Updated: Sep 24, 2020
The second trimester of my pregnancy has flown by so quickly! It seems like just yesterday that I was rejoicing over having made it through the first trimester, which was full of nausea and exhaustion.
I've found it really is true (at least in my case) that the second trimester of pregnancy is the "honeymoon period." I have greatly enjoyed this middle chunk of pregnancy. Every week, just the thought of my baby growing bigger and bigger, getting ready to make her big debut, makes me so excited! And being able to feel her move is pretty amazing, too.
Read on to find out what my second trimester symptoms, medical visits, and weight gain have been like! You might find yours to be similar.
If you want to get caught up on my first trimester symptoms, medical visits, and bump progress, as well as how I've been making the most of my pregnancy during a global pandemic, check out these posts first:
Second Trimester Symptoms
While I have really enjoyed this trimester overall, I have had quite a few new and interesting symptoms. I'll start with the good ones, then move to the bad and the ugly.
Check out this helpful list of Second Trimester Must Haves to help you through these pregnancy symptoms: https://www.faith-hope-motherhood.com/post/top-7-second-trimester-must-haves
Feeling Baby's Movements
The best part of the second trimester of pregnancy for me, by far, has been feeling my sweet baby move! I first felt the smallest flutters of movement around 15 weeks gestation. In those early days, I remember feeling a sensation similar to the butterflies you feel in your stomach when starting to descend down the steepest drop of a rollercoaster. Different than I had imagined it would feel, but wonderful!
A couple weeks later, I started feeling gentle nudges from baby, and a few weeks after that I felt full on kicks and jabs! These types of movements have only grown in frequency and intensity. My baby loves to be active whenever she can!
Feeling her move has helped me to feel even more bonded to her, like I'm getting to see a little bit of her personality by how and when she moves around. My husband has even been able to feel her moving from outside my stomach, so he can feel more bonded to her, as well.
A Pregnancy Tumor
At the beginning of my second trimester, around 14 weeks, I noticed a little white sack forming on my gums towards the back of my mouth. I thought it would just go away on its own, but unfortunately it didn't...
I started having pain in my gums and jaw, so I called my dentist. She decided that I must have a gum infection and prescribed antibiotics (cleared by my midwife). This seemed so strange to me, since I take really good care of my oral hygiene and never had any kind of infection in my mouth before. I took the 10 days of antibiotics and still... the little sack in my mouth remained.
I ended up going into my dentist's office a few days later for x-rays and an examination of the weird growth on my gums. The strangest thing about it was that it kept growing bigger and bigger at a pretty rapid rate. I was getting concerned that this wasn't normal.
My dentist took x-rays, which turned out looking fine. But the growth on my gums concerned her. She sent me to an oral surgeon immediately for examination and possibly removal of this thing. She had no idea what it was, but thought I may even need a biopsy done on it. I was terrified...
Thankfully, the oral surgeon knew what this thing was right away! He reassured me that it was just a "pregnancy tumor." I know, the word tumor sounds pretty freaky, but it actually isn't cancerous or dangerous at all. Apparently about 5% of pregnant women experience these gum growths, and they can get quite large! They tend to disappear after delivery, so I just have to deal with it a for few more months and then it should take care of itself. Phew!
Since then, I have had my pregnancy tumor hanging out in my mouth to this day (end of my second trimester). I've found that with regular brushing and flossing, as well as using a strong mouthwash a few times a day, the pregnancy tumor has stopped growing and doesn't hurt anymore. It's kind of annoying, and I have to be careful when chewing not to irritate it. But all that aside, I'm happy to know that this second trimester symptom is totally normal for some women (just that special 5% like me).
I've been pretty blessed throughout my pregnancy so far to not have too many aches and pains. The one that I have noticed, however, has been hip soreness. Whether I get a lot of activity in a given day, or don't move around too much at all, my hips ache at the end of the day.
My guess is that this is due to my hips and surrounding ligaments stretching out, preparing for baby's arrival. Taking warm baths helps a lot, and so does prioritizing rest.
I've heard that a lot of heartburn during pregnancy means baby will have a lot of hair. If that's true, then this baby girl will have tons of hair!
I have heartburn daily, especially after meals and at bedtime. I take Tums to help with it, and prop my head up with more pillows at night when needed. It's manageable, but can make it difficult to eat as much as I'd like to some days.
Slight Nausea (Occasionally)
I am so grateful that the intense nausea I felt in the first trimester of my pregnancy has subsided! The slight waves of nausea I occasionally feel now are nothing compared to that. But sometimes, I do still get a little streak of nausea or car sickness here and there.
As my belly has begun stretching more and more to make room for baby, the skin on my stomach has been very itchy, especially right around my belly button. I put lotion on it whenever I think of it, and that helps somewhat with the itchy, dry skin.
Braxton Hicks Contractions
Starting at around 20 weeks, I have been experiencing Braxton Hicks contractions. They feel like an intense tightening sensation that lasts for a minute or so, and then releases.
Sometimes, I have them every day for a stretch, and then I won't have them again for weeks. I even had one that lasted much longer, about 15 minutes. I called my midwife about it, but she said there's nothing to worry about unless I have four or more in one hour. I've never even come close to that, so I'm not too worried. Braxton Hicks contractions are completely normal for many pregnant women, starting at about the halfway point.
The first medical visit of my second trimester was a regular prenatal visit at 15 weeks. I saw one of the midwives at my hospital that I've chosen for my prenatal care and delivery. She took my weight, blood pressure, and listened to baby's heartbeat with a doppler. While her heartbeat had been in the 170s at my 11-week appointment, by my 15-week appointment it was around 140. I asked my midwife a few questions about what to expect at upcoming appointments, and then scheduled my 20-week ultrasound.
Five weeks later, I had my 20-week anatomy scan (or ultrasound, same thing). It was so exciting to get to see our little baby, and find out that she's a girl! My husband was even allowed in this time, a special treat since he hasn't been allowed to come to most of my other prenatal appointments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here to read about the 20 things I didn't expect at my 20-week ultrasound: https://www.faith-hope-motherhood.com/post/20-things-i-didn-t-expect-at-my-20-week-ultrasound
My next prenatal appointment is scheduled for 28 weeks, at the start of my third trimester. I would have normally had an appointment at 24 weeks, too, but my hospital has been spreading out prenatal appointments more to prevent unnecessary trips to the hospital. SInce I'm low-risk and healthy, I had no real reason to need a 24-week appointment anyway. Still, it has seemed like a long stretch between my 20-week ultrasound and my next prenatal visit! Feeling baby's movements get stronger and stronger in the later part of my second trimester, however, has given me reassurance that everything is going along just fine.
So far, I've gained about 20 pounds since the start of my pregnancy. My little bump has been growing steadily! I've finally had strangers start to notice my belly and ask when I'm due. It's kind of a strange phenomenon for me to draw the attention of people I don't even know, simply because I'm expecting. But a baby is a pretty big and exciting deal!
Two trimesters down - only one more to go!
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