At 16 weeks pregnant, you may start feeling more and more “pregnant”. Your weight may be harder to maneuver around, your belly is probably getting in the way, and you may be feeling pressure and pain in places you never knew you would. All of these uncomfortable symptoms and inconveniences tend to be seriously downplayed by the newest thing to expect from your baby: feeling her movements! Feeling something like flutters or air bubbles in your tummy, you’ll start to identify the rumbles in your tummy as her moving around in there! If that isn’t a great payoff for all of the discomfort, I don’t know what is!
At almost 4½” this week, your baby is working hard to get where she needs to be to come out and meet you. With her brain and body working overtime to form the connections, develop the senses, and coordinate reflexes and movements, she is a busy girl! Even though she’s still smaller than a grapefruit and her head is proportionately larger than her body, her eyes and ears have moved into position and are in the right places. She now has real baby hair growing on her head, and no matter how definite you are as to what features she’ll have or who she’ll look like, you won’t know the color of that hair of the color of those eyes until she’s born… and both can change for moths following the birth!
Because you are now 16 weeks pregnant, your chances of carrying your baby to full term is much greater than just a couple of weeks ago. If it makes you feel any better to let go of a possible concern, your being in the 16th week of pregnancy puts your miscarriage risk at lower than 1%! You can’t beat that! This week, you may start discussing testing that will occur in the following weeks. If you research nothing else in your pregnancy, take the time to analyze and weigh the risks and benefits of certain invasive tests. Although many tests are done simply by taking a blood sample or a swab, the amniocentesis (“amnio”) is a genetic test done to check the fetus for chromosomal abnormalities or other defects and is recommended to women over the age of 35; although it is a common test, there are serious risks associated with it and it should be something researched and discussed in depth!
At 16 weeks pregnant, you have some time to go, but being educated on your pregnancy and what is going on with your body and the baby’s is just being a good parent. Your baby is developing nicely and you are probably feeling more pregnant with every passing day. Take the time this week to learn about the prenatal testing you’ll undergo through the rest of your pregnancy. Research and discuss your upcoming tests with your partner and get some feedback on any opinions, questions, or concerns. It is a good idea to do some research on your own and jot down any questions or concerns you may have prior to your next doctor’s appointment. Being armed with information can only add protection and control to your pregnancy.