The second third of pregnancy is called the second trimester. It covers the period from the 13th to the 24th weeks of pregnancy. Most people find these middle months of pregnancy to be a more relaxed time. They often feel relief due to the significantly lowered risk of premature birth and they also feel physically fitter and mentally more stable.

Levels of the important pregnancy hormone hCG decrease during the second trimester of pregnancy. For many pregnant people, this leads to the disappearance of morning sickness. Unfortunately, you can also expect some new pregnancy symptoms. You may develop varicose veins or hemorrhoids. You may discover brown or reddish stretch marks on your skin. Some people develop the appearance of a straight brown line, the linea nigra, between their pubic bone and their navel. This occurs because more colour pigments are now created in your skin. Your nipples or labia may also become darker. After birth, this discoloration disappears again. General changes to your breasts also start at this time. They grow larger and many people experience a feeling of tightness. Don't be surprised if your mammary glands are already producing a few yellow-white drops from your nipples. Towards the end of the second trimester, other symptoms such as heartburn, calf cramps and back pain may develop. These pregnancy side effects are annoying, but not dangerous. Even if you feel a pulling sensation in your abdomen, don't be worried. These are Braxton Hicks contractions, also called ‘practice contractions’, and they are not uncommon. If you are unsure, however, please contact your gynaecologist.

The fetus is developing rapidly. The skeleton becomes firmer and hair grows. The facial features become clearer and the shape of the ears and eyes are now fixed. The eyes are closed from now on. The eyes won’t open again until the 26th week of pregnancy. The internal organs, brain, lungs and heart continue to develop. Kidney function is trained when the fetus ingests amniotic fluid and then excretes it. In general, the fetus is very active. After all, it still has plenty of room to move around in the womb. You can feel these movements well at the end of the second trimester. At this point, it can react to acoustic stimuli and to light stimuli from the outside. At the end of the 6th month, the fetus is about 26 cm long and weighs around 500 grams.

You can probably still move well because your belly isn't that big yet. If your pants start to fit tighter, you should look for maternity clothes. The time between the 13th and 24th weeks of pregnancy is good for all kinds of errands, for example going to the authorities for necessary appointments, registering for a childbirth preparation course and for visiting a delivery room or birth centre. You should contact a midwife by this point at the latest. Although you may still be wondering what a midwife actually does.