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Pregnancy Week 20

Pregnancy Week 20: Your Baby’s Growth and Development

Pregnancy week 20 marks the beginning of the third trimester, a time of significant growth and development for your baby. Your little one is now about the size of a banana, measuring approximately 10.5 inches (26.7 centimeters) from crown to rump and weighing around 12 ounces (340 grams).

Your Baby’s Physical Development

  • Face and features: Your baby’s facial features are becoming more defined, with distinct eyes, nose, and mouth. Eyebrows and eyelashes are also starting to appear.
  • Hair: Fine, downy hair called lanugo covers your baby’s body, providing insulation and protection.
  • Skin: Your baby’s skin is still thin and wrinkled, but it is gradually thickening and developing layers of fat.
  • Limbs: Your baby’s arms and legs are becoming longer and more proportional. Fingernails and toenails are also starting to grow.
  • Organs: All of your baby’s major organs are now fully formed and functioning. The lungs are beginning to produce surfactant, a substance that helps them expand and contract with breathing.

Your Baby’s Neurological Development

  • Brain growth: Your baby’s brain is rapidly growing and developing, with new neural connections forming every day.
  • Sensory development: Your baby can now hear sounds from outside the womb, such as your voice and music. They can also taste and smell.
  • Reflexes: Your baby has developed a number of reflexes, including the grasp reflex, the rooting reflex, and the Moro reflex.

Your Baby’s Movements

Your baby is now very active in the womb, and you may feel them kicking, punching, and rolling. These movements are a sign of your baby’s well-being and are a great way to bond with them.

Your Body Changes

  • Uterus: Your uterus is now about the size of a cantaloupe and is continuing to grow rapidly.
  • Abdomen: Your abdomen is becoming more rounded and prominent.
  • Breasts: Your breasts are preparing for breastfeeding, and you may notice increased tenderness and swelling.
  • Weight gain: You may gain about 1 pound (0.45 kilograms) per week during the third trimester.
  • Other changes: You may experience increased urination, constipation, and heartburn.

Prenatal Care

  • Regular checkups: Continue to see your healthcare provider for regular prenatal checkups. These appointments will include monitoring your baby’s growth and development, checking your blood pressure, and discussing any concerns you may have.
  • Ultrasound: Your healthcare provider may recommend an ultrasound around week 20 to check your baby’s anatomy and growth.
  • Glucose tolerance test: This test checks for gestational diabetes, a condition that can develop during pregnancy.
  • Iron supplements: You may need to take iron supplements to prevent anemia, which can occur during pregnancy.

Lifestyle Considerations

  • Nutrition: Eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  • Exercise: Continue to exercise regularly, but avoid strenuous activities or contact sports.
  • Sleep: Get plenty of rest and sleep on your left side to improve circulation.
  • Hydration: Stay well-hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids.
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking: These substances can harm your baby.

Emotional Changes

  • Mood swings: It is common to experience mood swings during pregnancy due to hormonal changes.
  • Anxiety: You may feel anxious about the upcoming birth or other aspects of pregnancy.
  • Nesting: You may have a strong urge to prepare for your baby’s arrival by cleaning, organizing, and nesting.

Tips for Week 20

  • Talk to your baby and sing to them. They can hear you now!
  • Take time to relax and enjoy this special time.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your partner, family, or friends.
  • If you have any concerns or questions, don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare provider.


Pregnancy week 20 is a time of significant growth and development for your baby. Your little one is now about the size of a banana and is becoming more active and responsive. Continue to take care of yourself and your baby by eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and getting plenty of rest. Enjoy this special time and prepare for the exciting journey ahead.

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