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Diane Miller

Well on your way: the fourth month

    Having a healthy baby means gaining weight. If you are presently on a weight loss diet, stop. The recommended total weight gain during pregnancy is approximately 25 pounds for the average weight woman.
    Where does all this weight go? Your weight gain includes the fetus (baby), the placenta (organ that feeds the baby), the uterus (womb), amniotic fluid (bag of water), extra fluid in other tissues, increased blood and finally an increase in breast size. Remember, an adequate supply of nutrients and calories for both mother and baby is a must. A variety of foods is the key to be well on your way!
    Your baby is growing rapidly. The fetus will be eight to 10 inches long by the end of the fourth month. You may feel your baby move at this time. This is called “quickening.”
    The kicks may fool you at first, but they will become more obvious with time.
    Don’t forget dad. The father-child relationship is very important. One way to get dad involved is to let him hear the baby’s heartbeat and feel the kicking on your stomach. He could also attend your prenatal checkups and ask the doctor questions. The more he understands about the pregnancy, the more supportive he can be.
    For more information on child development and parenting, contact Diane at (912) 871-0504, dianem@uga.edu or www.ugaextension.com.

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