17 Weeks Pregnant
- July 15, 2021
- by Melissa Lawrence
Hey there, mamas and dadas-to-be! Can you believe that each day brings you closer and closer to the halfway point in your pregnancy? You’ve been through a lot already, and I’m sure you’ve handled it with grace. The challenges of pregnancy prepare you for life as a mother. After this, absolutely nothing can stop you at all! I’m generally feeling good, especially since my week 16 ultrasound went well and the prenatal testing is behind me. With those concerns settled and the fatigue of the first trimester gone, I’m starting to getting organized for life with baby. That brings me to the 17th week of my pregnancy and yours. Let’s take a look.
17 Weeks Pregnant: Recurring Symptoms
17 Weeks Pregnant: Common Symptoms
Whether you prepare for hay fever every spring or have never had a peanut allergy at all, you may experience pregnancy allergies. If you do already experience allergies, these have the chance of getting worse during your pregnancy. I recommend avoiding the allergen in question as much as possible. If you are prone to hay fever, this may be more difficult, but try to stay inside and wear sunglasses if you do go outside. I was concerned about taking pain medicine while pregnant, so I asked my doctor, can you take benadryl while pregnant? My doctor told me that Claritin (which I take on a bad day), Benadryl, and Chlor-Trimeton are safe for pregnant women. I would still get your doctor’s permission before taking these meds. Being pregnant with an allergy is no fun, but taking these steps can make it manageable.
Increased Body Fluids
During pregnancy, your body will begin to retain more fluids in order to support the growth of your baby. This added fluid also helps make your body more soft by making bones and ligaments more flexible, which is necessary during delivery to allow your baby to fit through your birth canal. Because of increased fluids, I have noticed that my eyes have become more blurry and there is slight swelling in my hands and feet if I stay still for too long.
Fun Fact About Pregnancy
Your uterus expands from the size of an orange to a watermelon during pregnancy – 500x larger than its pre-pregnancy size!
Stages of Fetal Development: Baby Growth & Size at 17 Weeks
At week 17, your baby weighs 5 ounces and is 5 inches long, about the size of a pear — my eldest son’s favorite fruit! At this point, your baby is beginning to gain some fat, which will ultimately replace the fuzzy lanugo. By the time you go into labor, fat will make up one third of your baby’s body weight. This will be a marked difference from early on when your baby looked skinny and alien-like.
In more exciting news, your baby’s brain is beginning to take control of some bodily functions, most notably the heart. Prior to this week, your baby’s heartbeat was very fast and erratic, regulated only by the heart muscles. This week, however, your baby’s brain begins to regulate the heart rate to a constant of around 140-150 beats per minute.
As previously stated, your baby is continuing to make strides perfecting breathing and certain reflexes that are innate, such as the sucking reflex. All of these reflexes and complex movement patterns will be mastered before the baby takes its first breath of air.
My Pregnant Belly Progression
My normal exercise routine has been significantly altered. Because I’ve developed some pain and swelling in my hips, I’ve been laying off the yoga for a couple days. As for my belly, it’s finally a clear bump! This means I’ve had to change up my wardrobe, which now consists of yoga pants and loose-fitting tops. Check out my 4 months pregnant belly!
Childbirth Classes: What Is There to Learn?
Are you concerned, worried, or anxious about your impending due date? I am, even though I’ve already been through birth five times. Especially for first time mothers, the prospect of labor and the pain that comes with it can be incredibly overwhelming. What helped me in more ways than one was taking a childbirth class. Knowledge is power, and learning all about labor, delivery, and newborn care along with methods for managing pain helped me relax and become less stressed, which ultimately allowed me to sleep better. There are also baby classes meant to help adjust your children to having a new sibling! Now is a great time to do some research and sign up for prenatal classes before they fill up. Be sure to research the Lamaze method, Bradley method, HypnoBirthing, and the Alexander method.
Your Pregnancy at 17 Weeks: Prenatal Appointments
Here are the prenatal tests that are available at 17 weeks of pregnancy:
Week by Week Pregnancy Food Guide
Quick, Healthy Meal Tip
Rice Cake with Toppings: top a rice cake with nut butter and some fruit for a quick, healthy snack!
Why Almond Butter? Almond butter is a great replacement for peanut butter if you’re interested in trying something new. This almond spread is more healthy than peanut butter (not that peanut butter isn’t healthy), in that it contains more vitamins, minerals, fiber, monounsaturated fat, Vitamin E, iron, and calcium. Because it is high in monounsaturated fat, almond butter helps your body control blood sugar and can reduce your chances of developing heart disease.
How Many Months Is 17 Weeks?
Although we typically don’t express our pregnancy progress in months, at 17 weeks you are around 4 months pregnant.
Week 17 Pregnancy Checklist
- What to Expect & What to Expect When You’re Expecting – 5th Edition (2016)
- The Bump
- Baby List
- The Mama Natural Week to Week Guide to Pregnancy & Childbirth (2017)
- Mayo Clinic’s Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy – Second Edition (2018)
- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists