Fifth Month Pregnancy - List Of Symptoms & Body Changes
Finally, got to see that cute baby bump? More kicks and movements of the little munchkin inside your belly? And, feeling full of energy lately? And, that endearing rosy glow that you can’t help but adore? Yeah, moms, we get it. You have entered the best month of pregnancy, and this month is all about you feeling good, and finally being able to adjust to the changes that go on inside your body.
What Happens to Your Baby During the Fifth Month of Pregnancy?
In the fifth month, your baby is going to weigh around 10 ounces and will be about 6-7 inches starting from crown to rump, putting them in the "little banana" section of the fetal development produce aisle. It starts to put on weight. Hair starts to grow on its head, and eyebrows will also grow. Lanugo, a kind of soft, fine hair will be covering your baby’s shoulders, back, and temples aiming to protect it. It usually sheds towards the end of the baby’s first week of life. One of the major developments is that your baby starts growing its vernix caseosa – a thick, white coating that covers your baby’s skin. It is a milky or cheesy fluid that protects your baby’s skin from the amniotic fluid that surrounds it. This too is shed just before birth. Your baby will be developing its muscles, and perhaps you will experience its movement for the first time this month. In most cases, moms experience those initial movements of the baby known as ‘quickening’ around 16-20 weeks. But if you haven’t felt anything yet, that’s alright too. Every pregnancy is different. One can even recognize these movements as early as 13-14 weeks. If you haven’t already, you can expect to feel your baby’s movements any day now. Your little child will learn a lot of skills apart from just kicking this month, and this includes twisting and turning inside the womb, blinking, yawning, sucking its thumb, and reacting to external stimuli such as loud noises. It will even learn how to hiccup, making you feel a jerky movement.
Your baby will be more active this month, and while you are thrilled to finally experience its movements, it’s absolutely normal if you feel a little annoyed at the frequent movements, particularly at night say when you are trying to sleep. So hey, don’t feel guilty for feeling annoyed. Also, isn’t it a birthright of every child to annoy their mom? Haha! Welcome to motherhood.
What are the Changes that Your Body Go Through?
You are likely to have a boost of energy. Your baby bump will cutely show up a bit. You will feel good and comfortable, although you don’t need to always feel comfortable, particularly with a growing belly. The growth of your belly may also trigger a few pregnancy symptoms about which we will talk at length shortly. And, you may experience that beautiful ‘pregnancy glow’, and look more vibrant. Some changes in the texture and growth of your nails are also likely to occur.
Pregnancy Symptoms in the Fifth Month
According to some women, the fifth month is the most enjoyable month of pregnancy. And, while we say that it’s the best month, you may still not get rid of certain troubling pregnancy symptoms. Below, we have listed a few symptoms that you may experience during your fifth-month pregnancy.
1. Pregnancy Stretch Marks
Experiencing stretch marks in pregnancy is quite common. Most pregnant moms start spotting stretch marks towards the end trimesters, generally the sixth and the seventh trimesters. However, some women also form stretch marks earlier. With the baby growing inside your womb and your belly growing because of that, your physical skin gets stretched giving rise to stretch marks. Weight gain also results in stretch marks. Most women develop stretch marks on their abdomen; however, they also notice stretch marks around other areas such as thighs, breasts, lower back, hips, and buttocks.
Topically applying an oil or a specialized cream, that specifically aims to increase skin elasticity, regularly from the first trimester of your pregnancy, will keep your skin hydrated, and supple thus preventing the stretch marks to some extent.
2. Itchy Skin
You are likely to experience mild itching which is common during pregnancy. The increased flow of blood supply to the skin causes itchiness. As your baby slowly grows inside you, your belly grows, you gain weight, and your skin gets stretched, and even becomes drier, which triggers itchiness. But you must make sure not to scratch your skin because at this point your skin is really thin and delicate, and scratching your skin may worsen the condition. Plus, the scratches may aggravate stretch marks. However, severe itching is concerning and can be a sign of an alarming liver condition named obstetric cholestasis. It’s very rare and affects less than 1 among 100 women. But you must seek medical advice if your itchy skin is bothering you a lot.
Wear light natural fabrics like cotton which allow your skin to ‘breathe’ and which don’t rub against your skin worsening the irritation, and avoid synthetic materials like nylon, etc. Also, use mild and gentle natal-safe products on your skin.
3. Leg Cramps
While the exact cause of leg cramps remains unknown, many assume that the extra weight that you carry puts stress on your legs triggering leg cramps. Blood circulation changes may also lead to leg cramps. The nerves and blood arteries that go down your legs are also pressured by your growing baby. According to some doctors, a deficiency of calcium in your body, and your body’s ability to process it may also lead to cramps. Also, make sure to get adequate sleep.Your brain keeps sending signals to your muscles and if you lack the required amount of sleep, it can disrupt these signals, thus causing muscle tightness.
4. Varicose Veins
Swollen veins bulging at the surface of your skin are known as varicose veins. It’s a harmless pregnancy symptom, and you have nothing to worry about.. These are hereditary, probably passed on to you by your mother or grandmother. They occur when the uterus exerts pressure on the large vein (the inferior vena cava) that transports blood from your feet and legs back to the heart.
But there are a few things that may be done to prevent them. Go for a low-impact exercise by consulting your doctor, sleep on your left side to keep the pressure away from the inferior vena cava, move as much as possible, and avoid crossing your legs while sitting. Try raising your feet frequently, and if possible. It’s a good idea to invest in a maternity hose in your fifth month of pregnancy.
Around 50-80% of the women experience back pain between the fifth and seventh months of pregnancy. In some cases, it may begin as early as 8-12 weeks. The pain can range from mild to severe to chronic. Many factors can cause back pain in pregnant women.
A. Weight gain – A pregnant mom gains around 11-15 kgs during pregnancy. That weight, along with the weight of the growing baby, has to be supported by the spine which causes the lower back pain. Blood vessels and nerves in the pelvis and back are additionally pressured by the weight of the developing baby and uterus.
B. Center of Gravity - As your uterus and baby develop, your center of gravity will shift forward, causing your posture to shift.
C. Surge in Hormone Levels - Hormones generated during pregnancy relax ligaments in the pelvic area and loosen joints in preparation for the delivery process. This alteration may have an impact on the amount of support your back receives regularly.
D. Postures - Back discomfort can be triggered or exacerbated by poor posture, prolonged standing, and bending over.
E. Stress - Stress tends to build up in the body's vulnerable spots. During stressful phases of your pregnancy, you may experience an increase in back discomfort due to changes in your pelvic area.
Avoid lifting heavyweights. Walk, do yoga, or exercise by consulting your doctor. Sit in chairs that offer good, straight-back support. Use footrests, and avoid crossing your legs. Wear the shoes appropriate for you. Extremely high heels and absolute flat ones should be avoided. According to experts, you must wear 2-inch-high heels to maintain a proper alignment of the body.
6. Skin Changes
Skin changes during pregnancy can be saddening and annoying at the same time. The hormonal changes may lead to the darkening of the skin around your nipples. Some women may also experience a condition named ‘chloasma’ - where the woman develops irregular dark patches on their face. This is also referred to as ‘melasma’ or ‘mask of pregnancy.
This simple home remedy may be useful - Make a mixture of one tablespoon of lemon juice and a pinch of turmeric, and apply it to the affected areas. Wash off with cold water after 5 minutes. This helps significantly in reducing pigmentation. Or, prepare a paste of almond and honey, apply it to the affected areas, and leave it for 15 minutes before washing it off in order to get soft skin with an even skin tone.
If the pressure from your developing uterus pulls on your blood vessels, you may feel dizzy. This can happen in the second or third trimester, and it's more likely when the baby grows considerably. Dizziness can also be caused by lying on your back.
The cruel hormones are once again the villain here that cause you discomfort. The hormone progesterone relaxes the muscles in your colon, allowing food to stay in the digestive tract for longer. The benefit is that nutrients will have more time to absorb into your bloodstream and reach your baby. The disadvantage is that you will be stuck in a waste-product traffic bottleneck. Your enlarging uterus also takes up vital space normally occupied by your bowel, causing it to become cramped and unable to function correctly.
Eat fiber-rich foods. Stick to fresh fruits and veggies, and dried fruits. Eat lots of green leafy vegetables. Stay hydrated, and avoid refined grains and food made from them like white bread, refined cereals, pasta, white rice, etc.
Fifth Month Pregnancy Checklist
- Keep paying regular visits to your doctor as often as advised by your doctor. Do not skip appointments with your doctor.
- Have your Ultrasound scan and anomaly done since these are important prenatal tests.
- Eat good food. Stick to a good, balanced diet that gives you the right amounts of proteins, vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and fats.
- Talk to your mother, and grandmother and get tips from them about pregnancy and child care. Listen to their pregnancy stories and delivery experiences.
Warning SignsIf you notice any of the following symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.
- Pain in the stomach or the pelvic area.
- Severe cramps
- Painful or dark brown urine
- Vaginal bleeding
- If you have a temperature of more than 100.4 degrees
- Severe Vomiting
- Vaginal discharge that seems abnormally excessive or has a foul odor.
Tips for Dads-To-Be
- Accompany your wife for all her check-ups and appointments at the gynecologist.
- Go shopping with her for getting maternal essentials
- Treat her with a gentle, relaxing neck shoulder massage, or a foot massage.
- Talk to your baby inside of her, and try to feel those first kicks!
- Cuddle up along with her and watch some movies typically recommended for new parents.
While you enjoy the best phase of your pregnancy, it’s equally important that you don’t forget about the needs of your body. Eat good food, exercise if the doctor permits, and sleep well. Pamper yourself and indulge in activities that give you joy. Dear moms, take care of yourself in the best possible ways as you progress in this nine-month journey. Because, when you do, not just you, but also your baby will stay healthy, and we want good health for both of you. Stay safe, take care!
Know more : Fourth Month Pregnancy Symptoms