17 Weeks Pregnant: Understanding Your Baby’s Development

Fact Checked Medically reviewed by Tanja Premru-Sršen


At 17 weeks pregnant, your baby is getting bigger, gaining muscle, and putting on some fat. Meanwhile, the mom-to-be is probably noticing some symptoms reflecting the changes going on on the inside.

At 17 weeks pregnant, you are four months and one week pregnant, which means there are 23 more weeks to go until the baby arrives. Here is what you can expect during week seventeen of your pregnancy.

Physical Pregnancy Symptoms During Seventeenth Pregnancy Week

Week seventeen will bring a lot of new symptoms, while the symptoms from the weeks before are still very likely to stick around still.

Some of the most common second-trimester pregnancy symptoms you can expect during week seventeen of your pregnancy are going to include:


In your seventeenth pregnancy week, you will likely feel a little lightheaded or like the room is spinning. Dizziness is a common symptom during the second trimester.

Experts agree that it happens due to a higher heart rate, temporary changes in circulation, and bigger blood vessels to accommodate an increased blood flow, which is normal during pregnancy.

Vision changes

During week seventeen of your pregnancy, you might notice that your eyes are drier and your vision seems blurrier, given that vision changes are common during pregnancy, and many pregnant women deal with them during the second trimester.

Pregnancy hormones, changes in metabolism, excessive fluid retention, and blood circulation changes can all affect your eyes and eyesight.

Itchy skin

Mild itching and the appearance of stretch marks is an issue for many pregnant during with, especially around the breasts and belly areas, where the skin is stretching a lot to accommodate the baby and pregnancy. Pregnancy can cause eczema to worsen, also making for itchiness.

Weird dreams

You might experience strange streams, vivid dreams, sex dreams, and nightmares thanks to hormones and intense emotions that are coming over you during pregnancy.

Baby’s Development During Week Seventeen of Pregnancy?

At seventeen weeks pregnant, your baby measures are eight inches long and around 6.4 ounces, about the size of a turnip. AT this point, the baby’s development is very considerable, and your baby is getting bigger by the day.

Between weeks 16 and 22 of your pregnancy, your baby will become able to hear sounds inside your body, which means it is the perfect time to start speaking and signing to it for the purposes of creating a bond and connecting.

The baby’s skeleton is becoming bone instead of soft cartilage, which it was before week seventeen.

The umbilical cord, which delivers nutrients to your baby and ferries away waste products, grows stronger and thicker. It will be approximately nine inches long by the end of your pregnancy.

All over the baby’s body, the sweat glands are starting to develop. By the end of week eighteen, the layers of your baby’s skin will be fully formed.

Pregnancy Checklist During Week Seventeen

Some important items you need to check off your pregnancy to-do list during the week seventeen are going to include:

  • Learning how to fasten the seatbelt over the pregnant belly
    Wearing your seatbelt is always important, but it is extra important during pregnancy. Once your belly starts showing and you are experiencing some healthy weight gain, you need to learn how to properly secure the seatbelt over your growing uterus and growing baby in your belly. To do so, secure the lap portion under your baby bump and snug across your hip bones, and position the shoulder harness off to the side of your belly and snugly between your breasts.
  • Trying some relaxation techniques
    Pregnancy can be stressful, especially if you have trouble falling and staying asleep. Trying new relaxation techniques, such as guided imagery, deep breathing, prenatal yoga, and prenatal massage, can help you feel better and more relaxed. And they will help once the baby comes.
  • Taking maternity pictures
    The perfect time to take maternity photos is during the second semester, given that you have that pregnancy glow and a baby bump that is not too big to move around. You can hire a professional photographer and have an all-out photoshoot, but you can also have a fun day with your friend or partner by taking photos in your living room or backyard.
  • Wearing sunscreen everywhere you go
    Yes, even on a gloomy day, you should wear sunscreen on every surface that the sun touches. Changes in skin pigmentation during pregnancy are widespread, but they can be avoided by wearing sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher, as well as a hat.

What To Avoid or Begin to Avoid?

Being pregnant means staying away from harmful things and activities to protect you and the baby inside of you. During week seventeen, make sure to stay away from:

  • Smoking, drinking alcohol, drugs, and being exposed to toxic substances.
  • Drinking an excessive amount of caffeine and carbonated drinks.
  • Getting tattooed as it poses a risk of infection.
  • Performing physically demanding workouts and carrying heavyweight.
  • Touching kitty litter or cat feces.
  • Eating junk food, deli meats, raw or undercooked meat, fish, chicken, eggs, cheeses from unpasteurized milk, unpasteurized dairy foods, high mercury fish, and unwashed fruits and vegetables.
  • Having close contact with anyone with rubella, chickenpox, or the Zika virus.