How Does Your Body Change During Week 20 of Pregnancy?

5 min read

Written by Gayathri Lakshminarayanan

Gayathri Lakshminarayanan

pregnancy week 20

You must be delighted with the way the second trimester is treating you. Your appetite is improving, and your baby is now the size of a banana. You might feel the little kicks and pokes around the uterus. This is also known as quickening. Your bump is evident and might grow by half an inch higher every week. In this article, let us discuss how does your body change during week 20 of pregnancy. Let us get started.

How Does Your Body Change During Week 20 of Pregnancy?

During week 20 of pregnancy, the increasing pregnancy hormones lead to many changes in the body. The symptoms and changes from the previous weeks may also continue to haunt you in the 20th week. Let us discuss the signs your body might undergo during week 20 of pregnancy.

1. Protruding Belly Button

During week 20 of pregnancy, most women might notice that their belly button is protruding. It is widespread and mostly painless. As the uterus continues to expand, it pushes the abdomen forward. The protruding belly button is the result of an expanding uterus. Some women may experience pain around their navel. While there is no concrete evidence or reason for such pain, experts have concluded that women whose belly button is located in the thinnest area against the abdominal wall may experience a slight pain in the navel.

What to do?

The protruding belly button is usually painless. But if you feel irritation in the belly button when it is rubbed against the clothes, you can use a belly button cover or a tummy sleeve to cover it.

2. Indigestion

Indigestion is one of the most common symptoms that every pregnant woman experiences. Though the second trimester might have kept you fresh and active, you might feel that indigestion is popping up again in your 20th week of pregnancy. The primary cause of indigestion is the increase in pregnancy hormones in the body. The increasing hormones relax the valve at the entrance of the stomach. This makes it easy for the acids in the stomach to travel up the esophagus, thus causing indigestion.

What to do?

If you are well aware of the foods that cause indigestion, it is better to avoid them. Eat more fibrous and nutritious food and avoid spicy and junk food. Ensure to drink plenty of water to keep yourself well hydrated.

3. Changes in Nails

If you are a person who loves growing nails, this will come as pleasant news to you. It is surprising to learn that the increasing pregnancy hormones could make your nails grow faster and more robust. On the flip side, the hormones also make your strong nails split and break often. 

What to do?

You just need to remember that the changes in your nails are not permanent. If you are experiencing frequent splitting in nails, ensure you trim and maintain them well. Avoid using nail polish, as the chemicals could harm the nails.

4. Thrombosis

Thrombosis, also known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), is a condition where blood clots are found in the body’s deep veins. The most commonly affected area is the legs. This symptom is not very common during pregnancy. However, pregnant women are at risk of developing thrombosis at any stage of pregnancy.

During week 20, halfway through the pregnancy, women must be very cautious about the symptoms. Identifying the symptoms is the most important and complicated part of the condition. There are no specific symptoms associated with the condition other than swelling. Swelling is a common condition during pregnancy.

However, if you find any of the following symptoms during pregnancy, consult your doctor as soon as possible:

  • If you find swelling or tenderness in only one leg, the node worsens when you walk.
  • Warm Skin or acute pain in the swollen area
  • The skin turns red on the backside of your leg below your knee.

While swelling is the only criterion with which we can suspect DVT, it does not guarantee that you have the condition if you have swelling.

What to do?

Always stay active and practice walking. If you find any of the symptoms, consult your doctor immediately. You will be given an injection to stop the blood clot from growing. The medicines usually do not affect the baby. You might be asked to take the injection for the rest of your pregnancy until six weeks post-delivery.

Other Symptoms

The following are a few other symptoms you might have experienced in your previous weeks. They continue to follow you to week 20 of pregnancy.

1. Dizziness

The increasing pregnancy hormones could make you feel dizzy at times. It is widespread during pregnancy, and there is nothing to panic about.

What to do?

Keep yourself well-hydrated. Keep moving around throughout the day. Avoid sitting or standing in the same position for a longer period of time. If you feel much discomfort, talk to your doctor about the dizziness.

2. Occasional Headache

As the hormones change rapidly, it could cause occasional headaches. It is usually normal and not very painful. 

What to do?

Drink plenty of water and breathe in the fresh air. If you have a consistent headache, talk to your doctor about it.

3. Swelling / Water Retention

Swelling or water retention in the body is a common phenomenon during pregnancy. The body produces excess fluid to support your little one. These extra fluids are stored in various parts of the body.

What to do?

This is very common and will disappear after delivery. Avoid being in the same position for a longer period of time. A warm water massage could help it.

4. Leg Cramps

Leg cramps are very common during pregnancy. While there is no evident reason about what causes the leg cramps, pregnancy hormones are believed to be the cause.

What to do?

You can follow any of the following tips to relieve the pain – Try to be active and do simple exercises. Stretch and relax the muscles or else apply a warm massage on the affected area

5. Thicker / Better Hair Growth

Pregnancy hormones can make your hair grow stronger and faster. Some women may find hair growth in unnecessary areas, including their abdomen and face. Remember that these changes are not permanent. You might notice that the grown hair falls out quickly in the postpartum period.

What to do?

There is nothing that you can do about it. Try to keep your hair clean and free from dirt. 

6. Mood Swings

Mood swings are prevalent during pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones are the primary reason for unstable mood.

What to do?

You cannot control your emotions. Try to eat healthy food and food that gives you a calming effect. Talk to the people around you, make them understand what you are going through, and seek their help.

7. Clumsiness

You might no longer be the person who keeps the place neat. You might often find that you need to be more clumsy. There is nothing to be ashamed of. Clumsiness is very common during pregnancy.

What to do?

Take the help of people around you to keep the place neat and clean.

8. Constipation

Constipation is one old symptom that might follow you until the end of pregnancy. Your pregnancy hormone is the sole cause.

What to do?

Drink plenty of water and eat fibrous food for easy digestion. Also, avoid spicy and junk food.

9. Pregnancy Brain / Forgetfulness

During pregnancy, you might be very forgetful. It is a common phenomenon, and you’ll return to normal after delivery.

What to do?

Don’t worry much about your forgetfulness; take the help of people around you to remind you about important tasks.

You are halfway through your pregnancy. You have 20 more weeks to hold your little one in your hands. The kind of symptoms that your body has undergone so far have made you stronger physically and mentally. Your body is making you ready for the delivery. You must understand what is happening in your body.

Happy Pregnancy! 

Read Also: How Does Your Body Change During Week 21 of Pregnancy?

Gayathri Lakshminarayanan,CA, B.Com

Gayathri’s passion for writing had its foundation at the very early stages of her life when she was on her college editorial board and also won several awards for writing events and book review competitions. She combines her corporate experience with her writing skills and her experience as a homemaker makes her an empathetic contributor in the parenting domain . Her shift from full-time accounting professional to a homemaker gave her career a new direction.Read more.

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