23 Week Pregnant: Symptoms, Tips And Baby Development guide

As you progress through the latter half of your pregnancy, you can feel your enthusiasm and anticipation growing with each passing week. 

It’s essential to maintain your prenatal care appointments and consult your healthcare provider whenever necessary. 

At 23 weeks into your pregnancy, your baby is steadily growing and experiencing significant developments. 

Read on for insights into typical fetal advancements during this stage, as well as advice on symptoms and general recommendations for those who are 23 weeks pregnant.

Related Blog: 22 Week Pregnant: Symptoms, Tips and Baby Development

23 Week Pregnant – Baby Development

Here are the key points about being 23 weeks pregnant and the developments your baby is experiencing:

  • Your baby is about the size of an eggplant, measuring approximately 11.4 inches from head to foot and weighing around 1.1 pounds.
  • Your baby is building more muscle and becoming stronger, leading to increased activity and fetal kicks.
  • The baby’s brain is evolving rapidly at this phase.
  • Your baby can respond to light, and shining a flashlight on your belly may cause them to react and move.
  • The baby’s fingernails have now reached the tips of their fingers.
  • Your baby can recognize familiar sounds, including your voice, thanks to recent ear development. You can engage with them by reading, talking, or singing.
  • Tiny ridges form on your baby’s fingers and toes, which are the beginnings of their unique fingerprints and toeprints.
  • At 23 weeks, your baby spends most of their snooze time (around 80 per cent) in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, where their eyes move and their brain is highly active.

23 Weeks Pregnant Is How Many Months?

At 23 weeks pregnant, you are approximately 5 months and 3 weeks into your pregnancy. Pregnancy is typically measured in gestational weeks, with each month consisting of roughly 4.3 weeks. Therefore, when you reach 23 weeks, you are well into the fifth month of your pregnancy.

During the 23rd week of pregnancy, expectant mothers typically experience heightened awareness of fetal movements as the baby grows and gains strength. Fetal movement counting can help monitor the baby’s well-being, with regular patterns indicating a healthy pregnancy.

Related Blog: 21 Week Pregnant: Symptoms, Tips and Baby Development

23 Weeks Pregnant Bump

As you enter the 23rd week of your pregnancy, you may notice that your belly bump is becoming more pronounced. Starting from the 20th week, your healthcare provider will begin measuring your fundal height, which is the distance between your pubic bone and the top of your uterus. 

From now onwards, your fundal height in centimetres will generally correspond to the number of weeks you’ve been pregnant, with a rough estimate of around 23 centimetres at 23 weeks, give or take a range of 2 centimetres. This measurement helps monitor the growth and progress of your baby and ensures that everything is on track.

23 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms

  • Swollen ankles and feet

Normal puffiness; elevate feet, stay hydrated, and take regular walks. Call the doctor if sudden or extreme swelling occurs.

  • Braxton Hicks contractions

Belly tightening sensation; stay hydrated, change positions, and if they go away quickly, they are typically normal.

  • Backaches

Expected as baby grows; common in twin pregnancies. Report severe pain to your OB for evaluation.

  • Bleeding and swollen gums

Increased blood flow affects gums; switch to a soft bristle toothbrush, floss gently, and maintain regular dental exams.

  • Leg cramps

Common in the second and third trimesters, massage calves, flex feet, and do downward strokes to alleviate cramps.

  • Heartburn

Caused by hormonal changes and pressure from the growing uterus, eat smaller meals, avoid late-night eating, and limit fatty and spicy foods to manage heartburn.

  • Hot flashes

Feeling warmer than usual is common; around one in three pregnant individuals experience hot flashes due to hormonal changes and weight gain.

  • Eyesight changes

Pregnancy can cause extra fluid retention and hormonal fluctuations, potentially leading to eye and vision issues.

Related Blog: 8 Surprising Things Unborn Babies Usually Do In The Womb 

23 Weeks Pregnant – Tips to Follow

  • Use a pillow between your legs and rest with your knees bent for better comfort and improved sleep. 
  • Connect with HR and your supervisor to discuss maternity leave.
  • Keep a water bottle nearby and aim for 8-10 glasses a day.
  • Drink water, cranberry juice, pee when needed, wipe front to back and maintain hygiene to prevent UTI. 
  • Consider organic foods as they have fewer pesticides and are free of artificial additives.
  • Thoroughly clean all fruits and vegetables, regardless of organic or conventional.
  • Try prenatal Pilates to strengthen core muscles and increase flexibility under the guidance of a specialized instructor.
  • Spend 5 to 30 minutes outside daily for vitamin D, but avoid sunburn.
  • Start looking into childcare options if needed, considering centres or nannies, and account for budget and availability.
  • Check health insurance coverage, consider writing or updating a will, and start a savings account for the baby’s future expenses.

Related Blog: 20 Week Pregnant: Symptoms, Tips and Baby Development

Takeaway at Twenty-Three Weeks Pregnant

At twenty-three weeks pregnant, your baby is about the size of an eggplant. Their muscles are developing, and they’re becoming more active. Your baby’s brain is also developing quickly, and it may respond to light or familiar sounds like your voice. As for symptoms, you may experience swollen ankles, Braxton Hicks contractions, backaches, and hormonal changes affecting your gums and eyesight. 

Remember to prioritize self-care, stay hydrated, and discuss maternity leave and childcare arrangements. For expert gynaecological care and support during your pregnancy journey, consider consulting Queen’s Gynecology. From prenatal care to postnatal support, we prioritize your well-being and the health of your baby.


At 23 weeks expectant, your baby is developing steadily and developing in various ways. They can respond to light, have a developing brain and muscles, and recognize sounds. Swollen ankles, Braxton Hicks contractions, backaches, and hormonal changes in gums and eyesight are common symptoms. Tips include using a pillow for comfort, planning maternity leave, staying hydrated, preventing UTIs, considering organic foods, washing produce, trying prenatal Pilates, and taking care of financial and childcare arrangements. Remember to consult healthcare providers for personalized advice.

WeekPregnancy SymptomsTips and AdviceBaby DevelopmentWeek 1– Missed period– Take a home pregnancy test– Fertilization occursWeek 2– Tender breasts– Begin taking prenatal vitamins– Blastocyst implants in the uterusWeek 3– Fatigue– Schedule your first prenatal visit– Embryonic development beginsWeek 4– Morning sickness starts– Avoid alcohol, smoking, and caffeine– Neural tube formsWeek 5– Increased urination– Eat a balanced diet– Heart starts beatingWeek 6– Mood swings– Stay hydrated– Brain and head developmentWeek 7– Constipation– Start gentle exercise– Limb buds formWeek 8– Food cravings– Get plenty of rest– Webbed fingers and toes developWeek 9– Weight gain begins– Avoid raw or undercooked foods– Tail disappears, now considered a fetusWeek 10– Visible baby bump– Wear comfortable clothing– Organs continue to developWeek 11– Darkened areolas– Practice relaxation techniques– Baby can swallow and produce urineWeek 12– Reduced nausea– Consider prenatal classes– Sex organs distinguishableWeek 13– Increased energy– Continue regular check-ups– Baby’s fingerprints formWeek 14– Less frequent urination– Plan for maternity leave– Baby’s facial muscles developWeek 15– Quickening (baby moves)– Do pelvic floor exercises– Baby can make facial expressionsWeek 16– Round ligament pain– Stay active with low-impact exercises– Develops sense of hearingWeek 17– Nasal congestion– Consider a prenatal massage– Baby’s skeleton starts hardeningWeek 18– Belly button changes– Stay well-hydrated– Vernix caseosa covers the skinWeek 19– Braxton Hicks contractions– Eat small, frequent meals– Baby’s kicks become strongerWeek 20– Leg cramps– Begin monitoring baby’s movements– Baby is covered in lanugo (fine hair)Week 21– Shortness of breath– Sleep on your side– Eyebrows and eyelashes appearWeek 22– Linea nigra (skin darkens)– Practice relaxation techniques– Rapid brain developmentWeek 23– Backache– Consider prenatal yoga or swimming– Baby can recognize your voiceWeek 24– Swollen ankles– Elevate feet when sitting or lying– Lungs continue to matureWeek 25– Increased appetite– Continue regular prenatal check-ups– Baby may respond to loud noisesWeek 26– Heartburn– Sleep with extra pillows for support– Eyes open for the first timeWeek 27– Braxton Hicks intensify– Pack your hospital bag– Baby can hiccupWeek 28– Trouble sleeping– Monitor blood pressure– Baby’s kicks become more regularWeek 29– Shortness of breath– Avoid lifting heavy objects– Baby’s bones fully developedWeek 30– Swollen hands– Stay hydrated and avoid salt– Baby may be head-down in preparation for birthWeek 31– Increased vaginal discharge– Take childbirth classes– Baby’s immune system developsWeek 32– Hemorrhoids– Practice perineal massage– Baby’s toenails and fingernails growWeek 33– Trouble finding a comfortable position to sleep– Rest and nap when possible– Baby’s bones start to harden furtherWeek 34– Frequent urination– Prepare for maternity leave– Baby’s central nervous system maturesWeek 35– Braxton Hicks increase– Avoid prolonged standing or sitting– Baby’s skin becomes less wrinkledWeek 36– Pelvic pressure– Finalize birth plan– Baby continues to gain weightWeek 37– Lightening (baby drops)– Stay active with walking– Baby’s head positions for birthWeek 38– Fatigue increases– Do pelvic exercises– Baby’s lungs are fully matureWeek 39– Cervix effacement– Rest and conserve energy– Baby’s immune system continues to developWeek 40– Contractions begin– Monitor contractions– Baby’s digestive system is ready for breast milkWeek 41– Dilation of cervix– Stay calm and patient during labor– Baby’s head molds to fit through the birth canal

Please note that every pregnancy is unique, and symptoms and developments may vary from person to person. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice and care during pregnancy.

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