Pregnancy Week 16
Now your tiny human can hear muffled noises, they will be getting used to familiar voices and sounds from the world around them. Talking to your bump can help you bond with your baby and can be soothing for them too.
You might feel a little self-conscious at first but don’t worry about what to say, your little one just wants to hear your voice. You could also try reading stories to your bump or singing some songs. A study of 120 women found that singing during pregnancy can help your baby to be calm and content following delivery.
Your baby is around 11.6cm long and weighs around 100g – a similar size to an avocado. They will be starting to make different facial expressions, although these smiles, frowns and funny faces are not deliberate as your little one doesn’t have control of these muscles yet.
They will also be able to move their arms and legs and form fists with their hands – this marks the start of lots of kicking and punching in your womb. You won’t be able to feel this properly yet but you might be starting to feel some little flutters coming from your little one.
You might not realise these sensations are your baby at first as they will be very subtle but don’t worry, there won’t be any room for confusion when your baby gets bigger.
What is happening with me at 16 weeks?
At 16 weeks, you will usually have an appointment with your midwife. This will be shorter than the first time you saw her but is a valuable opportunity to ask any questions you might have about your pregnancy.
Your midwife will check your blood pressure, urine and pulse and you will be given the results of the blood tests which were carried out at your first appointment. You will have been tested for three infectious diseases – HIV, syphilis and hepatitis B and if any of these have been detected, you will be given information about how to stay healthy and protect yourself and your baby.
You’ll also be given details about your next ultrasound scan at around 20 weeks, known as the anomaly scan. You may get a chance to hear your baby’s heartbeat at this appointment too.
Most of your early pregnancy symptoms will hopefully have passed by now but you may be feeling a little constipated. When you struggle to pass a bowel movement, this can make you feel bloated and you might even have stomach cramps or feel nauseous.
Staying active, eating high-fibre foods and drinking plenty of water will help. Avoid taking iron supplements unless you’ve been told to take them by a midwife or doctor as they can make constipation worse.