What is it like?
Welcome to the second trimester of your pregnancy! Being 4 months pregnant often brings a renewed sense of wellbeing. You are basically crossing the line that separates a time of feeling sick and frustrated to the best next 3 months of your pregnancy. You’ll regain your energy, your appetite will increase and any moodiness improves significantly. The 4thmonth also marks the moment when it will be obvious that you are carrying a child.
Your baby’s growth
- Body hair
The eyelashes begin to grow. His or her body is covered with a kind of fluff called lanugo, which disappears at birth but it protects their soft skin from the amniotic liquid.
Your baby’s skin is still very thin, transparent and the veins are visible. Adipose tissue (fat cells) begins to form under the skin. This layer of fat will help your baby maintain constant temperature after birth, when the fetus goes from the warmth of the uterus to the world outside.
The pulmonary alveoli (lung cavities) are formed. In the uterus, the lungs do not function as respiratory organs. The fetus may appear to be breathing, but they are not. The lungs remain collapsed until first breath
- Bones and muscles
Your baby’s bones become stronger and they began to fix calcium. The three inner ear bones begin to harden. The muscles continue to develop.
The baby’s hearing begins to develop. Your baby may begin to hear sounds from the outside world such as your heartbeats and your voice though documented consistent response to outside noises is at 24-25weeks.
By the fourth month, you will know for certain, if you desire, your baby’s sex as the genital organs have fully developed.
What happens inside your body?
- Abdominal discomfort
The growing size of the uterus may cause different problems. Any discomfort felt last month is amplified and you may have the sensation that inside your abdomen there is a sac full of sand. You might feel there is a weight inside of you, especially when you move suddenly or run. Sometimes you may feel pain. Don’t be afraid. What is actually happening is the ligaments that sustain the uterus are stretched by its increasing size.
- Increased appettite
Morning sickness will diminish substantially and could end completely when you reach 4 months of pregnancy. Your body is now accustomed to the elevated level of hormones. You may feel like you have an insatiable appetite. Don’t be surprised — you are now eating for two now.
- Vaginal secretions
During the fourth month of pregnancy you may notice an abundant vaginal secretion that has a creamy whitish substance with a specific smell. This substance is called leucorrhea. The cause of this secretion is the increased hormones and blood flow to the vaginal area. Some pregnant women choose to change their underwear multiple times a day. As long as the secretion is white, not yellow or green and it does not have an unpleasant odor, there’s nothing to worry about. If you start to feel itchy because of it, tell your obstetrician.
How different will you look?
Being 4 months pregnant means your pregnancy is clearly visible. Some women choose to wear baggy pants and extra large shirts, while others choose more feminine attire with stretchy sculpted curves. Your breasts may be more tender and they might continue to grow. You might be bothered by swollen feet during this month too.
How can you care for both of your loved ones?
For dads or other partners, the 4th month of pregnancy can be a great opportunity to spend a little time nurturing your own relationship with your partner. The health of your unborn baby will be affected by her mental wellbeing and there are many things that you can do to support her. And remember to make time to support yourself; this is an important and sensitive time for you both!
Tips to help you go through this trimester
- Monthly doctors visits: In the second trimester, the doctor will need to track your pregnancy weight, and find out how the pregnancy is going. He or she may take blood or urine samples to check on protein, sugar, and antibody levels and others.
- Eat healthily: While you are eating for two, you will probably want to track how much you put on. Gaining weight too quickly can be a problem, and can lead to pregnancy-induced diabetes, or increase your baby’s risk of child obesity. Choose diets rich in vegetables and fruits, high fiber foods, low-fat dairy, avoiding fried and processed foods, saturated and trans fats.
- Avoid alcohol: If you go to parties, be careful what you drink. It’s important to make sure that the drinks haven’t been spiked. You can always try mock tails or virgin drinks.
- Exercise regularly: Even if you’re normally quite supple, you are more susceptible to injury during pregnancy. Relaxin is a hormone which relaxes the pelvic joints in preparation for childbirth, and it loosens other ligaments and joints too. That’s why it’s really important to pick the right activity. Choose low impact activities, such as walking, swimming or low-impact aerobics.
- Avoid constipation: To combat constipation, opt for foods with high fiber and drink plenty of fluids.
- Prevent urinary infections: To avoid urinary tract infections and bacterial vaginal infections, avoid thongs or underwear without a cotton crotch. Avoid using strong soaps, douches, antiseptic creams, feminine hygiene sprays, and powders.
The fact that everyone can see you are an expectant mother, hearing your baby’s heartbeat, and seeing how your unborn baby looks may make everything about your pregnancy seem more real than before. And you may feel your baby move inside you, which can happen in the 4th month of pregnancy but it is more likely to happen in the 5th month. While there can be inconveniences and physical discomfort during the 4th month of pregnancy, there is something wonderful going on inside your body. Try to relax and let nature take care of itself.