Check out what happened with your little one last week.
Mouth in motion. If your little one could understand your jokes, you'd see a smile this week (or a frown if you're not the world's most entertaining comedian). Your fetus's mouth can even open and close and is starting to make swallowing and sucking motions (watch out, thumb). Those facial muscles are really getting a workout!
Set for speech. The esophagus, windpipe, larynx, and vocal cords are all in place. Of course, the vocal cords can't make any sounds yet, since your little one is floating in fluid. But they're already being prepped for that first loud wail after birth.
Face formation. With each passing week, your fetus is looking more like the little person you'll meet the day you give birth. By now, the eyes have moved to their proper place at the top of the face, and the ears have moved from the neck to the sides of the head. The jaws have been complete for a while, and the palate is now "zipping up," closing from front to back.
Measuring up. Your little one weighs about 2 ounces and measures 3.2 to 4.3 inches long.
The ever-expanding uterus. Losing your waistline? That's because your uterus is beginning to rise above your pubic bone. You might not be able to feel it on your own, especially if this is your first pregnancy. But your health care provider knows what to look for. He or she will note the size of your uterus by measuring from your pubic bone to the top of your uterus, called the fundus, at each prenatal visit. This measurement is one indication of how well your pregnancy is going. Generally, fundal height correlates to the week of pregnancy. Right now, your fundal height is approximately 14 centimeters above the upper ridge of your pubic bone. At 20 weeks, it will be about 20 centimeters.
Feeling congested? It could be allergies or a cold, or it might simply be another pregnancy symptom. Many pregnant women find that their nose constantly feels stuffed-up, making it difficult to breathe. Congestion occurs because the hormone progesterone increases circulation to the mucous membranes of the nose, causing them to swell. This condition is called pregnancy rhinitis, and unfortunately there's not much you can do to make it go away. You can try using a humidifier or dabbing a little petroleum jelly in each nostril to make your nose less dry. Just be sure to avoid antihistamine nasal sprays.
From the experts. Wondering if you're carrying twins? "Identical twins occur in about 4 out of every 1,000 births, while fraternal twins occur at different rates in different ethnic and age groups," says Margaret Comerford Freda, Ed.D., R.N. If you used fertility drugs, your chances of a multiple birth are much higher. To learn more from Dr. Freda about twins, click here.