Check out what happened with your baby's development last week.
In the round. "My body fills out a little every day." Your baby measures 12 to 13 inches and weighs about 1.5 pounds. Her skin is still thin, wrinkled, and pale, but she gets a bit plumper every day, thanks to the fat and muscle she's continually adding. Right now tiny blood vessels called capillaries are starting to develop below your little one's skin, and these will give it a pink hue. And she's still swallowing amniotic fluid. Too bad it doesn't come in different flavors!
Brain gain. The brain's cortex is developing into layers. Most of the action is still controlled by other brain areas that developed much earlier. The human cerebral cortex is the most elaborate brain structure in all the animal kingdom, giving us the ability to think, plan, and feel in complex ways.
Soccer mom. Does it seem as if your organs are starting to get squished? No wonder—your uterus is now about the size of a soccer ball. It measures from your pubic bone upward to a point that's halfway between your belly button and your sternum (the bone where your ribs come together), about 25 centimeters in diameter.
Diabetes check. It's time for your glucose screening test, a procedure that's performed between 24 and 28 weeks. This test looks for signs of gestational diabetes, a high-blood-sugar condition that usually goes away after birth. It affects 2 to 5 percent of pregnant women. If earlier tests detected sugar in your urine, or if you have a history of this problem, you may have been checked for gestational diabetes already. The glucose screen is a simple test. First, you drink a sugary solution. A short time later, your provider or a lab technician draws your blood and tests its sugar level. If your blood sugar is too high, a more lengthy blood glucose test is performed to determine whether you have gestational diabetes. Treatment involves a special diet and, in a few cases, medication.
You go, girl. The need to urinate constantly may be one of pregnancy's most annoying challenges. As soon as you come back from the bathroom and get settled, you have to go again! As inconvenient as it may be sometimes, be sure that you empty your bladder as soon as you feel the need. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common during pregnancy, and they may be caused or aggravated by not urinating promptly or completely.
Telling symptoms. One sign of a UTI is a need to urinate frequently. Another is a feeling of urgency—like you really need to go—but nothing happens. You may feel burning or pain when you urinate, or your urine may have an unpleasant odor. If you have these symptoms, call your doctor right away. UTIs are easily cured but can cause very serious complications if left untreated during pregnancy.
From the experts. Is your snoring keeping your partner awake at night? "It's a common complaint during pregnancy," says Elaine Zwelling, R.N., Ph.D. "The increased estrogen in your body causes congestion, which in turn can cause snoring." Learn how to sleep more quietly with these tips from Dr. Zwelling.