Can you feel the baby reacting to noises and your caresses yet? Towards the end of the second trimester is when that starts to happen, so be on the lookout. Read more about this week.
As the baby’s brain connections get more adept at receiving signals from its receptor sensory organs, he is gradually storing sensory experiences - tastes of food that you share with him, your scent. What’s more, he is beginning to really react to sounds. He is used to your soundscape - your heartbeat, your breathing, even your stomach gurgling - and can distinguish this muffled interior hubbub from all the new sounds from outside: music, your voice, that of his dad, plus all the other less pleasant noises (you knew he was smart!). So, talk to your baby. Tell him what you’re up to, what you see, what you hear, even what you feel. From birth, he will recognize your voice, his dad’s, maybe even the music you liked to listen to during his sojourn.
Mum is laughing – that’s great! Did you know that the baby is more and more aware of how you are feeling? Her perception is quite well developed in addition to all the other more obvious physical developments. When you are happy, she enjoys your happiness, shares it even. When you are busy, she can feel your agitation. So do try not to overdo things, whether at work, in the house or during your leisure time. Even if you still feel perfectly fit, try to relax from time to time. Though nobody can be zen 24/7, a calm mum is what your little darling wants most.
This is a good time to double check you are doing all you can to get enough iron in your diet. Why is it important? If your diet isn’t rich enough in iron, the baby will still have its needs satisfied – but it will come from your iron reserves, which means you run a high risk of becoming anaemic. And not only during the pregnancy. Anaemia can be exacerbated by childbirth. Iron-rich foods are red meat, liver, lentils, and egg yolks. In some cases, your doctor may want to prescribe an iron supplement but don’t start taking one unless you’ve been directed to. No self-doctoring while pregnant!
By now everyone can see that you are having a baby. Many people can’t resist making predictions on whether you’re having a girl or a boy based on the way you are “carrying.” Although it is common to think where the bump sits on the mother determines its sex – up high means it’s a girl, down low by the hips is a boy for sure! (or some variation on those beliefs), this is a completely unfounded belief. Old wives' tale, anyone? Though all the predictions can be fun, if you really want to know the sex of your baby, ask your doctor during an ultrasound.