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17 weeks pregnant: What to expect

Your baby at 17 weeks pregnant

Your baby is the size of a pear (length: 5.12-6.8”; weight: 140grams).

Growth spurt. This week, your little one is really starting to put on weight. The fat, also called adipose tissue, helps keep your baby warm and is important for metabolism since it's a great source of energy. Your baby might measure up to 6.8 inches and weighs nearly five ounces.

Good reactions. Your little one has been working on two basic reflexes for a few weeks: sucking and swallowing. By the time baby is born, he or she will have nearly all the same reflexes that you do.

Girl or boy? If you're going to have a girl, a special set of tissues is developing into the uterus and vagina. If a boy is in your future, these same tissues have started down a different path: the penis has formed and the prostate is beginning to take shape. The newly formed testosterone-secreting cells are key in these developments.

Your pregnancy at 17 weeks

Wardrobe S.O.S. Gone are the shapeless shifts and clunky footwear: mums-to-be can stock up on fashionable, high-quality maternity clothes. Wearing them may be your first public announcement that you're pregnant, so enjoy the attention!

Getting your vitamins! Vitamin D is an important vitamin for growth so really important for pregnant women. In the UK it is hard to make enough vitamin D as it is synthesized in your skin from sunshine! Ask your midwife or GP about whether you need to be taking an extra supplement

A pain in the... Hemorrhoids are essentially varicose veins in the rectum that have become over-dilated due to increased blood volume and flow in the pelvic area. If you're prone to varicose veins or if you had hemorrhoids during a previous pregnancy, you're likely to get them again. The best prevention strategy? A high-fiber diet, plenty of water and regular exercise.

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