Your baby is about the size of an avocado. Your baby is growing rapidly and his or her muscles are growing stronger as the weeks go by. Your baby relies on you for nourishment, since all his or her energy needs to be directed towards growing bigger and stronger. Eat well! All the nourishment your baby receives goes from you, through the placenta, then straight to your baby. So, remember your baby gets everything you eat or drink.
Your baby’s eyes have grown much bigger and continue to move closer together and develop, but they still remain firmly sealed shut. The retinas are sensitive to light and may be capable of detecting the beam of a flashlight (or any bright light) if you hold it against your belly. If you do this, your baby may actually move his or her hands up to shield its eyes from the glare.
Your baby’s hearing capability is developing now. The bones of the inner ear and the nerve endings from the brain have developed enough so that your little one will hear sounds such as your heartbeat, your stomach growling and blood moving through the umbilical cord. He or she may also be able to hear noises from outside your body, including your voice. He or she will begin to recognize the voices of you and your partner as your due date nears, even though your baby won’t be able to understand what you’re saying for quite a while. Loud noises may startle your baby and make him or her jump a little! You may want to start singing to your baby or playing soothing lullabies (if you haven’t started already), which he or she may even recognize after birth.
By the end of this week, your baby will begin developing sleep and wake patterns. Your baby will be sleeping and waking similar to how he or she will after delivery. These periods are relatively brief and until you can feel your baby moving and kicking, you won’t be able to distinguish when these periods are. Your baby’s sleep and wake cycle will get more and more predictable.