17 Weeks Pregnant | Pregnancy Week By Week
17 WEEKS PREGNANT
At 17 weeks pregnant, you’ve got a little baby bump, you’re feeling pretty good, and you may start feeling your baby move! You might wonder if what you’re feeling is gas or if it’s really your baby letting you know he’s in there. Rest assured, at this point, it’s more than likely your little one doing some acrobatics. Aww!
Right now, in the 17th week of pregnancy, your baby is the size of a large onion! He weighs about 5.9 ounces and is measuring around 5.1 inches long! He’s still so small, which is why you may have trouble deciding if those sensations you’re feeling are him kicking. Don’t worry! As he grows bigger and gains more strength, those kicks will be unmistakable!
PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS WEEK 17
Thankfully, the pregnancy symptoms at 17 weeks are mild compared to the symptoms in the earlier weeks. For most women, morning sickness has gone away by week 17 and has been replaced with a boost in energy. Get as much done as you can over the next couple months because once you reach the third trimester, fatigue will set in again, and you’ll probably be too uncomfortable to want to do much of anything.
So, here are the symptoms you may experience at 17 weeks pregnant:
- Strange dreams. Whether they’re caused by the shift in hormones or by your growing anxiousness and anticipation of your baby’s arrival, many pregnant women have strange dreams such as giving birth to a full-grown adult. Yikes!
- Stretch marks. Yep, hate to say it, but you may see your first stretch mark pop up soon! Due to your uterus getting larger, your skin must stretch to accommodate it, which can cause those dreaded stretch marks. If you happen to be one of those women who goes through pregnancy without ever getting a single stretch mark, well, just know you’re being given the stink eye by all the stretch mark riddled women in the world.
- Increased bodily fluids. You may notice an increase in vaginal discharge. You might sweat more. Your nose may run. You may have bodily fluids coming out of areas you didn’t think could produce fluids. Yuck, right? These are all the pretty parts of pregnancy that no one ever talks about.
- Itchiness. As your boobs and your belly continue to grow, they may also become itchy. Try not to scratch, as hard as that may be. Keep your skin moisturized with lotion to cut down on the itchiness.
- Faster weight gain. So far, you’ve been gaining weight slowly and steadily, but you should gain anywhere between 1 and 2 pounds a week in the second trimester. If you start gaining too fast, talk with your doctor to make sure there’s not something concerning going on.
- Backaches. Backaches in pregnancy are par for the course. They’re usually caused by the added weight you’re carrying around on the front as your uterus gets larger. It helps to prop a pillow or a cushion behind your back when you’re sitting.
17 WEEK BABY BUMP
At 17 weeks, your baby bump might really be starting to pop. You may even have strangers coming up to you in public wanting to put their hands on your belly. Don’t be afraid to tell them to back off! You should be gaining 1 to 2 pounds per week at this stage of your pregnancy. If you’re pregnant with twins, your goal weight gain should be the same as singleton pregnancies. You don’t want to gain too much weight too soon.
Be sure to document each week of your pregnancy by taking pictures displaying your growing belly! It’s neat to see how much changes from week to week. These pictures will be great to look back on later or to compare to future pregnancies!
17 WEEKS PREGNANT ULTRASOUND
If you were to have an ultrasound at 17 weeks pregnant, you’d see your very tiny baby hopping around in your uterus, exercising his little limbs and helping them to grow stronger. By now, the cartilage throughout your baby’s body is turning to bone and the baby is gaining some fat. He’s continuing to practice sucking and swallowing. You may even catch of glimpse of him sucking his thumb during one of your ultrasounds. How sweet!
This week fingerprints will begin to develop on the pads of your baby’s fingers and toes. His heartbeat is now regulated by his brain and beating at a regular rhythm – around 140 to 150 beats per minute (though a little slower or faster is not cause for concern!)
While it’s too soon for your baby to be able to open his eyes (his eyelids are still fused shut), he can move his eyes around. Don’t forget that he can hear you talking as well. Find some time throughout the day to sit and talk to him or play some music for him to listen to. As he gets bigger and his kicks gain more strength, you’ll be able to feel him reacting to the sounds he’s hearing.
WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING AT 17 WEEKS PREGNANT?
As your pregnancy progresses, you may begin to have doubts and fears about bringing your new little bundle of joy into the world. Every pregnant woman does, even the women who’ve done this a time or two before. Try not to let those worries stress you out. Take this time while he’s snuggled safe inside of you to prepare for his arrival into the world.
Here are a couple things you should be doing at 17 weeks pregnant:
- Rest. Even though you may feel fine – you have energy, you don’t tire easily – your body is working hard to keep both you and your baby going and growing, so rest as much as possible. This is especially important the further you get into your pregnancy when being on your feet too much can cause swelling in your legs and feet. Prop those tootsies up and binge watch your favorite show on Netflix occasionally.
- Start thinking about if you’ll breastfeed, bottle feed, or both. Now’s a good time to start thinking about whether you’ll breastfeed. If you are planning to breastfeed, will you exclusively breastfeed, or will you pump and bottle feed with breast milk? Or maybe you’ll want to skip breastfeeding for whatever reason and feed your baby formula. Whatever you decide, don’t make the decision hastily. Do some research so you’ll feel comfortable with the decision you make.
- Sam C's Editorial Team