Week 16– Quickening!
As we saw through the last few weeks, the little one is now able to move his/her arms and legs. You may not be able to feel the movements, but you may feel a slight flutter in the womb! This is known as “quickening” (felt earlier in women where the placenta lies behind the uterus). Your baby this week weighs around 95-100 grams and is now the size of an avocado.
So, let’s summarize the main events that you will see this week:
Your baby’s muscles and bones are in their final position. In this week the nervous system starts exerting control over the various processes.
The baby’s legs are more developed, and toenails are also seen. Also, the head is more erect when compared to the previous weeks.
The patterning on little one’s scalp has begun, though no hair is visible yet.
The baby’s lungs are fully developed with your baby practicing inhaling and exhaling in the amniotic fluid.
The baby’s heart now pumps around 25 qt. of blood every day
The development of the umbilical cord, with two arteries and a vein, is now completed. It is covered by a jelly-like substance (Wharton’s jelly) which protects it.
Meconium, which in future becomes the first bowel movement of your baby after birth, starts production this week.
Developmental Milestones Summary:
Your baby’s circulatory system, lungs, and urinary system are fully formed.
An ultrasound shows the baby’s well-developed face and external genitalia (can be used to determine the gender of the child, but the laws in India are strict and do not allow so). Any bodily deformities or defects can be assessed like last week. Your doctor may use a Doppler device to check the baby’s heartbeat and assess your baby’s health. (some midwives predict that if the baby’s heart rate is more (over 140/min), it is a girl and likewise if the heart rate is less (below 140/min), it is a boy.
The baby now measures 4 1/2 inches from crown to rump (CRL).