20 weeks pregnant: Pregnancy tips and nutrition
At a glance
Sit down or relax to feel your baby’s movements more clearly
Book a dentist appointment to get your gums checked
Try alcohol-free mouthwash to keep plaque at bay
Be careful when handling the cat to avoid transmitting diseases to your baby
Baby's development at 20 weeks
Baby is growing really quickly, especially when it comes to brain development. That little body has finally started growing into that oversized head.
The pancreas is starting to produce insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. Insulin also allows your little one to use sugar and fat for growth, and to stockpile it under the skin for birth. Clever little clogs.
Plus, if you’re having a girl, her ovaries are already equipped with enough primitive cells to produce 6 million eggs.
Have you felt your little one move yet? What a magical moment. To feel the movements more clearly, lie or sit down and relax. When you move around, you are actually rocking baby back to sleep. Most babies have their most active phase in the evening between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m, as they’re still sleeping for up to 20 hours a day.
You’ll need a bit of patience to be able to detect these movements correctly.
At the beginning, you’ll probably only feel a gentle twitching. Kicks against your tummy will only become really clear from the 25th week. And it will be several weeks before Dad can also experience this beautiful moment.
This week is all about your teeth. Pregnant women are at increased risk of periodontal disease, due to an increased level of progesterone. Gums can become swollen and bleed, and your teeth are more likely to be attacked by plaque too.
But don’t worry; here’s a few tips to keep your teeth and gums healthy throughout your pregnancy. Regular examinations are a great way to keep your gums in good shape.
Mouthwash is great for fighting plaque, just make sure it doesn’t contain alcohol. Also, make sure you tell your dentist the names and dosages of all medications you are taking, including vitamins such as folic acid, as this may change your treatment plan.
If you're pregnant, it's important to take measures to avoid toxoplasmosis infection by:
- not emptying cat litter trays – if you can't get somebody else to do it, wear disposable rubber gloves and wash your hands thoroughly afterwards
- changing your cat's litter tray daily – it should also be thoroughly cleaned every day using hot water
- washing your hands thoroughly if you come into contact with cat faeces
- wearing gloves when gardening – even if you don't have a cat – in case the soil is contaminated with cat faeces
- washing your hands and gloves thoroughly after gardening or handling soil
- washing your hands thoroughly after handling cats and avoiding close contact with sick cats
- avoiding handling or eating raw, cured or undercooked infected meat – particularly lamb or pork