15 Weeks Pregnant: Body Changes, What to Eat & More

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15 weeks is around the second trimester of the whole gestation period.

Body changes in the expectant mother’s body.

  • Weight gain-this is completely normal as the baby is going a lot more than the first trimester. Measure your weight regularly and it should be about 0.5 kg a week on average.
  • Enlargement of the rib cage around 2 to 3 inches to accommodate the widening of the lungs to carry more oxygen to the baby since the capacity increases.
  • Body pains and aches- unless they are unbearable this is completely normal. The uncomfortable pain may be a result of the growing belly that put excess pressure on the muscles and skeleton. All this to accommodate the growing fetus accompanied by the weakening of abdominal walls and increasing strain of muscles. In addition to that, hormonal levels are heightened (especially relaxin hormone) causing stretching of joints and ligaments in the body and this change correlates with back pain.
  • Nipples become darker and bumpier; the hormones cause the skin cell to produce more pigment. there also is the secretion of oily substance so that the nipples can become oily and soft during breastfeeding the secretion of this oil substance is due to the gland called Montgomery tubercles that are only visible during pregnancy. they are found around the nipples on the areola, they re-raised white bumps around the areola(the dark area surrounding the nipple, just like goosebumps).
  • Numbing, tingling Hands and feet- you’ve ever slept on your arm for a long time or sit on your leg and had that tingling feeling? That is the body’s way of telling you a particular area is not getting enough blood or you are compressing a nerve. However, this is just temporary during the second trimester and very common in the last trimester caused by carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Sexual arousal(increased libido)- estrogen whose level rises during the second-trimester causes an increase of blood flow in the vulva and vagina lubrication hence heightened arousal and pleasure. The genital blood flow makes the clitoris hypersensitive. there is no harm in enjoying sex in this period is advised until the very late stages of your pregnancy.
  • Sensitive teeth and gums-it may be accompanied by bleeding gums especially during brushing teeth, it’s the pregnancy hormones making your gums swell hence likely to bleed. these same hormones make your sinuses to clog. If the symptoms of sinusitis are brutal seek medical help to get relieved.
  • Nose bleed; same thing hormonal changes cause a nose bleeds and if you are not losing a lot of blood do not be terrified as this is completely normal.
The good news is by this time nausea and vomiting symptoms are fading, unlike the first trimester, so the expectant mother is likely to get her appetite back. this is not a privilege for all women some women experience hyperemesis gravidarum which is an intense morning sickness accompanied by extreme vomiting and may require hospitalization, this may lead to complications like premature detachment of the placenta from the uterus(womb), which causes deprivation of the nutrients and oxygen to the baby. So go see the doctor!

Changes of the baby during 15 weeks of pregnancy’

From the size of kiwi fruit in week fourteen to the size of an orange or apple.fascinating right?  It is about 4.5 inches a nd weighs about 144 grams. 
  • The outer part of the baby ears can be recognizable through the inner year continues to develop, hearing though not yet it's happening and you can start singing or read to that baby.
  • The skin is still translucent and vessels and skeleton can be seen, some bones like collar bone have already the development process through the bones from the hands and feet harden and become stronger this week. 
  • Baby hair might appear on the scalp and eyebrows.
  • By 15  weeks the bay can make whole-body movements, their arms legs, stretch and breathing motions, they can go as far as sucking thumbs. When very still, focused and attentive some women can feel their baby moves as early as 15 weeks, they aren’t as strong as the “it kicked” during the 20- 22 weeks. these are first fetal movements and are known as “fluttering” and they are very subtle that some mothers don’t feel them at all.

Food a pregnant mother is advised to eat at 15 weeks

A pregnant mother should consume a balanced diet to avoid pregnancy difficulties like high blood pressure, premature birth, preeclampsia (rise of blood pressure, swelling of face, hands, and feet. Although a balanced diet should be  some nutrients are very essential including

  • Protein- this is essential for the growth of the abyss brain and other tissues to grow, it also helps the growth of the mother's uterus and breasts. for every 1kg of a mother, she should aim to eat 1.52g of protein every day. So if the expectant mother is 65 kg she should eat 98.8g of protein daily. The protein foods include lean meat(low-fat content), nuts, eggs (not undercooked to avoid the risk of salmonella), fish,  and beans.
  • Iron; supplies oxygen to the baby and voids anemia and complications such as premature birth and pots Partum depression (feeling down after giving birth) is a mental health condition. The foods containing iron are meat (lean), green vegetables, groundnuts, cashew nuts, bread, cereal foods. Iron from animal products is absorbed way faster than that from plants. For those who are vegans  foods rich in vitamin c like oranges are highly advisable
  • Fluids- pregnant women need to stay hydrated at all times (8-12glasses a day). Water is essential for the formation of amniotic fluid, carries nutrients and wastes to and fro respectively, produces extra blood, lack of water can cause premature labor, neural tube defects reduced milk production, and low amniotic fluid. Stay hydrated queens!
  • Calcium &folic acid- calcium helps to strengthen a baby's bones and teeth and improves its circulatory system. Folic acid prevents neural tube defects (birth defects of brain, spine, or spinal cord including spina bifida which is the failure of the baby’s spinal cord to develop properly and anencephaly which is a baby born with brain or incomplete skull and normally becomes stillborn or dies few hours after being born), reduces risks of premature labour.No expectant mother wants any of that to happen to her baby. So take these calcium foods which include dairy, eggs, sardines, and salmon (with bones), fruit juices and greens, and foods containing folic acid include oranges, grains, green vegetables, cereals, and legumes.  The folic acid increment is available as one may not get enough from foods.
  • Vitamin D and fatty acids – like calcium vitamin d  in building the baby’s bones and teeth.it is not present in many foods but can be obtained from the morning sun even though the body generates it's own vitamin D. Cereal and milk, egg yolk, beef liver, cheese 9 just to mention a few the supplements can be obtained especially fr those who live in polar regions. Fatty acids support the heart, brain, and eyes, prevent premature labor, increase birth weight, and reduces the risk of the mother falling into depression. Vegetable oils, fruits, nuts animal fats, are some of the sources of fatty acids.
 N.B Alcohol in the first trimester can cause the baby to have abnormal facial features however alcohol deprives growth and cause harm to the central nervous system, refrain from it at all costs!

Do not smoke! It causes baby defects like the sudden death of infant syndrome or cleft lip or cleft palate( this is an opening on the baby's lip or in the roof of her mouth. Of course, it can be treated but if you can avoid it you should.
  • Working out is good as it helps reduces aches, bloating and constipation helps a woman to sleep better. It also helps one to have a normal delivery, without unnecessary complications. Avoid being idle unless strictly advised by the doctor to have a bed rest. Almost there queens, a new life is about to join yours!.

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