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As you enter the second trimester of pregnancy, you are beginning one of the most exciting times of being an expecting mother!

The second trimester of pregnancy takes place during months 4 6, or weeks 13-27. During this time, your baby will begin to take on a more recognizable human form. An ultrasound will reveal your child's gender and you will be able to see more distinguishing features such as hair and teeth!

Use the guide below to see what you and your family have to look forward to during this exciting time! Keep in mind these estimates are approximate and may not align with the progress of your individual pregnancy.

Month 4 of Pregnancy

During the fourth month of pregnancy, your child will begin to look more recognizable to you on ultrasound. Distinguishing features like fingers, toes and reproductive organs will also be visible!

At the next ultrasound your child's gender may be revealed, relieving one of the most anticipated parts of being expecting parents. This is referred to as the anatomy ultrasound, which is typically done around 18-20 weeks. Keep in mind, although learning the gender can be an exciting part of the anatomy ultrasound, this ultrasound will also check the growth of your baby and evaluate the development of your baby's anatomical parts, such as the brain, face, heart, kidneys, bladder, spine, legs and arms and more!  

Of course, some expecting parents may wish to keep the gender a surprise until delivery. Or, some may choose to have a gender reveal event. In either case, be sure to tell your physician your preference and kindly ask that gender is revealed during your anatomy ultrasound

By the end of the fourth month of pregnancy, your baby will be about 6 inches long and weigh up to 4 ounces!

Month 5 of Pregnancy

During the fifth month of pregnancy, there will be real hair beginning to grow on your baby's head. There is also a protective layer of hair called lanugo that grows on your baby's shoulders, back, and temples.

Your baby's skin also develops a protective coating called vernix. This defense mechanism allows the baby's skin to endure periods of long exposure to the amniotic fluid and disappears before birth.

Your first sensation of movement from your developing baby will likely occur and can take you by surprise! Sudden movements will also become more frequent as your baby's muscles develop during this time.

By the end of your fifth month of pregnancy, your baby will be about 10 inches long and can weigh up to 1 pound!

Month 6 of Pregnancy

During the sixth month of pregnancy, there will be even more distinguishing features on your baby than before!

For example, fingers and toe prints will be completely visible. Veins will also appear through your child's reddish, wrinkled and translucent skin. Additionally, your baby will begin to work the eyelids and actually open his or her eyes.

Your developing child will also become more responsive to the environment outside the womb. You may notice subtle changes in the baby's heart rate or even hiccups.

By the end of the sixth month of pregnancy, your baby will be about 12 inches long and weigh up to 1-2 pounds!

Why Is the Second Trimester Easier Than the First?

For many women, the second trimester is not plagued by the same morning sickness, fatigue and other negative side effects that were present during the first trimester. This will provide mothers with an opportunity to get back on their feet and make the final preparations for the coming birth.

However, if you experience any of these symptoms during the second trimester, be sure to alert your doctor before your next prenatal visit:

  • Cramps
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Dizziness

If you have any questions or concerns about the development of your child during pregnancy, be sure to contact your practitioner.

Darrick Peters, DO

Methodist Physicians Clinic Women's Center

Dr. Peters is an obstetrician / gynecologist with Methodist Physicians Clinic Women's Center. “While I was on my rotations during medical school I had a natural draw to OB/GYN,” Dr. Peters said. “I really enjoy developing and building relationships that are more long term with patients. The ability to help a woman through her pregnancy and then help bring life into the world is just incredible.” He believes that the role of the physician is to provide guidance. &q ...

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