21 Weeks Pregnant – what to expect

Now you're 21 weeks pregnant, this week is all about itchy skin, pregnancy swelling, gender reveal parties and sweet potato soup!

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Watch our video to see what your baby looks like this week

Your baby’s regularly gulping little bits of amniotic fluid (proper swallowing practice) and that fluid’s providing a little taste of what you’re eating. Movements are less jerky now; more graceful even – although they may not feel very balletic to you!

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And here’s a 3D scan of a 21 week baby…

So what’s happening to your body this week?

Well, it’s turning into the itchy and scratchy show round yours, isn’t it? Especially at night. Over 1 in 4 of us get the itch in mid to late-pregnancy, as our skin starts stretching and tightening over our swelling belly and breasts – and drives us crazy with the urge to scratch.

Mostly, it’s just damn irritating (in all senses) but if it’s unbearably severe (especially later on in your pregnancy) or is mainly on your hands and feet, do get your doctor to check you out.

Otherwise, make moisturising friends with a tub of aqueous cream and calamine, and do a kind of Cleopatra by putting oatmeal in your bath – it turns your bath water all soft and milky white.

Our MFMer’s 21-week bump of the week

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Has your bump got noticeably bigger this week? Check out other MFMers’ belfies in our 21 week bump gallery.

Did you know? Your baby’s now the length of… a strand of spaghetti

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From week 20, your baby will be measured from crown to heel and not crown to rump as before. So by this measure, your little noodle will be 25.6cm long.

And around the weight of… a courgette

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Your baby now weighs around 11oz (312g)!

4 things you might need to know this week

MFMer’s tip of the week from our forum

“If your back or hips are hurting, buy a birthing ball now. They are fantastic to sit on and they take the pressure off you spine & pelvis. I sat on one for most of the second half of my pregnancy” – Tinkerbell121

Want to share your pregnancy with others going through the same as you? There’s a birth club for your due date – take a look

Got a pregnancy pillow yet?

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It’s amazing what relief a humble pillow can bring. With nearly 4 out of 5 pregnant women saying they have problems sleeping well, it’s great when there’s a possible solution.

The pregnancy pillow isn’t for everyone, but lots of our MFM mums say they wouldn’t sleep without one. And many preg pillows convert into breastfeeding and baby support pillows, so the stuffing keeps going.

Our preg recipe for week 21 – Sweet potato and lentil soup

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Why sweet potato is great for your growing baby

Sweet potatoes are full of beta-carotene, an orangey pigment that your body converts into vitamin A – and needs throughout pregnancy for the healthy development of your baby’s eyes, skin, bones and organs.

Like its distant cousin the (white) potato, the sweet potato is a great source of fibre and carb energy, feeding your hunger without maxing out on the calories – that eating for two thing is a myth, dammit!

See the full recipe and get cooking…

Baby namer – what do you think of these names inspired by places in the world?

Did you conceive somewhere exotic? Or perhaps you’re looking for a name that evokes a sense of wanderlust, sophistication or adventure?

India
Named after the Asian country, India conjures up images of long summers and serene temples – perfect for a born adventurer.
Celeb baby-name-check: Chris Hemsworth’s first daughter is named India.

Brooklyn
Forget Manhattan, Brooklyn is the coolest borough in New York. Think hipsters sipping flat whites through their lavish beards.
Celeb baby-name-check: David Beckham named his first son Brooklyn.

Check out our dedicated Baby Names section for more inspiration.

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So that’s plenty for this week, want to take a peek at what lies ahead – or look back at last week?

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