Week 17
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You

You could have more vaginal discharge, so sanitary pads or panty liners could come in handy. If the discharge changes colour or smells bad, see your midwife or doctor.

You might have lots of energy. People are probably starting to notice that you’re pregnant. It could be time to shop for pregnancy bras and maternity clothes or loose clothes.

Healthy weight gain

It’s not true that you need to ‘eat for two’ during pregnancy. The quality of food, not the quantity, is more important.

It’s recommended that women of a healthy weight gain 11-16 kg throughout pregnancy. But if you’re pregnant and carrying extra weight, it’s recommended that you gain less – 0-11 kg, depending on your starting weight. This will still allow your baby to grow normally, but limit extra weight gain for you.

Because women gain weight at different rates and times, it’s important to talk with your midwife or doctor about the best amount of weight gain for you during pregnancy. Your health professional might check your weight at pregnancy visits.

Your baby

Baby is getting bigger all the time, and might now weigh more than the placenta:

  • Baby is about 13 cm from head to bottom, and about 150 gm.
  • Baby’s external sex organs are completely formed.
  • The kidneys are working, and baby passes urine every 50 minutes or so. Baby will also swallow some urine (which is sterile) in the amniotic fluid.
  • Loud noises might make baby startle.
  • Baby’s taste buds are working, and baby can tell the difference between sweet and bitter.

The 18-20 week scan is also a screening procedure that checks your baby's development and body parts, as well as the position of the placenta. It's a good idea to think about how you’d feel and what you'd do if you're told that your baby has a high risk of complications or an abnormality.

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