It’s your second trimester and you’re feeling good!
When I was expecting my first baby, I remember counting the days until my second trimester. I was plagued with extreme morning sickness and fatigue week after week during my first trimester. Thankfully, I was not one of the unlucky women who are sick for their entire pregnancy. When I hit that 13-week mark I felt better almost instantly. Other exciting milestones for me in the 2nd trimester were showing off my growing baby bump and finding out that we were having a boy!
Here’s what you can expect at your second trimester OB visits at Mankato Clinic
Most women feel their best during their second trimester – weeks 13-27. Your nausea should ease, your energy should return and your anxiety about miscarriage should lessen. Best of all, you may have a cute little baby bump!
Your second-trimester appointments should be scheduled every four weeks until you are 28 weeks pregnant. These appointments will be shorter than your first visit, but there will be some tests and procedures during this period.
At each appointment, your Mankato Clinic provider will weigh you, check your blood pressure, listen to the baby’s heartbeat and measure the growth of your uterus and baby. Hearing your baby’s heartbeat is very reassuring. You will also bring in a urine sample to be tested for proteins and sugar. High levels of sugar can point to gestational diabetes.
Between 16 and 18 weeks, Mankato Clinic obstetricians offer the Quad Screen test. This screening is a simple blood draw that looks for four specific hormones and proteins. The screening calculates the mother’s risk of carrying a baby with a genetic disorder such as spina bifida or Down syndrome. Abnormal test results require additional testing to make a diagnosis. This decision is up to you and your partner. Testing may include a high definition ultrasound or amniocentesis.
Between 16 and 25 weeks, you may feel the flutters and kicks of your little one! One of the most exciting appointments is your fetal survey ultrasound which occurs at 20 weeks. This ultrasound can sometimes reveal the gender of your baby! The main focus of ultrasounds is to see that your baby is healthy. Your provider can see your amniotic sac, placenta and cord which support your baby’s growth and development.
Near the end of your second trimester, it’s time for the gestational diabetes test. No preparation is required, but you will come to the office and drink a sugary solution and one hour later, a blood sample will be taken to measure your sugar level. If your blood sugar is high, you will need to return for a glucose tolerance test, which is similar but takes about three hours. To diagnose gestational diabetes, both tests must show high blood sugar.
Your second trimester is also a time to prepare for labor, delivery and your newborn’s arrival. At Mankato Clinic, you can begin taking the Prepared Childbirth, Newborn Care, Breastfeeding and Car Seat Safety classes. Mankato Clinic also offers a one-session Childbirth Express class, which is a perfect refresher for moms who are new patients or have older children.
We also recommend choosing your baby’s provider during this time. At Mankato Clinic, we have pediatric providers who specialize in the care of infants and children. They see patients at the Children’s Health Center in Mankato and Daniels Health Center in St. Peter. You also may choose a family medicine provider who can care for your infant, children and you. Our family medicine providers are in all of our clinic locations. Providers will visit the childbirth classes so you can meet them and ask them questions.
The second trimester is busy, but don’t let it overwhelm you. Just try to make all your prenatal visits and carry on! If there are any concerns between visits, patients can call the Mankato Clinic OB office. We are here for you.