pregnancy-week-by-week

21 weeks pregnant

What to expect this week

What's happening in week 21

21 weeks pregnant

21 weeks into your pregnancy and you are over half way there!

At a glance

  • Your baby is starting to gain weight
  • Now is a good time to book your antenatal classes
  • Talk to your baby to help them recognise your voice when they're born

Your baby at week 21

Your baby is starting to gain weight now, and is laying down some fat, which will give them that adorable chubby newborn appearance the moment you first set eyes on them!

Their skin is also looking a bit different now, as it will have gained a coating of a white, waxy substance known as vernix caseosa. This protects their body from the effects of bobbing around in amniotic fluid for so long! You will probably see areas of it still on your baby when they are born.

You at 21 weeks pregnant

You might be thinking of booking your antenatal classes around now, if you have decided to attend them. Your midwife will have information about free local groups, and you can get details about NCT classes near to you online.

Lots of women make friends for life at their antenatal groups, so if it is your first baby, it is an excellent way of making lots of mum-to-be pals, and sharing experiences (and niggles and moans!) And of course, lots of little same age playmates for your bubba in the future! Classes can get booked up really quickly, so get your name down as soon as you can.

Apart from the socialising, you'll also learn about pain relief in labour, breathing techniques and your options in delivery at your classes – and if you go to a NHS one attached to your hospital, probably a tour of the delivery suite, too. Have a look at our pages on antenatal classes for more info.

What to think about in week 21

You probably find yourself absent-mindedly stroking your bump and chatting away to your baby quite a lot anyway, but did you know that they can hear you, and talking to them now will help them to recognise your voice once they are born? Some mums-to-be like to sit and read story books or sing nursery rhymes to their bumps, or play them certain music – you might even find that there are tunes which make your baby mega active!

Talking and reading to your unborn baby is something that dads can get involved in to, and is a lovely way to bond before birth.

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At a glance

  • Your baby is starting to gain weight
  • Now is a good time to book your antenatal classes
  • Talk to your baby to help them recognise your voice when they're born
Dad's can talk to your unborn baby too  - it is a great way for them to bond before birth

What to expect next