You’re officially 4 months pregnant now — and at 16 weeks, you’ll notice that your baby’s growing rapidly. Over the next few months, your child will grow to look more and more like a real (albeit miniature) person: eye color, fingernails, and toenails should start to form, and while most of his or her bones won’t be fully formed yet, the tooth buds that will become baby teeth are just starting to take shape.
Congratulations! You’re in your second trimester of pregnancy. Your uterus has grown to the size of a large grapefruit, and you can feel your baby moving around inside!This week is shaping up to be an important one: At 16 weeks pregnant, you’ve hit the halfway point — that’s right, you’re now 4 months along! And as your body is (slowly) changing too, it’s time to stock up on maternity clothes if you haven’t already. Keep in mind that some women don’t start showing until much later in their pregnancies — most women will show by 20 weeks — so if your belly isn’t growing quite yet, there’s no need to panic.
Congratulations! At 16 weeks pregnant, you’re officially in your second trimester. Your baby’s growing exponentially over the next several weeks — he or she is double the size and weight of an apple seed. So while you were probably still wearing your regular clothes at 14 weeks pregnant, you might need to start investing in maternity wear. It’s hard to believe that just a few months ago, you were counting days until the wedding — and now this little one has already given you cause to make pregnancy changes.
You’re halfway through your pregnancy now — four months brings a lot of changes for both you and your baby. You might be starting to feel more like your old self again (yay!), but as your baby continues to grow, so do you! What’s happening at 16 weeks pregnant? Check out the most common symptoms and what you can expect at this point in your pregnancy.
You’re finally four months pregnant, which means you’ve got evidence to show your friends and family that you’re really doing it this time. As your really-truly-genuine baby continues to develop inside of you, though, so does the more obvious evidence. If you haven’t already, it’s probably time to start shopping for maternity clothes before your belly swells into something that will attract unwanted attention.
You’re in the middle of the second trimester now, and your baby’s getting busy — he or she is already the size of a mango! A little nervous about the next few months? There’s no doubt being pregnant can be hard, especially as you try to balance your daily routine with the new demands that come with carrying around another person. But think back to when you got up each morning during your first trimester — no nausea, no exhaustion. Your body was probably acing that phase. Chances are, it’s going to pull through for you again. Kick off your second trimester with a positive attitude, some peace of mind, and a warm scarf.
You are 4 months along! At 16 weeks pregnant, your bump is likely starting to show, so it may be noticeable that you’re expecting. You could also begin to feel the first flutters of baby movement this week.
16 Weeks Pregnant Is How Many Months? 4 months
Which Trimester? Second trimester
How Many Weeks to Go? 24 weeks
How Big Is Baby at 16 Weeks Pregnant?
At 16 weeks pregnant, baby is the size of an avocado, measuring 4.6 inches long and weighing in at 3.5 ounces.
16 Weeks Pregnant Is How Many Months?
Sixteen weeks pregnant is four months pregnant—but remember, most doctors track your progress by week, not month.
3D Views: My Baby, My Body
16 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms
More reason to celebrate: There are some 16 weeks pregnant symptoms that are actually good. For example, some moms-to-be find their hair and nails grow faster. Your hair might actually look thicker and more lustrous and your skin might look radiant, too. Woohoo!
Here’s more of what you might be feeling at 16 weeks pregnant:
- Backaches. Your aching back is a side effect of pregnancy hormones. To ease backaches, make some time for low-impact exercise. Sit and stand up straight and regularly stretch your body.
- Bigger boobs. Your breasts have probably gone up several cup sizes by now and should be completely prepped for breastfeeding by the end of the second trimester.
- Constipation. Getting, um, stopped up is an unfortunate result of your uterus starting to press on your intestines. Load up on fiber-rich foods and drink lots of water to keep things moving.
- Forgetfulness. This is also known as #PregnancyBrain. No one knows for sure what causes pregnant women to become more forgetful. It could be biological or it could just be a result of having lots on your mind!
- Dry, itchy, sensitive eyes. Blame the hormones once again! Some moms-to-be find themselves dealing with itchy, watery eyes, especially if they have allergies. You could try over-the-counter allergy medications or eye drops for dry eyes, but be sure to consult your OB before choosing one.
- Glowing skin. Finally—that pregnancy glow that people are always talking about. Va va voom! Keep your skin looking its best by knowing what products to use—and what ingredients to avoid. Avoid Retin-A and salicylic acid containing products.
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If you’re 16 weeks pregnant with twins, your symptoms probably won’t be different than they would be for a mom carrying one baby at this point. You definitely want to keep your doctor posted on all your symptoms, though, since a twin pregnancy is considered higher risk, so your doctor will want to keep close tabs on you and your babies.
What should you feel at 16 weeks pregnant?
As the second trimester continues, you should be gaining more energy. Many moms-to-be enjoy glowing skin, thanks to a combination of more blood pumping through your body and hormones increasing oil production in the skin. On the flip side, you may still experience symptoms you’ve been dealing with for weeks now. Bleeding gums, leg cramps, aches and pains, skin discoloration and swelling are all common occurrences for women who are around four months pregnant.
16 Weeks Pregnant Belly
Pretty soon, you’ll start feeling baby moving around in your 16 weeks pregnant belly. At first, those moves might feel like gas or a muscle twitch, but over time, as baby gets bigger and stronger, they’ll be unmistakable. If you’re 16 weeks pregnant with twins, you won’t feel kicks any earlier than a singleton mom-to-be will, but over time, twin moms definitely feel more kicking sensations.
Of course, feeling those movements comes with other issues, like having your lungs crowded by your growing babe. That could make it seem tough to catch your breath from time to time.
Should you have a baby bump at 16 weeks?
Your bump is probably making its appearance around 16 weeks pregnant, if it hasn’t popped already. There are a few different reasons behind the size of your 16 weeks pregnant belly, which include your expanding uterus and possible bloating from excess fluid in the body. And of course, your growing baby is taking up space too!
16 Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound
Inside your 16 weeks pregnant belly, baby is listening to your voice, thanks to tiny bones forming in their ears. Your 16-week fetus is growing hair, lashes and eyebrows, and their taste buds are forming.
You’ll probably have a four-month prenatal visit around the time you’re 16 weeks pregnant. As usual, you’ll likely have a urine test; your OB will be checking your urine for signs of gestational diabetes and preeclampsia. You may have a 16 weeks pregnant ultrasound at your appointment, too.
What is baby doing at 16 weeks?
Growing! Baby develops a lot during the second trimester, and a 16-week fetus is no exception. The muscles and bones are taking shape, the liver and pancreas start working, lung tissue forms, toenails appear and legs develop. It’s a big week for baby!
Tips for 16 Weeks Pregnant
Prevent acne breakouts
The extra oil your skin produces during pregnancy can lead to pimples, so control flare-ups with oil-free products that do the job while still being gentle enough for you and baby. Look for cleansers and treatment products with glycolic acid or benzoyl peroxide and avoid retinols, but always consult with your doctor before using an acne treatment.
Pregnancy brain can be frustrating, so get ahead of it by making to-do lists. Whether you have a digital planner or use old-fashioned paper and pen, jotting down all you have to do—and it’s probably a lot right now!—helps you keep track of everything without missing a step.
Update your bra drawer
By now your breasts have probably grown quite a bit, and suddenly the bra spillage is real. Skip the sexy lingerie section and invest in some high-quality maternity or nursing bras to best support the girls.
Find a chair with good support
If you’re working through your pregnancy sitting at a desk, it can intensify any backaches you have. Try placing a support pillow behind your lower back, or find a comfortable ergonomic chair that keeps your back straight, not hunched over.ADVERTISEMENT
Pregnancy Checklist at 16 Weeks Pregnant
Reminders for the week:
- Schedule your 20-week prenatal visit
- Schedule your mid-pregnancy ultrasound
- Start a baby name list (if you haven’t already!)
Now that you’re 16 weeks pregnant, things are getting pretty exciting. You may have another prenatal visit this week, where you will get to hear baby’s heartbeat again. Even more thrilling will be feeling baby kick, which could happen starting this week, so pay attention to those subtle feelings in your 16 weeks pregnant belly. Another cool fact? Baby is starting to be able to hear your voice—and they’ll recognize it at birth—so feel free to chat baby up any chance you get.
Your Baby’s Development at 16 Weeks
At 16 weeks, baby measures just under 5 inches (12.4 centimeters) from the top of their head to the bottom of the buttocks (known as the crown-rump length).
On average, baby’s height at 16 weeks measuring from the top of their head to their heels (known as crown-heel length) is approximately 7 inches (18 centimeters).1 Your little one likely weighs about 5 ounces (144 grams).2
Your baby-to-be’s heart is beating around 150 to 180 times per minute,3 and it’s pumping approximately 25 quarts (24 liters) of blood a day.4
Baby’s taste buds and taste pores are developed and working by this week. So, your baby can taste the amniotic fluid as it enters the mouth. Since amniotic fluid takes on flavors of your diet, your baby can now start developing taste preferences while in the womb.5
Head and Body Developments
- Muscles and bones are continuing to grow and complete your baby’s skeleton.6
- Your baby’s head is more erect or straight and in line with the body now.7
- Hair is beginning to appear on the eyebrows, upper lip, and chin.8
- The first eye movements are seen beneath the eyelids between 16 and 18 weeks; once eye motions start, babies start to touch their eyelids.9
- The ability to hear is still developing, but your baby may begin to hear limited sounds this week.10
Explore a few of your baby’s week 16 milestones in this interactive experience.
Stay Calm Mom: Episode 6
Watch all episodes of our Stay Calm Mom video series and follow along as our host Tiffany Small talks to a diverse group of parents and top doctors to get real answers to the biggest pregnancy questions.
Pregnancy Food Cravings: Myth or Reality?
Your Common Symptoms This Week
While your baby continues to grow and develop in week 16, you may continue to see an increase in energy and feel pretty good overall. However, some second-trimester symptoms may continue or pop up. You may have occasional:
Along with that, this week may bring a growing belly, the first signs of movement, and food cravings.
Soon you will feel the little fluttering of butterflies in your stomach, or more accurately, the baby in your uterus. If this isn’t your first pregnancy, you may feel baby flutters, called quickening, as early as 16 weeks. But, if you’re a first-timer, it’s a bit more difficult to recognize, so you may not begin to feel those first movements until week 18 to week 20.11
Whether you feel your first flutters now or later, your baby-to-be is moving quite a lot. Babies are very active in the womb, especially between 14 weeks and 19 weeks, when there’s still enough room to move around.12
Some expecting parents can’t wait to show off a bump while others try to hide their growing belly for as long as they can. If you’re trying to hide it, it’s about to get a little harder since, by week 16, many expecting parents are showing.
Of course, it’s possible that for those excited for the bump, it isn’t as pronounced as you had hoped. That’s because everyone is different, and each person’s body carries the baby differently. Hang in there. You have 24 weeks of growing still to come.
With nausea in the first trimester, you may have experienced some food aversions. But, now that your stomach can tolerate the sight and smell of food again, you may find you have some food cravings.
Food cravings are common. Between 50% and 90% of pregnant people report them. While it’s unclear why pregnancy brings cravings, it could be hormones along with the body’s way of seeking certain nutrients that you need for your developing baby.13
A growing bump may make it more difficult to find a comfortable position to sleep in, but it means your baby is getting big enough for you to possibly start to feel their movements. Dealing with cravings may also be on your mind.
Getting in a comfortable position at bedtime can prove difficult in pregnancy, and that’s even before your belly “pops.” To help you get comfortable:
- Make sure the bedroom is at your desired temperature, not too hot and not too cold.
- Allow the air to circulate in your room with either a fan, the air conditioner, or an open window.
- Go to sleep when you’re tired, so you’re not tossing and turning to try to sleep.
- Use bed pillows, a pregnancy pillow, or wedges to relieve pressure points.
- Start sleeping on your side, especially the left side.14
What Experts Say
“Right now, there is no unsafe position to sleep in. Just do what’s comfortable.”
—Allison Hill, MD, OB/GYN
While you can crave less nutritious, empty-calorie foods just as much as nutrient-dense options, your cravings may be trying to tell you something. It could be your body’s way of getting you to give it a nutrient it wants.
You can definitely indulge in some less healthy treats now and then, the key is moderation, so do your best to make nutritious foods the bulk of your diet. Aim for balanced meals and snacks. Fruit, nuts, cheese, and cut-up veggies are easy and nutritious snacks.
Feeling The Baby Move
Those first baby movements can feel like little flutters, twinges, or gas bubbles. Experienced parents may recognize them sooner since they know what they’re feeling for. People with a lower body mass index may also feel movement a little earlier.
However, there is no need to worry if you cannot feel your baby move at this point. It can take a little longer to feel movements for all expecting parents, especially for first-time pregnancies or those with an anterior placenta. Some pregnant people don’t feel the baby move until 20 weeks or even later.15
As the weeks go on and the baby gets bigger, the movements will be more recognizable. It won’t be long before you and loved ones can feel and even see the strong little kicks through your skin.
Your Week 16 Checklist
- Satisfy your safe food cravings, but eat less nutritious options in moderation.
- Include healthy meals and snacks in your daily meal plan.
- Add some extra pillows to your bed or invest in pregnancy pillow.
- Start sleeping on your side.
- Talk about baby names.
Advice for Partners
Have you thought about baby names yet? Have some fun and drum up a list of your top picks to compare with your partner’s. You can find inspiration and ideas for traditional or unique names by going through your family tree, history books, baby name books, or online sources:
- Biblical names
- Color names
- French names
- Gender-neutral names
- Greek names
- Italian names
- Irish names
- Japanese names
- Native American names
- Spanish names
Whether you have already picked the name or you’re still working on it, you will also have to decide if you want to share the name or your possible choices with others. As you start spreading the “we’re pregnant” news, virtually everyone will ask you what you’re going to name the baby.
If you choose to answer, you’re bound to hear some opinions—and, you might be surprised if not all of them are supportive. Because of this, it’s a smart idea for you and your partner to decide on your name-sharing strategy.
You may want to keep the name between the two of you and let it be a surprise when the baby is born. But, if you do want to share, keep in mind that family and friends may not be shy when letting you know how they feel about your choice. Be ready to gently shut down those with negative opinions, however well-intentioned they may be.
At Your Doctor’s Office
During your routine monthly prenatal check, your doctor will:
- Take your blood pressure
- Record your weight
- Ask for a urine sample
- Check your feet and body for swelling
- Listen to the baby’s heartbeat
- Talk to you about your symptoms
- Answer your questions
Along with the above, your provider may take a new measurement this week: It’s called the fundus or fundal height, and it’s the distance between the top of your pubic bone and the top of your uterus.
This measurement helps your OB or midwife monitor fetal growth. At 16 weeks, the top of your uterus will be about halfway between your pubic bone and belly button when you’re lying down.16
If you’ve opted for genetic screening, you may have blood drawn at this office visit. This blood test is offered between week 15 and week 22 to determine for your baby’s risk of chromosomal abnormalities and neural tube defects.17
Amniocentesis is performed between week 15 and week 20. If you have this test, it may be scheduled this week.
Upcoming Doctor’s Visits
Your next visit may be for an ultrasound. Doctors typically schedule the structural ultrasound, also called the anatomy screen or level 2 ultrasound, between week 18 and week 22.
This ultrasound checks how your baby is developing, the location of the placenta, the baby’s position, and the status of the major parts of the brain, heart, kidneys, bladder, and stomach.18
You might be looking for that perfect name or that ideal sleep position this week. Here a few suggestions to help you with your search.
Baby Name Books
Some expecting parents have names chosen for their children long before they’re even expecting. Some couples pick a name early in the pregnancy, while others wait until the baby is born to choose a name.
If you and your partner are taking your time to make this decision, you haven’t found the perfect name just yet, or you want to do a little more research before narrowing it down, you may want to look through some books together.The 7 Best Baby Name Books of 2022
As your belly begins to expand, it can be challenging to find a comfortable sleep position. A pregnancy pillow provides support to your body and can help you sleep more comfortably on your side.The 9 Best Pregnancy Pillows
Indulging in the occasional unhealthy craving isn’t usually harmful. However, some cravings are dangerous. It’s important to avoid substances such as alcohol, cigarettes, and recreational drugs. But, there are other concerning urges, as well.
Pregnancy can bring some strange cravings—even odder than pickles over ice cream. Sometimes pregnancy can lead to craving non-food items such as ice, sand, chalk, dirt, soap, laundry detergent, and powder.19
While feeding your food cravings in pregnancy is generally not a problem, pica can be. Eating substances that aren’t food can be harmful to you and your baby. So, resist the urge and talk to your doctor about your cravings.
A Word From Verywell
Your baby is doing so many amazing things at 16 weeks. The senses are developing as the baby begins to taste, hear, and even touch. Meanwhile, you’re showing and possibly starting to wonder if those little gas bubbles might actually be the baby moving.
If you can’t feel the baby moving just yet, there’s no need to worry. It will happen soon, maybe even next week.