Another week has passed as you get ever closer to the big day when you finally get to meet your baby. The first fourteen weeks of your pregnancy have brought about a lot of changes in you and in your baby but those changes aren’t done just yet. Pregnancy week fifteen if filled with all sorts of new things to experience. Your baby is getting bigger and so are you but there’s still a lot left to take place before your baby is ready to greet the world. Let’s take a look at what you can expect from pregnancy week fifteen.
What’s Happening With Your Baby?
Pregnancy week fifteen can be a pretty exciting time for soon-to-be-Mom’s thanks to the fact that week fifteen can offer you the first chance to find out whether you’re going to have a son or daughter. Whether or not you choose to do so is up to you (we’ll talk a bit more about that decision in the next section) but just knowing that the option may be there is enough to get many mothers very excited. What this basically means is that for the first time in your pregnancy, your baby’s external genitals should now be visible via ultrasound. Keep in mind though, all babies develop differently. Some women may have to wait another week or two before it is possible to find out the gender of the baby. The delay doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with the baby or that you’ve done something wrong during your pregnancy. All it really means is that your baby just wants to keep you guessing a little while longer.
In weeks passed, we’ve talked a lot about what changes you would see from week to week if you were able to look through a window in your belly and see your baby. To be honest, you probably wouldn’t see a whole lot in the way of changes between pregnancy week fourteen and pregnancy week fifteen. That doesn’t mean everything is exactly the same though. Your baby is now almost four inches long and weighs as much as three ounces. Your baby’s fingers now have fully formed fingernails on the tips and their tiny joints are now able to bend which means their tiny arms and legs are now able to move.
Speaking of your baby’s tiny arms and legs, if you could see inside your belly, you’d notice some pretty significant changes with those arms and legs. Your baby’s legs have been trailing behind the arms when it comes to growth but that is starting to change with the legs not only catching up to the arms but beginning to surpass them in length.
Inside your baby, big things are taking place as well. By pregnancy week fifteen, your baby will start being able to sense light through its still closed eyelids. The air sacs in your baby’s lungs are also starting to develop, ensuring your baby will have fully functioning lungs when it is born. Right now your baby is still drawing amniotic fluid through its nose and upper respiratory tract which aids the development of those air sacs. It sounds a little weird considering we’re used to thinking of lungs processing air but this is how it all started for each and every one of us. Finally, inside your baby’s mouth, the taste buds on its tiny tongue are starting to crop up even though Baby probably doesn’t taste a whole lot just yet.
How You’re Feeling
By pregnancy week fifteen, you’ve probably started noticing your pants are fitting a little more snuggly and there is an extra five or ten pounds when you step on the scale. While your baby is still very small, your uterus is expanding and you’re eating more to keep baby healthy (and probably to satisfy your pregnancy cravings) so this is really to be expected. The extra weight isn’t a huge issue for most pregnant woman as no one gets pregnant not knowing they’ll gain weight, but some of the other pregnancy week fifteen symptoms you may start experiencing can be a bit of a different story.
The mucus membranes in your nose will start swelling at this point in your pregnancy which means you may start feeling congested, almost as if you have a cold. This can be irritating but far from the most troublesome symptom some women experience. There is more blood in your body now – necessary to support your baby’s growth and development – and the blood vessels in your nose are starting to expand. For some women, these two things combine to cause pregnancy nose bleeds. Pregnancy nose bleeds aren’t as common as some of the other pregnancy week fifteen symptoms we’re going to talk about, but they’re important symptoms to talk about. The reason for that is simple. If you do happen to be one of the women who experiences them, you are likely to be incredibly concerned about the fact that your nose seems to be bleeding for no reason. Don’t worry. It’s a lot more common than some would have you believe and for some women, they’re just a normal part of pregnancy.
The dreaded “pregnancy mask” may also start appearing for woman around week fifteen. The pregnancy mask is also a moderately uncommon pregnancy symptom but it is another one that is just a normal part of pregnancy for some women. It’s also worth pointing out some women won’t experience it with their first pregnancy but will experience it with the next. Some women will find they’re the exact opposite. They will have the pregnancy mask with their first pregnancy but not their second. Others still will experience it with every pregnancy while some won’t experience it at all. The pregnancy mask, or “mask of pregnancy”, is caused by the hormonal increases in your body and basically it is just a patch of skin on your face that is noticeably darker than the other skin on your face. The severity of the discoloration will also vary from woman to woman with some experiencing one patch, other experiencing multiple patches while others will experience it all over their face. Generally speaking, the dark patches can be covered up with makeup and will disappear after the baby is born.
Now, let’s talk about what you might be experiencing emotionally. While some women will enter week fifteen already knowing whether or not they want to know the sex of their baby, others will still be debating the subject. Don’t rush yourself. You don’t have to decide right then and there. If you’re undecided, it is always better to wait. Once you know, there’s no turning back. Don’t stress yourself out about it too much. It’s normal to feel uncertain. You’ll decide when you decide. It’s important though that you don’t try to force your partner into making the same choice you make as long as you also make sure your partner is willing to respect your decision. It can be tough but it’s the best way to ensure you’re both happy.
What You Should Be Focusing On
This week you should be focusing on the same things you’ve been focusing on over the last few weeks – staying comfortable, staying relaxed, making announcements and making appointments with your doctor. You’re also going to want to start seriously thinking about maternity clothes if you haven’t done so already. You’re going to need them before you know it.