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Nine Months : Mother and Baby Watch (Trimester 1)



WEEK 1-4

Conception would have taken place around 2 weeks after your last menstrual period (LMP) if ovulation coincided with the release of your partner's sperm into your body.

You And Your Body

You will be unaware of the changes taking place within your body although some women just know' that they have conceived! You may experience very slight bleeding at the time when your next period would have been due. This is probably the first real indication that you may be pregnant.

Your Baby

* Your baby (called the embryo from now till week 6) is really tiny and can't be seen with the naked eye.

* Although still tiny, it has complete information about whether it will develop into a baby girl or baby boy.

* The beginnings of nerves, skin, bones, cartilage, muscles, circulatory system, kidneys, sex organs, respiratory and digestive systems, are laid down in the form of layers.

* It is amazing how your baby started the journey of life with a single cell and is now about 100 cells strong and still growing.

* Your baby has found its home and lodges itself in the womb where it will stay for the next nine months floating in a fluid-filled sac called the amniotic sac. This sac is a very powerful shock absorber and hence, protects your baby.

* Even from this young a stage, your baby has a mechanism in place whereby it can link with your blood supply. This mechanism will develop into the placenta, your baby's life support system.

WEEK 5

You And Your Body

This is the week when you will miss your scheduled period and will be able to confirm your pregnancy officially using a test. You will also be able to calculate your due date. Although some women sail through the early days of pregnancy, some may start feeling the pregnancy sensations from the very start. These may include:

* You may start feeling very tired even at this early stage.

* Breasts may be tingling or very tender.

* Nipples may start to appear darker than usual.

* Veins in the breasts may become more prominent.

* Strange metallic taste in the mouth.

* Going off tea and coffee.

* Morning (or anytime) sickness or a general feeling of nausea.

* Increased urge to urinate.

All in all, your body is gearing up for the next nine months ahead!

Your Baby

Your baby is only just visible to the naked eye and measures only about 4mm in length. The spinal cord and brain have started to grow and the beginnings of the heart is laid down in the form of a blood vessel.

WEEK 6

You And Your Body

If you are suffering from nausea or morning sickness, you may find that it starts to get worse. This is due to the increased levels of the pregnancy hormone in your body now. You may also start to feel tired and irritable.

Your skin will become either spotty or extremely dry. This is natural. Its just the hormones at work again!

Your Baby

* Your baby is the size of an apple pip now and measures about 6mm in length.

* The heart, whose foundations were laid down last week, starts to beat and doesn't stop for the rest of your baby's life.

* Beginnings of the mouth, ears, eyes, jaw, digestive system have been laid down and four tiny buds have developed which will develop into the arms and legs.

* Your baby's movements can now be picked up on an ultrasound scan. However, these movements are too weak to be felt by you yet.

* The umbilical cord has begun to develop.

* Your baby also has a distinct tail at this stage which is why your baby doesn't look quite so human yet.

WEEK 7

You And Your Body

* You may start to feel dizzy or faint in crowded places or if you stand for too long.

* Tiredness will be a problem, so try and get as much rest as possible.

* You will notice that you may start to lose interest in sex as tiredness and nausea take over your body.

* This is perfectly normal and most women feel this way during the first trimester of their pregnancy.

Your Baby

* Your baby is now called the foetus which literally means the young one.

* Your baby's length is about 1.3cm now, roughly the size of a small grape.

* Your baby has clearly visible arms and legs and the future toes and fingers can be seen at the end of them as clefts.

* Nostrils, lips, tongue and teeth are beginning to form and the embryonic lungs are also developing.

* Your baby's heart has has now started to circulate blood around the baby's body.

* The spine and brain are almost fully developed.

* Although not fully formed, your baby already has internal sex organs, kidneys, lungs and intestines.

* The shape of the tail can still be seen clearly.

WEEK 8

You And Your Body

* Although you may still not appear pregnant to the rest of the world, you will start to see some visible changes in your body now.

* Your breasts and nipples will enlarge.

* Your clothes may also begin to feel tighter around the waistline although you will still be able to fit into your old clothes. (Tip: try the belly belt)

* You will not be able to see it but the colour of vagina will change from light pink to dark pink around this time.

* What you may notice, however, will be an increase in vaginal discharge.

Your Baby

* Your baby is now about 2.5cm long, roughly the size of a strawberry.

* It is surprising how something so small has all the major organs present already, though not fully formed yet.

* Your baby's eyes are still very wide apart on the sides of her head and it will be a while before they settle into the correct position.

* The heart is now pumping with a regular beat.

* The intestines in the foetus's body are so long that they cannot fit into the body and some of them project out into the umbilical cord.

* Your baby's arms and legs are longer and although your baby is kicking with them, she is too small for you to feel her movements.

WEEK 9

You And Your Body

* You will notice an increase in your weight.

* The pregnancy hormone, hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin) is at its peak, so anything unusual that you may be feeling can be blamed to it.

* Your hair will become less oily.

* Breasts may be fuller and feel lumpy or tender at times.

* Hormonal changes cause your gums to become softer and thicker. Pay special attention to oral hygiene.

* See bleeding gums Dental care in the UK is free for pregnant women and till one year after birth of the baby.

Your Baby

* Your baby is about 3cm long now

* Face is developing and the mouth and nose are clearly visible.

* Arms and legs are growing rapidly.

* Tail begins to shrink relative to the rest of the body.

WEEK 10

You And Your Body

* You may start to feel warmer than usual because of increased blood circulating in your body.

* Mood swings are quite common due to hormonal changes, so your partner will have a tough time handling you.

* Wear loose-fitting clothes to accomodate for your changing shape. However, you may still be too small for maternity clothes. (try the belly belt before you start investing in expensive maternity wear!)

* Your uterus (womb) is now the size of an orange.

Your Baby

* Your baby is now about 4.5 cm long and weighs about 5g or 1/4 oz

* The head begins to grow rapidly to accomodate the brain which is still growing.

* External ears are now visible on the head.

* Fingers and toes, although distinct, are still webbed.

* Body is elongating.

* The tail disappears.

By the end of week 10, your baby is out of the danger zone for congenital abnormalities.

WEEK 11

You And Your Body

* Your basal metabolic rate may rise by 25 per cent which means that you are burning calories at a faster rate than before pregnancy.

* Drink a lot of fluids as you may be perspiring more. See sweating

Your Baby

* Your baby is now approx 5.5cm long and weighs abput 10g or 1/2 oz

* Most of the major organs formed.

* Your baby is now safe from any congenital abnormalities and infections (except German measles - Rubella).

* External genitals formed (along with ovaries or testicles).

* Heart is now pumping blood to all the major organs of the body.

WEEK 12

You And Your Body

* Urge to urinate may decrease as pressure from your bladder is lifted.

* Constipation may become a problem.

* Your uterus moves up into your abdomen.

* You should have your first antenatal visit around this time (some hospitals offer a routine ultrasound scan around 12 weeks).

Your Baby

* Your baby is about 6.5cm long and weighs approx 20g or 3/4oz

* Your baby starts to look more human although the head is still too large in proportion to the rest of the body.

* From now on, your baby only has to grow and mature.

* Eyelids have developed and are closed over the eyes.

* Your baby can move muscles of the mouth to frown,open or close the mouth and is practising them all already.

* Heart is beating 110-160 times a minute (about twice as fast as an adult heart).

* Tiny nails begin to grow on the fingers and toes. By the time your baby is born, the nails need trimming already Your baby is able to suck his thumb.

* All the intestines now fit into your baby's abdomen and do not project out anymore.

* Urine is passed which is nothing but the amniotic fluid that your baby swallows from time to time.

* Amniotic fluid is completely replaced every 24 hours.

* If your baby is a male, the female reproductive organs will have degenerated by this time.

WEEK 13

You And Your Body

* You may start to feel better and less tired.

* Irritability may begin to ease.

* You may also notice the first signs of a visible bump. If this is not your first pregnancy, you may start to look pregnant a lot earlier than this.

* Nipples have become a lot darker than before.

* Blue veins in the breasts become quite prominent due to increased blood supply. Infact, they become so prominent that you start to look like the figure in your biology book's chapter on circulatory system!

Your Baby

* Your baby is approx 7.5cm long and weighs about 30g or 1.5 oz

* The production of blood cells has now been taken over by the bone marrow, liver and spleen Bones are developing.

* Your baby's teeth have been laid down although they will not be visible till about 6 months after your baby is born.

* The eyelids meet and fuse together and won't open again for the next four months.

Your baby practices lip movements which are required for the sucking reflex after birth.




               

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