby is growing and actively changing its position, so its touch can be felt all over the uterine cavity as the fetus touches the walls with its arms and legs. These touches confirm that the baby is developing normally.

20 weeks is how many months of pregnancy?

In terms of months, the 20th week of pregnancy is 5.5 months, that is, the beginning of the 6th month. Most of the pregnancy is over, and the second trimester is still going on.

How does the baby behave at 20 weeks of pregnancy?

As a rule, the fetus is already very active at this stage – it moves its arms and legs, squeezes cams, turns over, etc. All these actions can be felt by the woman, which, of course, can’t help but rejoice.


Manjula Yulia Vladimirovna - obstetrician, 17 years of experience.
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