Pregnancy Week 24
Baby Looks Like A Real Person!
During this week in your pregnancy, baby is gaining weight and growing longer. Although he is still very tiny, he looks like a complete person by week 24. All of his organ systems continue to develop and mature and his central nervous system, digestive, reproductive, and circulatory systems are maturing. Baby's lungs are beginning to form tiny branches, which will produce surfactant as the baby's lungs mature. Surfactant is a lipoprotein substance that is secreted naturally in the lungs. If there is a lack of surfactant then respiratory problems result, especially in babies that are born prematurely.
Oh, That Touchable Pregnant Tummy
The amniotic fluid surrounding baby begins to increase in volume at this point in your pregnancy. By the time you are ready to deliver, there will be about two pints of amniotic fluid in your uterus. Of course, your uterus is growing and is now nearly two inches above your navel, making your belly very touchable. In fact, you may find that many women want to touch or rub your pregnant belly. Some people believe it is good luck to rub a pregnant woman's tummy. However, if you are uncomfortable with the idea of strangers touching your belly, you can ward them off by covering your belly with your own hand or arm and telling them that you prefer not to be touched, or that you're really quite sensitive.
Rubbing your tummy is an excellent way for you to connect with your baby. He is very conscious of sound and goings on outside of the womb. He can hear and recognize your voice as well. Read to your baby, rub your tummy soothingly, and talk to the baby often. When he is born, he will recognize your voice and your scent.
Baby's Running Out of Space: Hey Mom, I Need Some Elbow Room
Now that baby has grown to such a size, there is less room for him in the uterus. The random kicking will be replaced with rhythmic movement and you should be able to determine waking and sleeping times soon. His kicks will be much stronger than before, due in large part to the lack of room he is now experiencing. It isn't unusual for a baby to kick hard enough to make Mommy shout.
Babies move at the rate of about ten times per hour, even if you do not always feel the movement. Some of it is quite subtle, while some can straighten you right out. If you are concerned at all about your baby's movement, try drinking a glass of juice then sit back and watch your belly. Usually drinking juice stimulates the baby to the point of action. It is very reassuring to feel the baby move. Enjoy it when it happens. It will not be long before baby is in your arms and you may find you are missing the feeling of movement in your belly.