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Guide to Being 18 Weeks Pregnant

Some Things to Consider

As your little bundle starts to look more and more like a full-on baby, you've got more and more full-on issues to think about. Some of them are serious. Others are just plain fun. Just a few of things you may want to start (or finish) contemplating this week include:

  • Testing -- If you'll be screening and testing for possible genetic problems during your pregnancy, it's going to happen now or in the next few weeks, so you'll need to complete the decision-making process if you haven't yet. Get help from your doctor if you're still having trouble.
  • Names -- If you're finding out the sex, you could know this week! You can start your name-selection sessions in earnest now, if you haven't already. It may take some time to find the right one (or two or three, if you're carrying multiples).
  • Solutions -- While you are at the mercy of your hormones, you're not powerless. You can minimize heartburn by popping Tums and eating smaller, more frequent meals, decrease bloating by avoiding things like broccoli and beans, and sleep more comfortably by wedging a pillow under your belly.
  • Pregnancy leave -- This is happening. And if you work, your coworkers are probably starting to notice. That means it's time to start discussing maternity (or paternity) leave with the powers that be.
  • Changes in fitness routines -- As your body changes, your physical abilities change. It's just the way it is. Be mindful of altered states of balance, blood flow (dizziness and faintness) and joint capacity, and make any necessary adjustments in your exercise routine.

Of course, you may (or may not) be experiencing "pregnancy brain," making mental energy a precious commodity. Either way, feel free to limit the mental focus you spend on some probably needless worries …