Pregnancy Week 22 – The Baby’s Progress

By pregnancy week 22 the inner bones of your baby’s ears known as the hammer, anvil and stirrup will have hardened enough now to make sound conduction possible and your baby will now able to hear muffled sounds internally and externally of the womb.


Pregnancy at 22 Weeks – Inner Ear Development

Amniotic fluid is a known conductor of sound so now is a good time to begin connecting with your baby through the inclusion of sound perception by talking or playing some soothing, gentle music, all the things she can associate with once she is born. It is these same sounds that will help her find some calm and security as a newborn. Other triggers of comfort can also be the sound of her mother and father’s voice if recognized from in utero.

Her skin is less translucent as she has now developed 2 very distinct layers of skin. There is the surface layer known as the epidermis and a layer underneath called the dermis. Now that the skin is maturing the under layer begins to grow little projections containing nerves and blood vessels and the top layer now carries a surface pattern giving rise to a unique set of finger and toe prints which have been genetically determined. These prints will now appear on the fingers, palms, toes and soles of the feet.

Cross section of skin layers – similar to that of your 22 week fetus

The lungs are still gradually developing and are still not mature enough to transfer oxygen to the bloodstream or exhale carbon dioxide. One strange little sensation you may begin to feel during this second trimester though, as your baby’s diaphragm is now matured, is hiccuping. It has been reported as a strange and repetitive rhythmic movement that occurs for a few minutes at a time. This is simply all part of your baby’s reflex learning and control.

Among other little personality traits your baby is now beginning to adopt at the pregnancy 22 weeks phase is actually a favorite sleeping position. Scans have shown that the same baby can adopt the same position over and over during a sleep cycle, be it with their chin tucked down on their chest, their knees curled up, hands covering their face or their thumb in the mouth. As the baby grows much larger in size, however, towards the end of the final trimester, they will all adopt the ‘fetal position’ with head down and knees up due to the lack of room.

Pregnancy week 22 will see your baby measuring 7.2” (18.3 cm) and weighing 17 oz (482 g).

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(See 22 Weeks Pregnant – The Mother’s Progress)

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