The 9-Month Journey

6 Months

Now a tiny version of a newborn, the fetus is wrinkly, hairy, and covered with a cheese-like coating, called vernix, which protects his skin from constant exposure to amniotic fluid. You might feel him startle at loud noises because your unborn baby's hearing is near-perfect now.

His heartbeat is also strong enough for your doctor to detect clearly with a stethoscope, and his lungs are starting to prepare to breathe on their own. For now, however, the placenta exchanges oxygen in your blood with carbon dioxide in the fetus's. Baby's movements are more coordinated, too, and if you push at a jutting arm or leg, you may find that he pushes back!

By the end of the month, your baby is about 10 inches long and weighs 1 1/2 pounds.

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