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Guide to Being 24 Weeks Pregnant


What's Going On In Your Body
While you're taking in fresh sea air, your baby's lungs are developing.
While you're taking in fresh sea air, your baby's lungs are developing.
© iStockphoto.com/sborisov

Size: About 8.5 inches (head to rump). Weight: About 1.5 pounds. Lungs: Getting there.

You're closer than ever to official motherhood, and, luckily, that tiny being in your body is looking positively human these days.

The face is formed, and hair is growing in all the right places (she's got eyelashes, eyebrows and probably something on top). Baby fat is starting to accumulate, so the skin is slightly less bunched-up, although it's still pretty translucent.

Your baby can hear and has a sense of balance, because the ear is fully functional -- so if you haven't started talking to him or her yet, now is the perfect time. Taste buds are tasting, and that increased activity you feel is helping to spurn increased muscle and bone growth.

One of the biggest developments this week, though, is in the lungs, which are preparing at a rapid pace for the first breath of air. The lungs this week are working especially on the system that produces a substance called surfactant, which keeps lungs from collapsing when we exhale. At this point in lung development, if your baby were born there's a possibility he or she could survive with the highest level of medical care.

But, of course, we don't want that, and this -- the risks and signs of preterm labor -- is one of the things your partner may want to be aware of in order to back you up.


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