Week-by-week guide to pregnancy

group of pregnant women
When you're pregnant, you have lots of questions. Our week-by-week pregnancy guide is packed with lots of useful information. From what's happening inside your body, to how your baby is developing, and tips and advice on having a healthy pregnancy – this is your one-stop pregnancy guide!

2nd trimester

Our week-by-week pregnancy guide is full of essential information. From staying fit in pregnancy to advice on your maternity rights, you'll find it all here.

Week 19 – your 2nd trimester

What's happening in my body?

You might think that bubbling feeling in your tummy is wind, but it could be your baby moving. You'll soon be able to recognise their movements.

It's great for you and baby to stay active, but some exercises, such as running, could become uncomfortable. This is because the hormone "relaxin" loosens up your ligaments, leaving your back, knees and ankles without their usual support.

Tips for better sleep

Not getting enough sleep in pregnancy can be very frustrating, you could try these tips for better sleep:

  • practise beditation – a mixture of meditation and gentle stretches designed to help you drift off
  • sleep on your side
  • use pillows to support your bump and any aching muscles
  • try sleeping with a pillow between your knees

The NHS website has remedies for sleep problems during pregnancy.

2nd trimester pregnancy symptoms (at 19 weeks)

Are you worried about anything? Trust your instincts and share any worries with your health professional. Watch a video from Tommy's about how to speak up in pregnancy.

Your signs of pregnancy this week could include:

You may also experience symptoms from earlier weeks, such as:

What does my baby look like?

Your baby, or foetus, is around 15.3cm long from head to bottom, and weighs around 240g. That's approximately the size of a beef tomato and weight of 2 salmon fillets.

Their adult teeth are starting to grow, and they are lining up behind the first set. Your baby's putting on weight, getting ready for the birth in about 21 weeks' time.

Action stations

You might still be thinking about where to give birth. There's plenty of time to think it over. Find out your local options for maternity services.

Read about your options on where to give birth. It's important to find somewhere that meets your needs and makes you feel supported.

You do not have to tell your employer for several more weeks, but as soon as you do, you will have maternity rights. You can attend antenatal appointments during paid work time.

You can also ask for a risk assessment of your work place. If you want to wait, the latest you can leave it is 15 weeks before the baby is due, which is around week 25.

It's a good time to tone up your pelvic floor muscles. Gentle exercises can help to prevent leakage when you laugh, sneeze or cough. Get the muscles going by pretending that you're having a wee and then stopping midflow. Visit Tommy's for more ideas about pelvic floor exercises.

Ask your midwife or doctor about online antenatal classes – they may be able to recommend one. The charity Tommy's has lots of useful information on antenatal classes and preparing you for birth.

Even if you've had children before, they're still worth going to as you can meet other parents-to-be. The NCT offers online antenatal classes with small groups of people that live locally to you.

Do your best to stop smoking, give up alcohol and go easy on the tea, coffee and anything else with caffeine. Ask your midwife or GP for support if you need it.

To keep bones and muscles healthy, we need vitamin D. From late March/early April to the end of September, most people make enough vitamin D from sunlight on their skin. However, between October and early March, you should consider taking a daily vitamin D supplement because we cannot make enough from sunlight.

Some people should take a vitamin D supplement all year round, find out if this applies to you on the NHS website. You just need 10 micrograms (it's the same for grown-ups and kids). Check if you're entitled to free vitamins.

It's recommended that you do 150 minutes of exercise a week while pregnant. You could start off with just 10 minutes of daily exercise - perhaps take a brisk walk outside. Check out Sport England's #StayInWorkOut online exercises (scroll to the pregnancy section). Listen to your body and do what feels right for you.

There's no need to eat for 2. You don't need any extra calories until the third trimester, which starts in week 28. Try to eat healthily, with plenty of fresh fruit and veg, and avoid processed, fatty and salty foods. You may be able to get free milk, fruit and veg through the Healthy Start scheme.

You and your family should follow the government and NHS guidance on coronavirus (COVID-19):

  • read government guidance on how to stay safe from COVID-19
  • get NHS advice about COVID-19
  • use the NHS COVID-19 app for England and Wales – it's the fastest way of knowing when you've been exposed to COVID-19
  • To find out about about COVID-19 and pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding, have a look at advice on the:

  • NHS website
  • Breastfeeding Network
  • World Health Organization
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