23 Weeks Pregnant: Staying Active and Healthy

Fact Checked Medically reviewed by Tanja Premru-Sršen


During the twenty-third pregnancy week, your baby is about to enter a major growth spurt, which will make it almost double in size over the next month, and continue in the third trimester.

On the other hand, the mom-to-be is probably starting to deal with a “pregnancy brain,” which is used to describe the feeling of fogginess, confusion, and haziness.

Here is what you can expect during your twenty-third week of pregnancy for both you and your baby.

Physical Symptoms During Week Twenty-Three of Pregnancy

During your twenty-third pregnancy week, the most common second-trimester pregnancy symptoms, such as nasal congestion, heartburn, stretch marks, weight gain, and food cravings, will continue.

On top of those, some new symptoms might show up during week twenty-third of your pregnancy, including:


As your baby grows, it will start to stress your back muscles, and you can expect some annoying and lingering back pains, especially in your lower back. This is perfectly normal and expected at this stage of your second trimester.

Backaches are especially common for women carrying twins or multiples, as the load on the back multiplies.

If you happen to feel any sharp and strong pain, let your healthcare provider know as soon as possible since it could be cause for concern.

Swollen ankles

At twenty-three weeks pregnant, you might want to set your strappy heels and sandals aside, as you are very likely to notice your ankles and feet showing some slight swelling, especially in the heat of summer.

Changes in your blood flow that may cause some water retention and slow circulation in your legs might result in swelling, also known as edema. If you notice any sudden swelling or experience severe leg cramps, make sure to contact your healthcare provider immediately.

Bleeding and swollen gums

Pregnancy hormones will increase your blood flow, which will make your gums more likely to swell and bleed when brushed or flossed.

If you are experiencing this pregnancy symptom, switching to a soft bristle toothbrush will make the brushing less painful and less bloody.

Sticking with your regular dental exam routine is a good move, but avoid X-rays, which are not recommended for pregnant women.

What Happens to The Baby During Week Twenty-Three of Pregnancy?

At 23 weeks pregnant, your growing baby weighs about 1.25 pounds, about 12.05 inches long. This means that your baby is now about the size of a large mango!

At twenty-three weeks pregnant, your baby can hear sounds from outside your body, such as your voice or the voices of the people around you.

The baby’s hearing will start to develop, and the baby will be able to hear only low-pitched sounds, but the range will expand as the baby’s development continues.

This is the perfect time to start speaking to your baby, singing songs, and voicing your hopes and dreams to them; it is a lovely way to feel more connected to your little one.

The baby is moving inside of your belly, and you are probably feeling the baby’s movements by now! You will feel them even more as you approach and then enter your third trimester.

Pregnancy Checklist During Week Twenty-Three

To stay safe and well-prepared during your pregnancy, and to prepare for the baby’s arrival, you need to fulfill certain tasks to keep up with the journey.

The list of things you need to complete during your twenty-third week of pregnancy will include:

Write a letter to your baby

At twenty-three weeks pregnant, you are probably becoming more and more aware of the baby by the day, which means now is the perfect time to dedicate a letter to them!

You can talk about your feelings, fears, and how much you are looking forward to finally meeting your little baby! It will be a beautiful keepsake to share with your child later.

Get outside and enjoy the sun

Getting enough vitamin D is imperative for pregnant women, and spending time in the sun is the best way to do so.

So get outside every day and enjoy the warm weather, but make sure to lather yourself with sunscreen beforehand and wear a hat!

Look into childcare

Childcare can be a hard thing to secure, and starting sooner than later is always the safest bet if you want to secure your spot.

However, if you plan on having childcare, now is the perfect time to get everything researched and set up for your needs.

Your two main options are a nanny or a childcare center; some of the things you need to consider will include your needs, your means, the pros and cons of both, as well as your budgeting limitations and considerations.

Start picking out the baby’s nursery decor

If you have a designated room for your baby, now is the perfect time to start decorating it and buying the needed furniture.

If you do not know the sex of the baby yet, go with neutral colors that work for both boys and girls, such as green, white, or yellow.

What To Avoid or Begin to Avoid?

It is essential to stay away from harmful things and activities to protect you and the baby inside of you during your pregnancy. During week twenty-three, make sure to stay away from:

  • Smoking, doing drugs, drinking alcohol, and being exposed to toxic substances.
  • Sleeping on your tummy.
  • Performing demanding workouts and carrying heavyweight.
  • Touching kitty litter or cat feces.
  • Drinking an excessive amount of caffeine and carbonated drinks.
  • Getting tattooed as it poses a risk of infection.
  • Eating junk food, deli meats, raw or undercooked meat, 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.