Your baby will be quite small but his facial and other features have almost fully developed at this stage. You can see more development of the baby in the next 18 weeks. His or her skin still seems wrinkly, mainly because there is not sufficient weight gain to fill the skin out. Your baby’s lips starts to become more distinct. While the eyes have completely formed, the iris (the colored portion of the eye) still lacks pigment. The eyelids and eyebrows have fully formed and the pancreas is still developing at the 22nd week of pregnancy.
The top of the uterus can be felt at about ¾ of an inch above your belly button.
Your baby is approximately 9 inches long and weighs a whole 14 ounces. This phase of pregnancy is usually comfortable.
You can plan for childbirth education classes at this stage of pregnancy. This will help you know about what to expect during labor and birth. These classes will also teach relaxation techniques to use during labor. You can also get the assistance of labor coaches and talk to other couples who expect their baby. You must however try to complete your class by the end of your 37th week so that you will complete it by the time of labor. These classes are conducted by hospitals, community centers, and pregnancy centers.
Some women may experience pre-term labor at this stage. The common pregnancy symptoms include lower abdominal pain, dull backaches, pressure in the pelvic area, cramping, and a change in vaginal discharge. These symptoms will either be normal or may indicate preterm labor. Fetal fibronectin test can be done to find out about the risk of premature labor. This is conducted just like a pap smear and your results can be seen in 24 hours.
At this stage you’ll be eagerly looking forward to see and hold your baby. You can spend time with your partner by enjoying a quiet movie or spending a day at the beach which will relieve you of unwanted anxiety while allowing you to have fun which may not be difficult once the baby arrives.