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22 Weeks Pregnant: Symptoms, Tips, and More

22 Weeks Pregnant_ Symptoms, Tips, and More

Dear expectant mothers, how was your 21st week of pregnancy? 

You should tap yourselves on the back for a job well done so far. But we’re not so close to giving birth just yet. The coming 22nd week of pregnancy will be another milestone to celebrate!

At this stage, your little bundle of joy is growing and developing remarkably, weighing at least 1 pound! Your baby’s grip, vision, and hearing are all getting stronger too.

Let’s take a moment to dive into the exciting world of your baby’s development and your body’s changes during this week. Read on!

Baby Development During the 22-Week Mark

Baby Development During the 22-Week Mark

Witnessing your baby’s development at 22 weeks can be exciting. Now, you can start to interact and feel movements from your womb.

In week 22, your baby has now developed a pattern of sleep that may not always coincide with yours.

Although their eyes are not fully developed yet, they can now perceive light and darkness. Breathing is also something they are starting to work on their own now.

Here is more to expect from your baby’s development this week:

Improved Grip, Vision, and Hearing

During week 22, your baby’s tiny fingers are getting stronger, and their grip is improving. This means your little one is slowly learning their sense of touch.

You might be surprised to feel their movements becoming more purposeful as they explore their cozy home inside your womb.

Your baby’s vision and hearing begin to develop further.

Your baby’s eyes, though still closed, are now fully formed and can perceive light and shadows. They might even respond to a bright light by moving away or turning their head.

Additionally, their delicate ears are becoming more sensitive. This allows them to hear the muffled sounds of your voice, your heartbeat, and the world around them.

How Big Is My Baby at 22 Weeks?

At 22 weeks pregnant, your baby is about the size of a papaya! Your baby should measure approximately 10.9 inches (28 centimeters) from crown to heel. They will weigh around 15.2 ounces (430 grams) too.

Your baby is steadily growing to prepare for life outside the womb. Isn’t that just amazing?

And as your baby approaches their 23rd week and onward, they’ll break the 1-pound mark and be about the size of a small doll. 

At this point, it is important to continue your regimen of taking prenatal vitamins and pregnancy probiotics. These help support your baby’s development.

Your Body in 22 Weeks

As your baby continues to flourish, you may notice changes within your body. Let’s explore a couple of common occurrences during this stage of pregnancy:

Foot Growth

Yes, you read that right! It’s not just your belly that’s growing. Your feet may also experience a size increase too. 

Your feet will possibly become wider and longer. That’s because of the hormonal changes and weight gain that comes with being pregnant. 

In my experience, I had to buy a few pairs of new shoes since none of my favorite go-to sandals and flats fit me anymore! 

I highly recommend comfortable shoes with ample support. Skip the stilettos!

If you’re considering traveling while pregnant, get some compression socks. They help alleviate the discomfort of leg swelling that often comes with foot growth.

Coping With Tummy Touchers

One interesting thing I did not expect from being pregnant is the amount of people my growing belly seems to attract. Friends, co-workers, and family can’t seem to resist touching it!

I guess pregnant bellies can be adorable. The baby inside might look even cuter. But it’s essential to establish personal boundaries.

If you’re uncomfortable with unsolicited belly touching, don’t hesitate to communicate your preferences politely. 

Remember, your body is undergoing incredible changes. It’s essential to feel comfortable and respected throughout your pregnancy journey.

Symptoms You May Experience During the 22-Week Mark

Symptoms You May Experience During the 22-Week Mark

Pregnancy is a unique experience for every mommy-to-be. I’ve probably gone through most if not all myself!

As you progress further, you may encounter some of these common symptoms, especially during week 22:

1. Heartburn or Indigestion

It is perfectly normal to crave and want to eat your whole fridge when you’re in your 3rd trimester. After all, you’re eating for two. 

However, aside from the upward pressure from your expanding uterus, eating a lot can lead to discomfort and heartburn.

Based on experience, eating smaller, more frequent meals and avoiding spicy or greasy foods can help alleviate this symptom. 

Consider healthier snack options like fruit, veggies, nuts, and whole wheat crackers to prevent indigestion too.

2. Constipation 

Hormonal changes and the pressure on your digestive system from your growing uterus can contribute to constipation.

It is important to practice ways to normalize your bowel movement to prevent this discomfort.

Stay hydrated, consume fiber-rich foods, and discuss safe constipation remedies with your healthcare provider.

3. Faintness or Dizziness

As you already know, your expanding uterus is the common cause of a lot of these pregnancy symptoms. Occasional dizziness and light-headedness is another common one.

To prevent fainting and dizziness, drink at least eight glasses of water daily. It helps to keep a water flask around. 

Stand up slowly in case you are seated, and take short breaks when you’re working or exercising too.

4. Leg Cramps

As your body carries extra weight, leg cramps may become more frequent. Leg cramps may also be caused by the shortage of calcium or magnesium in your diet.

Regular stretching exercises, proper hydration, prenatal massages, and prenatal vitamins can help reduce the frequency and severity of leg cramps.

5. Stretch Marks

As your body adapts to the growing baby inside you, it is no surprise for stretch marks to appear. 

Keeping your skin well-hydrated with moisturizers and staying within a healthy weight range can help minimize their occurrence.

But that’s not it. You may notice other parts of your skin, like your hips, thighs, breasts, and lips, feeling dry and itchy. 

Apply some lip balm, nipple cream, and other moisturizers to ease the discomfort.

6. Protruding Navel

As your baby grows, your navel may begin to protrude or become more noticeable. Embrace this change as a beautiful reminder of the life growing inside you.

After delivering your baby, this should revert. But be prepared if your navel is slightly larger than pre-pregnancy.

Tips to Help You Manage Week 22

Tips to Help You Manage Week 22

While navigating the second trimester, here are some tips to help you manage week 22 and ensure a healthy and comfortable pregnancy:

1. Start Having Your Uterus Practice for Delivery 

Are you starting to feel squeezing sensations in your abdomen? This is your uterus practicing for delivery, also known as the Braxton Hicks contractions

Consider practicing perineal massages to help. Consult with your healthcare provider for guidance on this technique.

2. Ask Your Doctor About an fFN Screening

If you experience any signs of preterm labor or have a history of preterm birth, discussing fetal fibronectin (fFN) screening with your doctor may provide valuable information about the risk of premature delivery.

In any case, if you test positive, your ob-gynecologist might take steps to prolong your pregnancy and prepare your baby’s lungs for preterm delivery.

3. Stock Up on Magnesium

Magnesium can help strengthen your baby’s bones and teeth. You can find this mineral in pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, almonds, and cashews.

These work to stimulate enzyme function, regulate insulin, and control blood sugar levels too. Plus, magnesium helps reduce leg cramps and promotes relaxation.

Consult with your healthcare provider to be sure you’re getting enough magnesium from your diet and prenatal vitamins.

4. Squeeze in a Workout

Regular exercise during pregnancy can benefit both you and your baby. Engaging in safe, low-impact activities like prenatal yoga, swimming, or walking.

Consider wearing maternity bras for added support. Don’t worry about experiencing body odor too. 

That’s natural whether or not you are pregnant. What’s important is that you and your baby get the muscle power you need for a healthy pregnancy.

5. Keep Eating Healthy Food

As always, maintaining a balanced diet is crucial for your well-being and the development of your baby. 

Focus on consuming nutrient-dense foods that provide essential vitamins, minerals, and proteins.

6. Skip the Fillers

If you’ve got a dermatologist appointment while pregnant, you might want to skip the collagen fillers. 

It has not been proven that Botox and other injectable line fillers are safe during pregnancy.

7. Focus on Your Breathing

Deep breathing exercises can help you relax, reduce stress, and manage any anxiety from being pregnant. 

Take a few moments each day to focus on your breath and practice relaxation techniques.

Conclusion

Dear mothers-to-be, you’re more than halfway to delivering your little bundle of joy! 

As you reach the 22-week mark, your baby continues to thrive, and your body adapts to accommodate its growth. 

Remember to listen to your body, communicate your needs, and seek necessary support. 

Wishing you joy, love, and strength as you continue this incredible journey of motherhood!

Nayna Llenos
Nayna Llenos

Hi, I’m Nayna!
I’ve always wanted to be a mother, and I’m lucky and blessed to have two wonderful children to care for and love.
Despite this blessing, there are times wherein I do wonder if I truly am the mother my children need. Am I giving them the right food, care, and discipline to them?
But that is the beauty of parenting — you grow along with your children as they flourish to be their wonderful selves!
I wish to share my experiences with motherhood and how these tips can help you in your parenting journey.
I hope my advices and experiences will prove useful to you and that you have a smooth and wonderful journey as a mother!