Your Pregnancy: Week 19

by Wonder Years
5 years ago

week 19 exposed pregnant belly with heart shaped sticker

What’s going on?

The growth of your bump goes on overdrive mode starting this week, and this may be accompanied by some aches and pain, plus changes to your skin. On a brighter note, your baby’s movements in the womb are getting more prominent so you definitely won’t miss those kicks and punches.

Baby at Week 19

At Week 19, your baby now weighs more than your placenta. He/she will measure around 14cm long and weigh 240g – that’s about the size of a mango.

Although your baby is still on the small side, he/she will start developing fat this week, which will help to keep your little one warm and toasty after birth. More layers of fat will be added during the last trimester. 

Apart from fat layers, your little one’s outer skin layer is covered in a white protective substance called vernix caseosa (vernix is the Latin word for “varnish”; caseosa means “cheese”). Greasy and white, this “varnish” is made up of lanugo, oil from your baby’s glands and dead skin cells. Vernix protects your baby’s skin from the amniotic fluid and will gradually shed as delivery day draws near. However, some babies – especially those born prematurely – will still be covered in this substance at birth, but they too will shed soon after.

Wondering what would happen if your baby didn’t have this white, cheesy layer? Well, he/she would probably look very wrinkled at birth – much like how you would look like after soaking in a bath for nine months!

What is mum up to?

Your baby’s movements will be more recognisable now, with kicks and jabs that might take you by surprise. At times, you might even be able to spot a foot or elbow jutting out. Do include your hubby and children during this magical moment – they are sure to enjoy feeling these movements as well and is a great way to bond with baby.

On the other hand, your growing bump could bring about symptoms such as heartburn or indigestion, while the increase of hormones in your body could leave you feeling breathless at times. Additionally, you may also experience a dull ache in your lower abdomen or an occasional, stabbing pain on both sides momentarily. Known as round ligament pain, this happens because the ligaments that support your uterus are stretching to accommodate the increasing weight, and tend to occur when you shift position or when you finally sit back and rest after an active day. 

While all these are part and parcel of pregnancy, do alert your doctor if they get unbearable or severe.

Top tips for Week 19

Do pay attention when you pee, as pregnant mums tend to develop urinary tract infection (UTI). UTI occurs when bacteria build up in your bladder, and is most likely caused by hormonal changes.

Do see your doctor if you find yourself urinating more often than usual or if it is accompanied by a burning sensation. A dose of antibiotics should be able to help clear up the infection. You can also help to keep UTI away by doing the following:

  • Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day, as well as a glass of unsweetened cranberry juice
  • Stay away from refined foods, fruit juices, caffeine, alcohol and sugar
  • Take vitamin C, beta-carotene and zinc supplements to fight the infection
  • Urinate as soon as the need is felt and empty your bladder completely
  • After urinating, do wipe from front to back