What to expect in the second trimester of pregnancy

The second trimester. What’s happening now? Learn here.

By: Kristin Gray, MD .

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For many expectant mothers, the second trimester is the easiest three months of their pregnancy. Typically, morning sickness and fatigue begins to fade, allowing mothers to feel more like themselves.

And with less nausea, you may start to notice more weight gain. During this time, you only need about an extra 300 to 500 calories each day, and should be gaining about ½ to 1 pound each week. If you are overweight before pregnancy, even less weight gain is recommended.

You will also begin to feel your baby’s movements more, and your baby will begin to grow more quickly. During this time, your doctor will perform an ultrasound to see how your baby is progressing, and you can also learn the sex of your baby at this time.

Some common symptoms you may experience during this time include:

  • Backaches from baby growth and increased weight. Back supports, warm bath and massage can be beneficial.
  • Breast enlargement. Your breast tissue will continue to grow and you may need to increase your bra size to feel more comfortable.
  • Vaginal discharge. Thin, white discharge is normal. If it is foul-smelling, green or yellowish or causes itching or pain, you should call your doctor.
  • Heartburn and constipation. This is caused by increased progesterone leading to muscle relaxation.
  • To relieve heartburn, eat smaller meals, and track food to see if anything is making it worse. Tums are also OK to take. Talk to your doctor about medications if you still can’t find relief.
  • For constipation, increase your hydration and fiber in your diet. Stool softeners may be needed.
  • Bladder and kidney infections. Progesterone can also cause changes in your bladder that make you more susceptible to a urinary tract infection (UTI).
  • Call your doctor’s office if you have pain when you urinate, odor to your urine, fever, chills or backache.
  • If untreated, bladder infections can lead to kidney infections that might require hospitalization and can increase your risk of pregnancy complications.

If you have any signs or symptoms that concern you, even if they seem silly, make sure to talk with your health care provider.