illustration of developing human baby at 24 weeks

24 weeks pregnant

For more information about week 24 in a twin or multiple pregnancy, tap here.

Your baby’s lungs are developing in some major ways this week and preparing for life outside of the womb. You’re now more than halfway to your due date, so those sweet baby breaths are right around the corner!

How’s Baby?

By the end of this week, Baby is probably about 12.5-13 inches long, the size of an eggplant, and weighs 1.5 lbs!

Baby is starting to develop taste buds, which means that before too long, your little one will be able to taste some of the stronger flavors of the things you eat through the amniotic fluid they still swallow regularly. According to various studies, this could impact their food preferences later in life. You’re already getting Baby used to your favorite family meals, and it might mean you’ll have an easier time introducing your toddler to new dishes in less than a year.

Baby’s lungs are developing significantly after all of the practice breathing they’ve been doing. They’re now making cells that will produce surfactant, a material that will help them breathe and get the oxygen they need once they’re born. Surfactant is a liquid that helps keep the tiny air sacs in the lungs, the alveoli, from sticking together and collapsing when a baby breathes air.

Your growing baby gained about a quarter of a pound last week (110 g) in bones, muscle, and fat, so they’re finally beginning to really fill out. Even though Baby’s eyebrows, lashes, and hair are coming in, they still lack pigment and appear white. Your little one’s skin is beginning to glow a bit pinker now, due to the appearance of tiny blood vessels called capillaries. And their ears and fingernails are also fully formed now.

What’s new with you?

Between the linea nigra, stretch marks, and an itchy belly, your skin might be driving you nuts this week. Topical creams meant for stretch marks or dry skin may help reduce the itchiness. Check with your provider about the best and safest options for you. Using unscented, mild lotions and soaps can help, too, as can avoiding baths and showers that are too hot, which can dry out your skin.

Sometime in the next couple of weeks, you’ll likely take or retake a glucose challenge test (GCT) to screen for gestational diabetes. This is a really important test because the complications of gestational diabetes can be serious for you and Baby, and even people with no risk factors can end up with it. It’s a simple test to take and requires no preparation beforehand. Just drink your small special beverage and have your blood drawn an hour later.

Your ankles and fingers might be swollen due in part to fluid retention and the pressure of your growing uterus on your veins. For relief, try elevating your feet or soaking the swollen areas to alleviate some of the pain. Stretching and gentle massage can also feel great! Sudden and severe swelling over the course of a few days can be a sign of something more serious. Sometimes, these symptoms — swelling, headaches, and vision changes — can be serious for you and your baby. So, if you experience any of these symptoms, be sure to tell your healthcare provider right away. They can help you determine if you’re dealing with normal symptoms or something more serious.

Reviewed by the Ovia Health Clinical Team

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