16 weeks pregnant is a milestone to celebrate and savor. Find out what to expect when you’re 16 weeks pregnant, find out whether you can feel baby yet and what your uterus looks like. What size is a 12-week-pregnant uterus? What are the 8th week symptoms? When does baby start to move?
Your baby at week 16 of pregnancy
By week 16, your unborn baby is able to move her arms and legs and bend at the elbows. Now that she’s becoming bigger, you can feel a lot of her wiggles.
Right about now, your little one is the size of a modest apple or orange. Her skeleton continues to lengthen and develop normally. The thin, translucent skin and obvious veins of an infant belie the fact that she is actually older than a baby.
Also, a very fine hair called lanugo is starting to grow on your kid. Until about the 26th week of pregnancy (week 28 of your pregnancy), it will continue to expand.
16 weeks pregnant is how many months?
When you are 16 weeks pregnant, you are officially in 4 months of your pregnancy. Just another 5 months to go! Congratulations, you’ve already made great progress!
How big is your baby at 16 weeks pregnant?
At 16 weeks your baby, also known as a foetus, is currently about 110 gm in weight and 12.5 cm in length from head to bottom which is about the size of a large apple, or avocado. They are growing quickly and are about to have a growth spurt. They will roughly double in size over the next month.
16 weeks pregnant: baby’s development
Your baby’s growth and weight are currently doubling every two weeks. Because of how big your baby has grown, its little heart is already pumping roughly 6.6 gal (25 l) of blood every day, and this amount will only keep rising.
Your baby has full joint and limb mobility in the womb at 16 weeks. It has even started to move with more intention. Additionally, their reflexes are growing, and by this point, they may even start sucking their thumbs! Even though their eyelids are still closed, their eyes function as well. They are turning away from light and moving their eyes side to side.
Their tiny ears, which began at their neck, are almost in their final position. Not only can your baby hear, but it can also hear and know your voice. According to studies, babies can even recall the songs they listened to when they were growing inside of you. The infant’s body is starting to straighten, and its head is almost up. They are beginning to make facial emotions as their facial muscles become stronger. Additionally, it is yawning inside the womb!
The fetal development stage of 16 weeks also makes your kid appear cuter. The infant’s skin is still translucent, and there is little baby fat on them. Your child appears to have unusually long legs and to be somewhat slender. Your 16-week-old baby is also growing taste buds, and its nails are starting to sprout.
According to some scientists, the development of the lungs’ airways is completed about 16 weeks after conception. Nevertheless, the alveoli, or sites of gas exchange in the lungs, still need to grow and mature.
Last but not least, fetal responses to stress and pain have been observed as early as 16 weeks after conception. The fetus reacted by recoiling when surgeons used a needle to take blood from a vein close to its liver. Additionally, significant elevations in stress hormones were found in the blood of the fetus but not the mother, demonstrating that the fetus’ response to stress was distinct from the mother’s.
Sleeping positions at 16 weeks pregnant
Your body at 16 weeks pregnant
You should start to feel your baby move in the upcoming weeks. At first, you’ll simply feel a flutter, but soon you’ll be able to recognize kicks and hiccups as well. Expect your back and abdomen to hurt more as your unborn child grows.
Additionally, as the tissue fills out and prepares for milk production, your breasts may feel bigger and more painful. You may have headaches, dizziness, and even mood swings as pregnancy hormones continue to pulse through your body to guide your body in the production of babies.
The uncomfortable symptoms of the first trimester of pregnancy should have subsided by now. Most women will find their pregnancy symptoms considerably more manageable after 16 weeks. You may even discover that you regain some of the energy you lost in the first few months of pregnancy.
Still, just because you’re just 16 weeks along doesn’t mean you won’t experience any new pregnancy symptoms. At 16 weeks pregnant, you may notice any of these changes:
Travel while Pregnant
You enter your second trimester during a few weeks when your health is better than it has been in a long time (goodbye nausea, hello baby bump). Your pregnancy glow is in full bloom, and maternity jeans look great on your round belly. Now is the ideal time to travel if you intend to do so at any point during your pregnancy.
Due to the higher chance of miscarriage during the first trimester, doctors advise against travel. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) advises against traveling during the third trimester due to the possibility of going into early labor (no one wants to go into preterm labor on the beach in Oahu). You can leave for some R&R after taking a few safety steps before your days and nights are taken up with changing diapers and feedings.
Talk to your healthcare provider
Consult your healthcare practitioner about your travel options before you make any decisions. Even though you might feel okay, she should check on your health before you leave. When you discuss your trip plans with her, you should already have a few spots in mind.
For instance, if you’ve experienced issues with water retention, she could advise you to avoid a humid environment because it could make your situation worse. Additionally, ask her to make copies of your prenatal documents so you can bring them along in case something happens. And if you need to call her, make sure you have access to her phone number on those documents.
Bring an approved first aid packet
A basic first aid kit with useful travel-friendly medications should be in your luggage (for instance Tylenol, anti-diarrhea, heartburn, and cold medicines). Any over-the-counter and prescription medications you intend to bring on your trip should be discussed with your doctor. Not all otc medications are safe to take during pregnancy.
Plan on some restrictions
Even with a doctor’s OK, bear in mind when planning your trip that you won’t be able to do everything. Because they don’t want you to go into premature labor or experience difficulties any more than you do, resorts, theme parks, and other travel service providers may place limits on pregnant visitors. Consider foregoing the roller coasters and the scuba diving in favor of leisurely vacation activities like visiting the spa.
While you’re there
While carrying an unborn baby, it’s not a good idea to go on a wild journey. Take it easy and look after yourself while you’re away. One mistake you should not make is to spend the entire day outside doing nothing. Overuse of the feet can cause unpleasant swelling.
Additionally, it’s important to drink enough of water. A lack of fluids in the body might bring on labor contractions prematurely. So, be hydrated and take frequent bathroom breaks. (Delaying visits to the restroom might irritate your bladder and cause infections in the urinary tract.)
If you have any medical concerns while traveling, please don’t hesitate to call your doctor. Give your doctor a quick call if you have any concerns regarding your current state of health or any medications you intend to take.
Where to go
It’s important to follow your doctor’s orders on where you can travel. If you’re pregnant and have anxiety about flying, taking an hour-long car ride instead may be the best option.
U.S. shores could be a better option than those in other countries. Some international locations, especially those in developing nations, may feature impressive resort amenities, but limited access to medical care.
Having Trouble Sleeping at 16 Weeks Pregnant
Having difficulties sleeping is a common pregnant symptom, and it’s especially common in the second and third trimesters, when other pregnancy symptoms peak and a growing belly makes it difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position.
When you’re 16 weeks pregnant, it could hurt to sleep on your stomach, but studies indicates that lying on your back puts more strain on the vena cava, the main blood vessel that returns blood to the heart.
Your blood circulation will increase if you sleep on your left side, which will also be good for your uterus, kidneys, and fetus. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, try placing a pillow between your knees and another under your stomach. If the problem persists, consult your doctor.
16 weeks Pregnant: Wellness and Nutrition
What should you avoid during pregnancy? Doctors agree that you should avoid the following:
- Activities that may cause you to fall, or that place pressure or force on your belly
- Intense, overly vigorous exercise – if you’re too out of breath to talk, you’re probably exercising too hard.
- Drinking alcohol, smoking, and caffeine (ask your doctor how much caffeine you should consume each day)
- Sweeteners such as saccharine and herbal sweeteners (ask your doctor if artificial sweeteners are appropriate)
- Prescription and over-the-counter medications (check with your doctor about what’s safe during pregnancy)
- Paint, cleaning products, and solvents can expose you to chemicals and fumes. Acrylic and latex paints are generally considered safe. However, you should consult your doctor before helping around the house or in the nursery.
- Saunas and hot tubs
- Chemical treatments for your hair, such as dye and perms
Early pregnancy symptoms at 16 weeks
At the end of the first trimester, or week 16, you will enter a new phase of your pregnancy. The second trimester of pregnancy consists of months four through six. This week, you should begin to feel less anxious.. Some women feel nauseous and tired right away, while others don’t begin to experience symptoms until later in the first trimester.
Breast changes and tenderness
Tenderness and slight alterations in the shape of your breasts are common pregnancy symptoms around the 16th week. The hormones estrogen and progesterone are responsible for these alterations, which help your body get ready for breastfeeding after giving birth. You might find that your breasts are more sensitive to touch and feel fuller than usual.
Fatigue (constant tiredness or weakness)
One of the most typical symptoms of early pregnancy is fatigue, which frequently starts at this point. Although there are many causes of exhaustion during pregnancy (including changes in hormone levels), some research indicates that inadequate sleep brought on by nighttime awakenings from unpleasant sleeping positions may also be a role.
Heartburn or gas
There may be a rise in heartburn and flatulence during the 16th week of pregnancy. This is because progesterone produces a decrease in the tone of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) muscle, which typically prevents stomach acid from entering the esophagus. This can cause heartburn and discomfort by allowing stomach acid to flow back up into the esophagus. Try spreading your meals out more, staying away from items that are known to cause heartburn (such spicy foods), and drinking lots of water.
Mood swings and crying spells
The 16th week of pregnancy is a vulnerable time for women, when they are more likely to experience mood swings and crying spells. Until your hormone levels settle, this will have an impact on your mental and emotional well-being. This is a common occurrence for pregnant women; one study indicated that 75% of women felt emotional shifts like irritability or depression in the first trimester.
Food cravings, aversions, or both
During your 16th week of pregnancy, It’s common to crave foods that are high in protein, such as meat and cheese, which are essential for your baby’s development. You may also have strong aversions to certain foods, like vegetables or fruits that you normally enjoy eating but now find repulsive. This is normal—just make sure you don’t completely eliminate any food groups from your diet.
Pregnant stretch marks
In the 16th week of pregnancy, stretch marks, sometimes called striae gravidarum, may occur on the belly. Stretch marks form when the skin is forced apart and then stretched beyond its natural elasticity, as happens during rapid growth or weight gain (like pregnancy)
Indigestion, or constipation
During the 16th week of pregnancy, you may suffer gastrointestinal issues like indigestion or constipation. Pregnancy hormones like progesterone and estrogen might increase the likelihood of gastrointestinal issues including indigestion. These hormones slow down digestion by relaxing the digestive tract, preventing food from being swallowed whole. You can reduce the frequency and severity of indigestion during pregnancy by cutting out on high-fat and sugary foods and eating more often, smaller meals (like sweets or fried foods).
Increase in visible veins
In most cases, varicose veins in pregnant women are quite safe. They occur because of stress on the big vein (the inferior vena cava) that transports blood from the lower body to the heart. Itching, discomfort, and even pain are possible side effects of having varicose veins. Thankfully, once you’ve given birth, they typically disappear. Varicose veins can be treated if they cause you discomfort or pain. If you have any questions regarding how to treat your particular symptoms, you should talk to a doctor.
No symptoms at 16 weeks pregnant
Yes, it is possible to be 16 weeks pregnant with no obvious signs of pregnancy at all! It’s important to remember that every pregnant lady is unique. If you’re one of the happy few who never gets morning sickness, for instance, you may relax and enjoy your pregnancy. But if you do have symptoms, you should definitely pay heed to them. If you are pregnant and have any health concerns, you should always consult your doctor.
16 weeks pregnant belly size (baby bumb)
16 weeks pregnant ultrasound
During the 16-week ultrasound, you should expect to observe a completely formed but very small baby. However, if they are developing normally, you should be able to see arms, legs, fingers, toes, and even facial expressions during the ultrasound.
During the scan, the heart may be seen beating and the brain can be viewed. The 16-week ultrasound is a fantastic chance to ask your doctor all of your questions, including whether or not your baby is healthy and developing normally.
The importance of prenatal vitamins during pregnancy
During pregnancy, you need a greater amount of folic acid and iron. Why? Here are some reasons:
Folic acid prevents neural tube defects
These defects affect the fetal brain and spinal cord in a significant way. Preferably, you should begin taking extra folic acid three months before you become pregnant.
The placenta and baby require iron to develop
The body uses iron to make blood to supply oxygen to the baby. Additionally, iron helps prevent anemia, a condition in which the blood lacks healthy red blood cells
It’s important to consult your doctor or healthcare provider to find out which are the best prenatal vitamins to take before pregnancy, and how to calculate your expected delivery date.
16 weeks pregnant hCG levels
At 16 weeks pregnant, your hCG levels can range from about 8,904–55,332 mIU/m.
Explore more in your pregnancy week-by-week
Follow your pregnancy week-by-week to find out how your baby is growing and what is happening to your body.
First Trimester Weeks:
Second Trimester Weeks
Third Trimester Weeks
Pregnant Women Also Asked:
Got questions about week 6? Other ladies have wondered this…
- How pregnancy happens. (n.d.)
- Human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (HCG). (2018.)
- Knowing if you are pregnant. (2019).
- Navigating your pregnancy. (n.d.).
- Pregnancy. (2017).
- Pregnancy: Sensitivity and specificity. (n. d.).
- Pregnancy tests. (n.d.)
- Pregnancy week by week. Weeks 1–2. (n.d.).
- Stages of pregnancy. (n.d.).