Pregnancy

Fetal development in the 2nd trimester

Expectant parent holding belly with both hands

This is the second part of a 3 part series on your baby’s development during pregnancy. If you missed it, you can find out about your baby’s development in the first trimester.

What do I need to know?

The middle part of your pregnancy, also called the second trimester is about 3 months long. Your baby grows quite quickly during this time. You will need more calories every day to support your baby’s growth. For most women, this means having an extra two or three Food Guide servings daily.


What’s happening and when?

Week

Highlights of Development

14

Early breathing, sucking and swallowing begins

Your baby can smile and frown

The kidneys start to make urine

fetal development 4 months

15

Your health care provider can hear the baby’s heart beat using a Doppler

16

Joints can move

17

Hair appears on the head

Eyebrows and eyelashes start to appear

fetal development 5 months

 

18

Muscles are well formed

You will begin to feel your baby move around this time. It may feel like fluttering at first.

19

A white protective coat called vernix begins to form on your baby’s skin to protect it from the amniotic fluid

20

Your baby is about half the length at birth

21

Fine hair called lanugo appears on the body fetal development 6 months

22

Skin is wrinkled and there isn’t any fat underneath

23

You will feel and even see  stronger kicks and movements

24

The uterus is usually just above your belly button at this time

25

The first stool is collecting in the bowel

26

Eyes may be open now


By the end of second trimester, your baby is approximately 32 cm long and weighs about 700 g.

Fetal development follows a predictable course but it’s important to note that the measurements mentioned may vary from your baby’s actual length and weight. If you have any questions or concerns about your baby’s development, be sure to speak with your health care provider. Stay tuned for more information on your baby’s development in the third trimester.

 

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