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What Happens in the Second Trimester of Pregnancy?


The second trimester of your pregnancy covers week 14 to week 26, and involves a whole lot of changes for you and your developing baby.

If you've had morning sickness you should find it easing off now – yay! – as your placenta takes over the production of your pregnancy hormones.  You will start to feel your baby moving in the second half of this trimester – or maybe even earlier if it’s not your first pregnancy.

second trimester in pregnancy infograph

Your changing body shape

Your changing body shape will definitely give you an excuse for a new wardrobe as your baby begins to visibly make its presence known  – even if it is one full of maternity jeans and floaty tops!

One piece of clothing you won't want to do without is a well-fitting maternity bra  – especially if your breasts are feeling heavy, or if you have already started producing colostrum. Getting professionally measured in store will help prevent sore, uncomfortable boobs as your pregnancy progresses.

If you haven’t already, then you may find that as your baby continues to grow you may start to experience indigestion or heartburn after bigger meals. Speak to your health professional who may advise you on what you can take to help with this. You could try stocking up on the peppermint tea and eating smaller portions more often.

Water retention around this time is fairly normal but it’s important to speak to your midwife if you develop this so they can rule out a condition called pre-eclampsia.

Antenatal appointments

You will be having antenatal appointments with your midwife throughout your second trimester, to check both yours and your growing baby's health. One of the tests you will be offered will be to check for down's syndrome. If you haven't had the combined nuchal scan and blood test at your dating scan, you will be offered a blood screening test for down's between week 15 and week 20 of your pregnancy.

Your growing baby

Amazingly, your growing baby will be around 11.5cm by week 16, and by week 20 will have tiny tooth buds in place – plus you’ll now also be half way through your exciting journey!

Through the rest of the second trimester your little one will continue to grow until they weigh more than the placenta. They will also develop, and be covered in, very fine hair, which to give it is medical term is called lanugo.

It is thought that this is to make sure your baby stays warm, but don’t panic your little one won’t come out all hairy as this usually disappears before they arrive into the world.

Towards the end of this second trimester you should feel your little one moving, and you may find their little sensitive ears respond to loud noises. At this point, experts recommend that you and your partner talk to your baby as they could respond to your voice. Playing them music is also another option, especially if you want them to grow up loving the same tones as you!

Find out more about your Second Trimester Journey with our week by week pregnancy guide.

Week 14

Week 15

Week 16

Week 17

Week 18

Week 19

Week 20

Week 21

Week 22

Week 23

Week 24

Week 25

Week 26

3 What Happens in the First Trimester of Pregnancy?
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