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Size of Baby

36.6cm

Development of Baby

As your baby continues to strengthen their respiratory muscles their bronchioles, and alveoli (the intricate airways within the lungs) develop. Over the next few weeks, small amounts of surfactant will start to be produced. Surfactant is a substance within the alveoli that helps with the initial expansion of the lungs. Next time you go to blow up a balloon, put a little washing up liquid in the balloon and see how much easier it is to inflate, this is similar to the role of surfactant.

Maternal Symptoms

As your baby continues to grow and your abdomen continues to stretch, you may feel a tightness in your tummy button, and you may notice a slightly red patch around it if you have pale skin. This is normal as your skin stretches and you are seeing the capillary beds beneath your skin. The regular use of moisturiser on the area should help it to feel less tight.

Things to Consider

Come back to the list you made around 21 weeks. You should now have informed your work of the leave you intend to take, and if your partner is taking leave, or you are taking shared leave, then they should have also informed their place of work. You may want to start exploring your antenatal education options too. You can visit the blog post “Things to Consider with Looking into Antenatal Education Options” as a good starting point.

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