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Baby Development First Trimester Week 1 Mother: You started your period on the first day of this week

. The last period you will have for at least the next nine or ten months. Some women, especially those who choose to breastfeed exclusively, may not have another period for a year and a h alf! It seems odd to begin counting the weeks of your pregnancy with your last menstr ual period, however, most women are not conscious of the day they ovulate, much less the day they conceive their baby. Since most can remember the day their per iod started, it makes a very clear starting point for determining the due date f or your upcoming birth. Remember that your due date is just an estimate! The average pregnancy last 40 w eeks. Most women deliver their babies between 38 and 40 weeks from the first day of their last period. If you are hoping or planning to become pregnant now is the time to begin improv ing your diet and addingvitamin supplements such as folic acid and iron. Week 2 Mother: Your last period is finished and now your uterus is building a new layer of endo metrium to cushion and nourish your soon to be conceived baby. Interestingly, de ep within the uterine walls circular groups of lymphoid aggregates or immune sys tem cells are beginning to develop. One of your ovaries is growing and ripening an egg, preparing for ovulation. You will experience a rise in your estrogen levels accompanying ovulation making you more receptive to others. Many women find they are at their peak level of e nergy and creativity during this week of their cycle. Week 3 Mother: You will excrete higher levels of pheromones at this time, making you even more sexually attractive than usual. Enjoy! Ovulation occurs during the course of this week. One of your ovaries has ripened and released an egg (ovum). It is swept up by the bell shaped end of the fallop ian tube and begins its journey toward the uterus. During intercourse, your partner will ejaculate anywhere from 140 to 350 million sperm. If the conditions are just right with your cervical fluid, some of those sperm can live up to 5 days. Only about 200 sperm will actually make it through the uterus and into the corre ct fallopian tube eventually encountering your ovum. Sometime between 12 and 24 hours after you ovulate, only one, or in some cases o f twins, two of the sperm will have enough strength left after they reach the eg g in order to break through the outer layers of the ovum and complete conception . Congratulations, you are pregnant! Your progesterone levels will increase this week causing the lining of the uteru s to build up its supply of glycogen, arterial blood, secretory glands, amino ac ids and water. Those higher levels of progesterone also have a calming effect on the uterus, making it less contractible, thereby stopping your menstrual period and allowing the pregnancy to continue. This is why progesterone is often calle d the hormone of pregnancy. The fertilized egg, will spend the next 3 to 7 days traveling down the fallopian tube to the uterus. When it arrives, it will float freely within the uterus for another few days before it implants in the wall of the uterus. You may experien ce a little bloody spotting at the time of this implantation. Week 4 Mother: You should be avoiding all medications unless you've checked with your caregiver about their safety during pregnancy.

you may n eed to urinate more frequently than usual. no one knows the r eason for this. However. Everyone is concerned about the possibility of losing the baby in a miscarriage. you may notice that you are mor e tired than usual. your baby is already unde rgoing great changes. it is ver y important that you have it treated. This is due to the extra blood circulating in that area. The group of cells that will make up the placenta i s being organized and circulatory networks containing maternal blood are being f ormed. try again in a few days or weeks. The endoderm will become the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. Week 5 Mother: Since you were probably expecting your period to start sometime last week. don't despair. Not surprising considering all the changes your body is goin g through. Many women's sense of smell becomes sensitive and things that used to be accepta ble to them. You k now the scene in the classic movies the woman faints and it is a subtle clue that she is pregnant. You may begin to experience nausea or vomiting. sometimes it really happens. Baby is about 1/16th of an inch long. gonorrhea. for instance. urogenital system and most of the muscles. liver and pancreas. Lots of women feel this only in the morning. . If your result was negative. perhaps a bit more tender than just before your period starts. The spinal column. brain and heart have begun to develop. blood systems. by no w you are beginning to wonder if perhaps you are pregnant. syphilis and HIV. You may notice that your breasts are tender. Baby: Although you are as yet unaware that you are pregnant. but researchers suspect that it has to do with the change in hor mone levels. The fertilized egg is now a quickly growing ball of cells called a blastocyst. venereal warts. Finally the mesoderm will develop into the skeleton. Sometimes in a twin pregnancy it is possible to lose one baby and carry the other to term. hair and skin of your baby. and various organs like the th yroid. You may notice that your vulva is a slightly bluish or violet color. yeast infections. Week 6 Mother: You have been pregnant for one month now and your waist may already be a little thicker. Some STDs are capable of harming your unbo rn baby. Well. tobacco. Three layers of cells are sorting themselves out within the blastocyst. frying food and alcohol. Keep in mind though that some women may bleed a little dur ing their pregnancy and still go on to have a healthy baby. If you experience any bleeding. Due to congestion of blood in your pelvis. Occasionally some women may feel dizzy or faint if they stand up too long. many women who are pregnant for the first time are still waiti ng for some visible change in their belly. may now trigger nau sea. trichomonal vag initis. These tests measure the amount of the hormone Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. If you suspect you may have HIV this article may help: Doctors: It's Your Responsibility. Click here for some suggestions on how to deal with morning sickness:Home Remedies for Morning Sick ness Baby: Your baby is now an embryo (so-called due to the little tail at the end of its d eveloping spine) and is only barely visible to the naked eye. If you suspect that you may have a sexually transmitted disease (STD). You may have already purchased a home pregnancy test and gotten a positive result. The ecto derm will form the nervous system. but some may have to deal with it all day long. connective tissues.Some women notice a metallic taste in their mouths about now. The level of this hormon e will rise as your pregnancy progresses and will become easier to detect. cramping or if you pass any clots be sure to co ntact your caregiver. Some common STDs are: genital herpes. It is embedded more deeply in the uterine wall and the amni otic cavity is being formed. Also.

healthy color. be particularly sensitive to environmental risks such as exposure to chemicals. Several articles that can give you more information are: Decreasing the Chance of Birth Defects How Folate Can Help Prevent Birth Defects Precious Babies Better Chances Healthy Pregnancy Healthy Baby: Exercise Good Food And Prenatal Care Are the Key Week 7 Mother You are glowing! Due to the change in your hormones your skin may have a beautif ul. Due to all the increase in your blood supply and the unaccustomed activity in th e lower abdomen. the ears are developing and there are developing lenses on the eyes. to stop smoking. yet. Also. some of which. Read this article to learn how to go about care f or this vulnerable part of your body. The whole baby is still only 1/3 of an inch long. He has begun to grow buds where his arms and legs will be and his head has the beginni ngs of eyes. You can add the fiber by eat ing more raw fruits and vegetables or trying some of the commercial high fiber c ookies designed specifically for relieving constipation. You will want to make sure that b oth you and the baby are well nourished. but are basically the same are prepregnancy. Now is the time. about the size of a grain of r ice. as much as eight 8 ounce glasses a day and adding extra fiber to your diet.Baby: The baby's heart has begun to beat! At about ½ inch long your little one is the size of your little fingernail. the nasal pits have formed. pituitary gland and pancreas are growing. can be contracted by humans. Your breasts are larger now. toxopla smosis for instance. and probably still sore. Though the genital tubercle is present. tobacco smoke and animal diseases. On the other hand. You should be getting your nutrition in order. Your nipples may be darker and the little bumps around the edge of the areola mo re pronounced. You may have gained or lost a few poun ds. You have probably noticed that you need to urinate more frequently now as the gr owing uterus puts pressure on your bladder. you can't tell by looking whether it is a girl or a boy. You are still probably not 'showing' yet. Week 8 Mother: Your uterus is now about the size of a grapefruit. you may be having the worst outbreak of pi mples you've had in a long time. Before you were pregnant it w as about the size of your fist. The arm buds have grown and now the hands are beginning to develop. Exercising Your Pelvic Muscles Baby: . The baby's face is developing rapidly. Starting prenatal care now is essential. some women experience constipation. You may be suffering a bit from heartburn. but the brain. Keeping your pelvic muscles in good order will make your birth easier and have b ig pay-offs as you grow older. It is fairly easy to correc t by making sure that you drink lots and lots of water. drinking or indulging in rec reational drugs. Here are some helpful articles to check out: Pregnancy and Diet The Vegan Diet During Pregnancy and Lactation How Folate Can Help Prevent Birth Defects Baby: The baby's heart is now beating regularly at 150 beats per minute. ears and a mouth. if you haven't already. though it may get worse at the end of your pregnancy. intestines. Hopefully it will pass. For the next four weeks your baby will be most vulnerable to factors that can interfere with proper development.

The good news is that the cervix is also benefiting from these softening and swelling effects. What is far more important than how much you gain is how good your eating habits are. Baby: The baby officially changes from being an embryo to a fetus this week. at this time. The fingers have formed but are webbed. called break through spotting. in other words: 1 ¾ inch and ¼ oz. have a talk with your caregive r about it. This week the baby's gonads will either become testes or ovaries. Some women have a small amount of bloody spotting. All About Eating For Two Regular moderate exercise is good for helping those mood swings. If you were not pregnant. Weight gain is pretty much a given. Bones and cartilage are beginning to form. you would be having your second period this week. The eyes are formed and covered by a fold of skin. you may find yourself with a stuffy nose. hands and fin gers. you may be able to feel it. ankles. elbows. Your little one is now about as long as a paper clip and weighs the same as four paperclips. If you are losing weight due to morning sickness. pregnancy causes a lot of hormonal shifts. Week 9 Mother: From this point on you should find yourself gaining weight regularly. The arms and legs are growing longer and the arms are bent at the elbow. Week 11 Mother: Your uterus is now about the size of a small grapefruit and just about fills you r pelvis. .Your baby is now about 10.000 times bigger that it was at conception but is stil l only about an inch long. This is m ostly due to the fact that his little embryonic tail has disappeared. Week 10 Mother: Is it warm in here? Since your blood volume has increased. the baby will respond by moving. wrist. Moodiness is entirely normal. Since all the mucus membranes tend to swell during pregnancy due to the higher l evels of progesterone and estrogen. you may find that you feel warmer than you did previously and your veins will become more noticeable. The umbilical cord and placenta are forming and growing. feet and toes. If touched from the outside of the uterus. knees. though the eyelid will not op en yet. never m ind adjusting to the fact that your life will change forever with the birth of t his baby. allowin g the baby to hug herself. If you press your fingers into your belly just above your pubic bone. Due to hormonal changes your gums are becoming softer and thicker. how much is enough and how much is too much? That depends on a lot of factors including how much you weighed when you got pr egnant and how good your eating habits are. It won't cure t hem. mi ddle ear fluid or even carpal tunnel problems. Here is another good article o n nutrition during pregnancy. but it will help to make them more bearable. but he is sti ll way too small for you to feel it. Your little one is beginning to move around now and kick his legs. The tip of the nose is now visible and teeth are forming under the baby's gums. You need to b rush them regularly to avoid gum infections. Your caregiver will check how your pregnancy is prog ressing by measuring from the top of your pubic bone to the top of your uterus o r fundus. Baby: Most of the baby's joints are formed now-shoulders. but not fully formed or functio nal. All of his organs are present and accounted for.

Second Trimester . Baby: The baby's chest is rising and falling as it practices breathing movements. a dark line of pigmentation running from the top of yo ur belly to the bottom of your belly. As long as they are not harmfu l go ahead and give in to them in a moderate way. its causes and treatment: A ll About Eating For Two Since you are really beginning to show. The irises of your baby's eyes are developing now.You may still be suffering the effects of morning sickness. remember that regular. This article has some good information about pica. but. The baby's bone marrow. believe it or n ot the end is in sight. Although the baby's intestines were originally formed inside the umbilical cord. The veins on your breasts are probably much more noticeable and your nipples dar ker in color. many women do experience food cravings. More and more of the organs are functioning every day. The liver has begun to se crete bile and the pancreas to produce insulin. so the baby's environme nt stays fresh. ice or nail poli sh. Look for the linea nigra. With kidneys that are fully functioning the baby can swallow amniotic fluid and excrete it as urine. You may notice more changes in your skin. Fuzzy hair is beginning to form on your little one's head. The placenta is functioning now and will take over the production of hormones. Baby: Your baby's little fingers are growing nails now. Are pickles and ice cream sounding appealing? Even if that combo still sounds di sgusting. Some women will have irregular brown p atches. the baby's intestines are contracting in peri staltic movements as if she were digesting food. liver and spleen have taken over the production of red b lood cells. every once in a while a baby is born with teeth already showing. called the 'mask of pregnancy' (chloasma) show up on their face or neck. The baby probably will double his length this week. Regardless of what co lor that hair will eventually be. Baby: Your baby's vocal cords have begun to develop. All twenty baby teeth are formed and waiting beneath his gums until well after b irth. clay. they are now moving into the abdomen. it is white (unpigmented) right now. Week 13 Mother: If you are experiencing some abdominal achiness it may be due to the stretching of the round ligaments that support your uterus. the subject of stretch marks will come u p. If you have leg or foot cramps. The amniotic fluid is completely replaced every 3 hours. starch. gentle exercise and plent y of calcium in your diet can help a lot. The fatigue that you've been feeling will be replaced in the coming weeks with a glorious feeling of energy and well-being. However. This has far more to do with your genetic herita ge than whether or not you use an expensive anti-stretch mark cream. This is a disorder known as pica and should be discussed with your caregiver . Some women do crave harmful things like kerosene. You may or may not get them. Week 12 Mother: Your uterus will shift upwards a bit now so that it will not be pressing on your bladder. Even though she is not eating yet.

Some women notice the development of small tags of skin. It is now pumping out 20% more blood than it did before your preg nancy. Your risk of miscarriage drops dramatically now. One in every 50 pregnant women will be carrying multiples. show them to your care provider. o A fundal height greater than half way to your belly button. giving the baby a much more hu man look. That is twice the num ber of a generation ago. nose and forehead are more defined now. the amniotic fluid com pletely regenerates itself every 3 to 4 hours. the baby is able to smile. The top of your uterus (the fundus) is now half way between your pubic bone and belly button. As the baby's facial muscles attach themselves. Encourage your loved ones to talk to the baby and let her know ho . Make sure you get plenty of fiber in your diet to forestall the constipation tha t troubles some mothers. but if you are concerned about them in any way. o A faster weight gain. Your energy levels should be on the rise again. touch her palms and her fingers will close. constantly providing the baby wit h a clean. looser clothi ng. warm. Baby's neck is longer now and its chin is no longer resting on his chest.Week 14 Mother: Congratulations. Your breasts are already beginning to form colostrum in preparation for the baby 's birth. More informat ion about this test can be found in this article:Genetic Screening for Birth Def ects Baby: The chin. Week 15 Mother: Ever feel as though your heart would just burst with love for your little one? W ell. These are harmless. the truth is that your heart has enlarged in order to handle your increased blood volume. You are almost certainly finding it necessary to move into larger. Signs that you might be carrying twins will include: o A larger than expected belly. Though your little one is still only about 3 inches long and weighs no more than a slice of cheese it has its own distinct fingerprints. Try some papaya to relieve th e symptoms. Due to the leveling off of the hormo ne HcG your nausea should be letting up. Heartburn may now become a problem for some women. Though medical science hasn't completely figured out how. you may find that it return s now and sex is particularly enjoyable. o More than one fetal heart beat. you are now entering your second trimester of pregnancy! You should be beginning to feel better now. It is easily felt and your care provider will use its position to check the progress of your pregnancy. If your care provider suspects twins. Reflexes are now beginning to operate. This is the earliest possible time to consider an amniocentesis. If you had noticed a reduction in your sexual drive. safety cushion. measuring the distance from the top of you r pubic bone to the top of the fundus. Touch the baby's feet and her toes will c url down. This test is us ed to detect genetic abnormalities and determine fetal well-being. she may suggest a sonogram to confirm. More information about how the multiple miracle comes about can be found at: How Multiples are Formed andTwins: Some Things to Consider Baby: The baby can probably hear now and is comforted by the sound of your heartbeat a nd your voice. frown and wrinkle its brow.

Some women find themselves a bit more forgetful that usual. are sens itive to light. If you could see it you would already be a ble to tell if he got Daddy's cowlick. The baby's eyes are moving now and. Other tests such as amniocentesis are more invasive. Sleeping on your belly is quickly becoming uncomfortable and sleeping on your ba ck may cause your growing uterus to compress major blood vessels. Another symptom due to hormones. Loud noises outside the uterus may cause the baby to startle and move her hands up to cover her ears. le gs and belly. Learn al l you can about each suggested test in order to make an informed decision about which you choose to have done. Some tests. schedule one now. Is it a boy or a girl? The genitals are formed well enough now that it may be po ssible to tell one way or the other by ultrasound. not an average. However. involving taking a sample of amniotic fluid to test. That may explain the general achiness in your belly or lower back. though the eyelids are sealed shut. Most of this will disappear before her birth. Speaking of hair. The baby's heart is pumping the equivalent of about 25 quarts of blood a day. If a bright light is held against your belly the baby may gradua lly move its hands up to shield its eyes. so learn to sl eep comfortably on your sides. Many women experience the first detectable movements of the baby (quickening) this week. the baby 'runs' aw ay from it. especially the kegels. Keep up those exercises. You may be more likely to feel the baby earlier if you are extra thin or have had a baby before. The scalp hair pattern is developing. Week 16 Mother: Did you feel that little wiggle? It may not have been gas. known as lanugo is now covering the baby's e ntire body. you are an ind ividual. This is because the sound waves used by the devise are audible in th . using extra pillows to help support your arms. Baby: Baby is growing.w much she is loved already. The baby is just now starting to outweigh the placenta. The placenta is now fully formed and functional. a very fine down. Remember though that scans ar e not infallible. The issue of prenatal testing for birth defects should be coming up as most are done between 15 and 18 weeks. This fat will help her to maintain her body temperature after birth. Week 17 Mother: The average weight gain at this point is 5 to 10 pounds. The ligaments in your abdomen are stretching to accommodate your enlarging uteru s. Bleeding gums can become a problem for some women. The baby is drinking an average of 16 ounces of amniotic fluid a day now. You may notice that every time your midwife tries to use the Doppler to listen to the heartbeat. Some babies will need a nail trim righ t after birth. Baby may experience his first case of hiccoughs. Later you will be able to feel them too as rhythmic taps in your belly. If you don't feel it. don't worry. Colorless eyebrows and eyelashes have now appeared and the hair on the head is g etting thicker. If you haven't had a dental c heckup lately. many first-time moms don't feel it until 22-24 weeks. Baby: Brown fat deposits are forming under the baby's skin now. such as AFP (alpha-fetoprotein) are do ne by taking blood from you and screening it. Fingernails and toenails are forming now. The baby will make purposeful movements now. so if you have been eating good food in appropriate amo unts you have gained just the right amount for you. she may be up to 6 inches long now and weighs in at 3 ounces.

e uterus. Though there is no direct exchange of blood between you and the baby. Are you really hating the dark spots or mask ofpregnancy? Try to avoid the sun. Meconium. If you experi ence any of these. The taste buds are developed enough now for the baby to distinguish sweet and bi tter. or dark area around the nipple may actually be getting larger. The average temperature within the amniotic fluid is 99. cheesy textured substance. if you haven't alread y. This effect of pregnancy can l ast up to a year after the birth of the baby. is beginning to accumulate in the bow el. th ere are warning signals that all women should keep an eye out for. empty your bladder completely and wipe front to back. What is most surprising is that this growth is usually p ermanent. If a bitter substance is injected into the amniotic fluid she will grimace and stop swallowing. This is not harmful. The little ones weight is almost up to half a pound now. Be careful to prevent bladder infections by practicing good toilet habits. Due to the growth of your belly. affec ting your sense of balance. Still suffering from dizzy spells? Your blood sugar levels are affected by pregn ancy and you may benefit from eating smaller meals more frequently. Baby: The baby's bones are growing harder. contact your care provider immediately yes. a white. Week 18 Mother: Have you noticed that your care provider tests your urine at every visit for tra ces of protein and sugar? This is an easy. Your breasts have each gained 6 or 7 ounces in weight. the placen ta is transferring nutrients and oxygen from your blood to the baby via the umbi lical cord. weight gain. This may c ause you to feel faint if you stand up quickly. Your fundus should be just below your belly button now. Alway s go as soon as you feel the urge. Many women's feet grow with each pregnancy due to the general loosening of ligaments going o n throughout your body. It is made up of undigested debris from the amniotic fluid and various secre tions of the digestive tract. stronger. it can increase the darkening. Vernix. some studies have shown that up to 60% of all expectant fathe rs experience some symptoms of pregnancy. Week 19 Mother: It's not your imagination. Read more about this disorder in this art icle: Understanding Gestational Diabetes: Introduction Believe it or not. Although the vast majority of women sail through pregnancy with nary a hitch. especially where it is stret ching. your shoes really are getting too tight. is now covering and protecting the b aby's delicate skin. Your cardiovascular system will react a little slower than usual now. non-invasive way to monitor you for t hefirst signs of gestational diabetes. just rememb er to compensate for it. Your little boy's prostate gland is beginning to develop. Think about looking into childbirth education classes now. You may find that your skin is extra dry and itchy. My. even if it is the m iddle of the night. One study measured the decibel level as being the same as a helicopter hovering over your house. the baby's first bowel movement. it's warm in here.6 degrees F. o Severe abdominal pain . The areola. your center of gravity is shifting lower. These include nausea. moo d swings and odd food cravings. Use your favorite moisturizer to soothe it and remember to drink plenty o f water.

you've reached the halfway point!! Some women experience vision changes during pregnancy. This is about the same ratio as a newborn. The uterus is growing and taking up more room now. If you are carrying twins. avoid standing for long periods and put your feet up frequently. or increased appetite and weight gain o Loss of pleasure and interest in activities once enjoyed. Wea r flat shoes and support hose. Buds for permanent teeth are now forming behind the buds for baby teeth. The baby spends about 6 hours a day awake and 18 or so asleep. but they'll catch up. Okay. Baby's toes are not quite as developed as his hands. If it is on the slow end of the range it is a boy or is it the o ther way around? The baby's sense of smell is present now. it is a good idea to make sure your iron levels are high enough.6 Blurry vision Severe headache Severe vomiting Any injury or accident that gives you concern about your pregnancy Your little girl now has about 6 million rudimentary eggs in her ovaries. sing and talk to your baby. they w ill decrease to about 1 million by the time she is born.o o o o o o o o o Baby: Vaginal bleeding Severe swelling of the face or fingers Loss of fluid from the vagina Prolonged lack of fetal movement Fever over 101. The amniotic fluid has reached a volume of about 12 ounces while the baby is wei ghing in at 10 ounces or so. Go ahead and read. Baby: Your little girl's uterus and vagina are developing now. middle-of-night or early-morning waking o Reduced appetite and weight loss. spina bifida or other central nervous system abnormalities. crowding your other organs. If you wear contacts the increased fluid in your eyes may make them uncomfortable. Studies show that newborns rememb er familiar voices and songs from their uterine home before birth. anxious or "empty" mood o Sleeping too much or too little. your uterus is 2 or 3 inches higher than your navel. varicose veins may begin to show themselves. Your baby's heart is beating at a rate of 120 to 160 beats per minute. If you have a tendency to them. You should be feeling more emotionally stable now. This is entirely normal as long as it is not accompanied by a foul odor or odd color. Week 21 Mother: You may be able to see your abdomen ripple as the baby moves. If your little one is suffering from hydocephalus. You may notice an increased amount of vaginal discharge. talk with your care provider about your feelin gs. they can be seen by ultrasound now. Or at least a flattie. An old wi fe's tale has it that you can tell the sex of the baby by whether its heart rate is fast or slow. Any changes you notice should be minor and will correct themselves after the birth. restlessness . Although being a little out of breath right now is probably because the uterus i s pushing up against your lungs. Anemia can also cause breathlessness. o Persistent sad. S ome women have trouble breathing from this point until the baby drops. including sex o Irritability. If you feel you have any of t he following signs of depression. it's definitely an outie now. Week 20 Mother: Hurrah. Your navel is getting stretched out of shape now as your belly grows and the top of your uterus (fund us) is directly behind it.

Try sitting up as straight as possible or lifting your arms ove r your head. Your care provider can palp ate your belly and tell what position he is lying in. hopeless or worthless Thoughts of death or suicide You may notice some swelling in your legs. remembering or making decisions Fatigue or loss of energy Feeling guilty. Your care provider may suggest doing a vaginal examination of the cervix a t about this point in your pregnancy. this keeps th e baby safe from the intrusion of germs. if your baby were born no w she would have a 10-35% chance of survival. so try not to skip any meals. Some women find that they are having trouble with hemorrhoids. Baby: Your baby should be moving vigorously by now and can be stimulated or soothed by you. some women have a cervix that is over eager to open up or that is a bit thin and weak. gain weight and lay down the necessary amount of fat for good health. Baby's legs have grown longer and are now in the proper proportion to the rest o f his body. you may find that you are more clumsy than usual. Baby: Your baby's pancreas is developing well and is even beginning to produce insulin . Ask your care provider for comfort measures if the hemorroids are itching. Although the baby is still very thin. especially if you have had this crop up in a previous pregnancy. (Don't worry. Take care to drink lots of water and eat loads of fiber to keep your stools from getting hard. That is just an old superstition. painful or bleeding. You may occasionally feel a stitch in your side.o hronic o o o o Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment (such as c pain or digestive disorders) Difficulty concentrating. even holding hands. The uterus is now pushing outwards on your ribcage so you may find your ribs get ting a bit sore. Twins seem to have no trouble finding each other. The bones in the little one's middle ear are hardening now.) Baby: Your baby now weighs between ¾ and 1 pound and is about 10 inches long. Wear low-heeled shoes to save strain on your back. not only for the birth. she is beginning to grow. If a loved one lays their head against your belly and are very quiet they may be able to hear the baby's heartbeat. lifting your arms over your head will not wrap the um bilical cord around the baby's neck. Week 23 Mother: Your cervix should be tightly closed and sealed with a mucus plug. This is due to th e extra weight from pregnancy and the tendency to constipation that many pregnan t women have. However. the change in your center of gravity and the looseni ng of your ligaments. to make sure that this is not an issue for you. Baby's liver is now starting to function. but . The baby is hungry even if you are not. The hemorroids often go away after pregnancy. Try to avoid standing for long period s of time and put your feet up when you sit down. keep up your regular routine of gentle exercis e. Doctors term this condi tion "incompetent cervix" and it is a concern because it can lead to premature b irth. Remember that you are in training for a marathon. Weighing in at a pound and looking like a little doll. This is a result of the uterine muscles stretching and should be eased by taking a rest. Week 22 Mother: Due to your increased size. You should be able to really feel the baby move now. Week 24 Mother: Though it would be easy to forgo.

See which ones your baby likes the best. You may begin feeling your belly tighten and relax at odd moments or irregular i ntervals. Baby is working out her own waking and sleeping periods. just position it below your belly. That is comparable to a 130 lb. press the small of your back against the wall. and they won't always c oincide with yours. These are Braxton-Hicks contractions. you may have d ry-eye. try doing some pelvic rocks to relax it. an extreme rise in your blood p ressure or blurry vision. swelling of your face or fingers may be a sign of impending preeclampsia (toxemia). so go ahead and expose yours to lots of differen t types. o Constant or occasional menstrual type cramps o Constant or occasional low. dull backache o Low pelvic pressure o Abdominal cramping (may or may not accompany diarrhea) o Uterine contractions every 10 minutes or less. Unborn babies respond to music. A s you inhale a breath.for life with a new baby. This is a harmless condition some pregnant women get and can be treated at home with artificial teardrops. preparing them for taking over the task of getting oxygen into the blood stream. that's double her weight of just a few weeks ag o. woman gaining 43 pounds in one w eek! The lungs are gaining blood vessels now. The baby's brain is now registering brain wave activity for the visual and audit ory systems. These can be fun to dis cuss with other pregnant women. the tech could be wrong! The surfactant that is essential for lung function after birth is beginning to d evelop. Baby: All 33 rings. While a little trouble with swollen ankles is perfectly normal. Baby: The baby may weigh 2 pounds now. Week 25 Mother: Increase blood volume and circulation under the skin should leave you looking ro sy. Learn the warning signs for preterm labor now. Your little one's skin is becoming less transparent now. Exhale and relax your back. An ultrasound at this point could reveal whether your little one is a boy or a g irl. 150 joints and 1000 ligaments in the structure of the spine are fo rming now. Your fundus is above your navel now. Stand with your back against the wall. Other signs to watch for include a sudden large weight gain. If you are somewhat light sensitive and your eyes feeling gritty. That is 1/3 of his tot al body weight. They are painless and help the u terus prepare for the birth. knees slightly bent. painful or not. ac ross your pelvis. but just remember. Be sure to wear your seat belt in the car. Week 26 Mother: If your back is feeling the strain of your growing belly. That explains the tap dance routine at 2 am. You can learn more about this in this article:Unde rstanding Gestational Diabetes: Introduction Baby: Your little one may put on as much as 6 ounces this week. Your uterus is now approximately the size of a soccer ball. . Some women may have vivid dreams during their pregnancy. because the earlier it is detecte d the easier it is to control. Your care provider may suggest doing a glucose tolerance test at this point to r ule out gestational diabetes.

are beginning to develop. Many babies have developed a predictable routine for sleep and active periods. as he responds to your touch through your belly wall. but are now descending into the scrotum. Third Trimester Week 28 Mother: Congratulations! You are now entering your third trimester the home stretch! Your breasts are producing ample amounts of colostrum now. traveling at 4 mph. try eating smaller. Make sure that you are keeping up with your prenatal vitamins. Now. Most accidental falls during pregnancy cause no problems. This is a reassuring sign for any who might have wondered if their breasts really would provide the needed nourishment for their baby. The retina at the back of your baby's eyes is beginning to develop.Touching and playing with the baby is possible now. don't worry. thos e wrinkles that are completely normal on the surface of the brain. Baby: Those beautiful baby eyes can open now. due to rapid growth. due to the superior cu shion the amniotic fluid provides. If yours are not leaking. Your little boy's testicles developed within his abdomen. if it were absolutely n ecessary. In the meantim e. Brain wave recordings show rapid eye movement now. however. Week 29 Mother: By this point in your pregnancy your blood volume has doubled. Rest assured that it will go away once the baby is born. but don't let that faze you. Thanks to the crowding of your stomach. paying off in a healthy baby with a healthy mommy. more frequent meals and remain upright for a time after e ating. call your care provider if you fall and then notice a sudden discharge of fluid from the vagina or sever e abdominal pain. Ke ep eating a healthy diet and the pounds will take care of themselves. and the baby will notice and turn her he ad if you shine hold a flashlight against your belly. Week 27 Mother: You may begin to put on weight more quickly now. Blood flows through the umbilical cord and through the baby's body within 30 sec onds. it is in there. Not only is she able to open and close her eyes. For more in depth information on the subject of Rh incompatibility read this article: The Rhesus Factor. Baby: Your baby's hair is growing and gaining color now. They won't really even up for a while af ter birth. Ask yourcare provider for suggestions on treating it. The little one's lungs are now capable of breathing air. Up until this point your baby's brain was smooth. You should. heartburn may be a problem for you as ti me goes on. your care provider may s uggest a shot of Rhogam for you. T wins may have entirely different routines from each other. Some shortness of breath can be expected as the growing baby pushes up. The baby's skin is very wrinkled right now due to the fact that the skin grows f aster that the fat layer underneath it. Some women may even f ind their breasts are leaking. The hair follicles on the skin are just now forming. If you are Rh negative and your partner is Rh positive. crowding your lungs. but she's even got little eyela shes to bat. Pregnancy can cause a rise in your blood pressure called PID or Pregnancy Induce . anemia can crop u p again around this time.

is disappearing now and being replaced by actual ha ir. Baby: The early baby fuzz. All 300 bones in the little one's body are present and accounted for now. you are beginning to slow down now. Nursing is still possi ble of course. Due to deposits of fat under the skin. though some of them will fuse after birth. If it is significantly less than that your care provider may be concerned about intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR). This means that the baby may not b e growing as well as he should be. Some babies are already sucking their thumbs. It is more likely to occur in a multiple pregnancy and may only affect one o f the babies. even within the womb. Baby: Your baby's irises are now responsive to light. though the brain will not reach full size until your child is 5 years old. This only happens in 3 to 7% of all pregnanci es. Baby is approaching 16 inches long and is weighing about 3 pounds now. his growth will focus on maturing those organs and growing muscle mass and fat stores. No new nerve cells will be added after birth. dilating and contracting as need ed. The baby's bone marrow has now taken over production of red blood cells. Week 30 Mother: Exercise is still an important activity for you. lanugo. Try swimming. Now is the time to take a good look at your breasts and nipples. Intrauterine Growth Retardation If you find that the increased weight of your breasts is uncomfortable when slee ping try wearing a soft but supportive bra to bed. al lowing your hips to spread in preparation for birth. If they look fl at or even inverted. Now that almost all of the baby's organs are functioning. both of which lie slightly to the right of your spine. Pay attention to y our body's signals and rest when you need to. Week 31 Mother: Are you waddling? This is because the ligaments in your pelvis have softened. The baby's brain is growing rapidly. and more small movements of the arms and legs. . She will have her knees tucked up to her chest now all the time in the 'fetal position'. even though it gets harder as y ou get larger and heavier. The top of your uterus (fundus) should be about 4 ½ inches above your belly button now. your little one's skin is now pink rather than red. He should more than double his weight again between now and birth. have a talk with your care provider. It is possible for the baby to cry real tears. but may require some additional preparation. Lying on your left side is the ideal position for sleeping since it prevents the weight of the baby from obstructing the blood flow through the vena cava and ao rta. stretching and walking all excellent opti ons for pregnant women. like somersaults. your baby will make fewer big mov ements. developing hundreds of billions of new nerv e cells. leaving a grand. You will probably find that though you've been feeling pretty energetic througho ut your second trimester. All of this work will be finished by birth. Due to the lack of space available to her now. lifetime total of 206. The time is ripe to begin writing down your plans for your birth.d Hypertension. Your baby's nails are now long enough to reach to the tip of her fingers or beyo nd and may need trimming as soon as she's born so she doesn't scratch herself. Check out this article on writing birth plans:Planning to Empower Baby: Space is getting really tight for the baby. Yourcare provider will be checking your blood pressure at every visit to make sure this is not an issue for you.

You could: o Get on your knees and rest your chest on the floor. Som e 3 to 4% of babies choose a head up or breech presentation. If you are carrying twins or more. Baby: Your baby is putting on weight quickly. a bit of swelling in the feet and ankles is normal. interesting m usic against your belly. How Will I Know I'm in Labor? . Some boys are born with one or both testicles undescended. Again. Hold this position f or 15 to 20 minutes. Week 32 Mother: By this time you are probably really wondering what to expect during labor. Regardless of race. You may gain a pound a week for the rest of your pregnancy. be sure and contact your care giv er right away. your baby's nutrient demands are high. o Have Daddy talk to the baby with his mouth very low on your belly. o severe headache o sudden increase in swelling o swelling of the face o nausea or vomiting or abdominal pain o seeing spots or other visual disturbances Baby: Your little one is preparing for life on her own by storing iron in her liver. their weight increase will be slower than sin gletons because of the lack of room in the uterus. the y usually show up before the first birthday. having doubled her weight in the last mo nth. She probably weighs well over 3 pounds now. Your little boy's testicles should have finished descending into his scrotum by now. or vertex. From this point on your baby's weight will increase faster than his length. There are approximately 2 pints of amniotic fluid sharing space in the uterus wi th the baby. After all. o Put a small radio or a set of headphones with some gentle. don't worry. Occasionally you may have rib pain where the baby is pushing against your ribs w ith his foot. Her true eye color w ill develop in the few weeks after birth. you are facing a trem endous physical challenge in the next few weeks and after that a profound change in your family life. position by this point. your baby's eyes are a dark gray color.A loud noise near you may cause your little one to jump. There are some thin gs that you can do at home to encourage your baby to turn to a head down positio n. Half of the weight you gain now will go directly to her. Massaging the area and talking to the baby may encourage him to mo ve it. Now is not the time to go on a diet! It is easy to get somewhat emotional right now. just above your pelvic bone. This article will give you an excellent overview of labor and the birth process: Wha t Happens During Labor? If you are carrying twins. Week 34 Mother: Braxton Hicks contractions may be getting more numerous and stronger. The vernix covering your baby's body has become thicker. your uterus is already as large as if you were full t erm with a single baby. several times a day. Week 33 Mother: Keep up your good dietary habits. encou raging the baby to turn down. o Hold a flashlight against your belly moving it slowly toward your pubic bone in downward strokes. Many babies will have chosen a head down. but if you experience any of these signs of toxemia (preeclampsia).

. If your baby has dropped you may find yourself visiting the bathroom as often as every 45 minutes since she is resting right on top of your bladder again. There are several areas that are scrutinized and scored: o Number of gross body movements o Movement of arms and legs o Reactive fetal heart rate o Amount of amniotic fluid o Movements of the baby's chest Baby: Your baby is drinking about a pint of amniotic fluid a day now and urinating the same amount. Your blood pressure will probably be slightly higher than what is normal for you when not pregnant. as you inhale flatten the small o f your back against the wall. This is called "lightening" or "dropping". About 90% of babies born this week survive. Stand with your back against the wall. Though the baby is putting on more weight. relax as you inhale. It will help to control swelling ankles. whether it has begun to efface (grow thinner). It is entirely up to you whether or not or how ma ny vaginal checks you want to have. You may notice an occasional tingling or numbness in your pelvic area. Keep your diet healthy.000 times its nonpregnant volume. She will be checking to see whether the cervix has begun to move forward from a posterior (back) to an anter ior (front) position. or whether it has begun to dilate (open). You may hear your care provider refer to it by saying that your baby is now 'engaged. const ipation and keep your skin healthy. Your care provider may want to test you for Group B Strep bacteria in your vagin a.' You m ay notice yourself when this happens because it will suddenly become much easier for you to breathe. others like to let things happen more naturally. Week 36 Mother: Up to this point your baby has been floating freely. Some care providers might suggest a biophysical profile if they are concerned ab out the well being of the baby for any reason. Week 35 Mother: You are probably visiting the bathroom pretty frequently again. try doing pelvic tilts before you retire. In order to avoi d getting up too many times during the night. If you are carrying twins they will probably be in the positions now that they w ill stay in until birth. Here are some frequently asked questions about GBS: Group B streptococcal Dis ease (GBS): FAQs Baby: Your baby is now approximately 20 inches long and weighs close to 5 pounds. Thanks to antibodies crossing the placenta the baby is developing immunities to mild infections. There should be a sufficient amount of surfactant in your little ones lungs for them to work well on their own now. Singletons may still change from a vertex to breech pre sentation or vice versa. most with no significant problems. Your uterus has grown to 1. she really needs the next few weeks t o finish plumping up before her birth. At any time now he will sin k down into your pelvis.Be sure to drink plenty of water. Some women like to have as much information as possible. Your little one is weighing about 4 ½ pounds now and is approximately 17 inches lo ng. This is a n effect of the weight of the baby pressing on nerves in your pelvis and legs. Some care providers will want to do vaginal exams every week for the last few we eks to keep an eye on the condition of your cervix. Some nutritionists suggest adding an extra 200 calories to your diet to meet the additional needs of your growing baby.

either head down (vertex) or but t down (breech). they w ill help to move the cervix forward and begin the thinning (effacement) and dila ting (opening). You may notice a bit more vaginal discharge and/or cervical mucus. Also. Baby: Your baby is now surrounded by a peak volume of 1. The vernix that has been covering and protecting your baby's skin is dissolving now. stronger and closer together. Thi s is approximately equal to 4 cups. but just wait un til your water breaks. even if a knot forms. If you go into labor at this point your careprovider will not try to stop it. it'll feel like Niagra Falls! From this point on this amo unt will decrease gradually. Who will cut the umbilical cord? Be prepared for it to be tougher than you expec t. o A trickle or gush of fluid from your vagina. o Contractions that are not affected significantly by a change in your act ivity level.000 ml. You may be really curious by now as to what to expect during labor. Keeping your pelvic floor muscl es toned will aid in a quicker recovery from the birth. The circumference of the baby's head is about the same as his abdomen now. just be careful that you don't climb up on chairs in your e nthusiasm and risk a fall. So what are the signs that your labor may be starting? o Regular contractions that grow longer. The lanugo on your baby's skin is wearing off. You need to conserve your energy for the hard work ahead in labor. It is designed to resist compression inside the uterus so the blood supply to the baby is never cut off. especially your Kegels. Any hiccups your baby has now will be really obvious to you! Your little one's nervous system is maturing now. Any movements that they ma ke are more likely to be rolls from side to side. If you are carrying twins you will be interested to know that according to the N ational Organization of Mothers of Twins Clubs (NOMOTC) the average twin birth o ccurs between 36 and 37 weeks and the babies weigh an average of 5 pounds apiece . Week 38 Mother: Braxton Hicks contractions may be getting more frequent and more intense. guard against wearing yourself out. The majority of babies are now in the position. Your little one is gaining as much as an ounce a day at this point. o A regular. of amniotic fluid. that they will maintain until birth. rhythmic backache. Week 39 . Do you find yourself cleaning out cupboards you haven't looked in for months or washing all the contents of your linen closet? You may be nesting! This is a ver y common phenomenon. If your little one is still in a breech position you may want to open a dialog w ith your care provider about what your options are. Educate yourself by reading this article: Baby in the Breech Presentation Week 37 Mother: Keep up those exercises. The cortisone that is being produced by her endocrine system will help her lungs to take over the job of delivering oxygen to her blood stream after birth. A great arti cle to review is: What Happens During Labor? Baby: Your placenta has grown to an average of 7 inches in diameter and weighs from 1 to 2 pounds. almost ready to be on his own. The good news is that these contraction s are accomplishing some of the work of preparing for the upcoming birth. For so me women they can be quite an annoyance. It doesn't sound like much.Baby: Your baby's little knees and elbows are developing dimples now.

Ultimately the decision is up to you so it is important for you to be as fully educated on your options as possible. that date was just an estimate based on averages. Your care provider may be raising the option of getting your labor started by ar tificial means. You are very close now to the end of your pregnancy and are no doubt wondering h ow you will know for sure if you are in labor. If at any time you are concerned about your baby's welfare. Baby: Your little one is completely formed. Some women will welcome the idea. Try to treasure these last days before your baby's birth. call and talk to your care provider. but they should be ready to go now. the amniotic fluid will continue to replace itself completely every three hours. How Will I Know I'm in Labor? Baby: Your little one's bowels are already filled with the sticky black meconium that will become her first bowel movement. but your labor will begin. but reme mber. If there are signs of meconium in the amniotic fluid at birth your care provider will make sure that the baby's throat and lun gs are suctioned thoroughly. but much depends on t he mother's size and general health and the baby's sex (boys are generally a lit tle heavier than girls). About 30% of babies move their bowels before birth. but. Floating or soaking in warm water can be a wonderful comfort measure for those t imes when the sheer weight of your belly is too much for you. Notice how long it takes to reach 10 movements. Do this for several days to get familiar with his average. The waiting gets a bit harder. Week 41 Mother: Don't worry. Take a look at this informative a rticle. If your water breaks. The lanugo is probably all gone from the baby's skin now. The lungs are the last organs to reach maturity. only 4% give birth on their due da te. If you are worried about his lack of movement you may wa nt to do a kick count. Even while you are in labor. make sure you notice any color or odor it may have. About 15% of the baby's weight is fat. This is essential to help the baby regula te her own body temperature after birth. Pick a time of day when your baby is ordinarily active to sit and count how many movements he makes. About 98% of women give birth between 38 and 42 weeks gestation. or feel that somethi ng may be wrong. others will be horrified by it.Mother: Just a week or so left. Week 40 Mother: You are probably getting impatient as you near your estimated due date. You will probably find that your baby is so cramped for space that he moves less often than he used to. though there may be a bit left in creases and across the shoulders or tops of the ears. Be sure to talk the subject over with her thoroughly so you can . it may speed by or drag out. your c are provider will want you to give them a description. no matter how vague the feeling is. you are by no means the only woman to carry her baby past her due d ate. The average size for your little one is over 7 pounds now. after all you'll never be as close to each other again. Usually this is a sign that the baby is under some stress and can cause pneumonia if the baby inhales any am niotic fluid with meconium in it. Now is a good time to do a quiet activity that takes a good bit of concentration like putting photos in an album or addressing all your snail mail baby announcements. For one reason or another your care provider may want to discuss starting your l abor artificially (induction). You are technically not post-dates (overdue) until you have passed 42 weeks. all organs mature and ready to function on their own.

You will probably see this in the toilet. You may even be able to tell that he recogni zes them by calming down and becoming alert as you read. . especially after a vag inal exam from your care provider o Contractions that start and stop off and on. o A rhythmic back ache. Week 42 Mother: You will probably find that if you haven't gone into labor yet. It will look exactly like its name. Make sure you get all the details about what tests are advised. but probably gradually gett ing stronger. Baby: The baby is still putting on weight. You may feel comfortable with having a non-stress test done to check your baby's well being. This would involve getting hooked up to an external fetal monitor t o determine how active and responsive your little one is. You may also want to research some non-medical home t echniques for getting labor started. You may recognize some of these early signs that labor is near: o Loose stools o Bloody show (blood tinged mucus from the vagina). Your little one will enjoy hearing you read the same stories after his birth tha t you read to him before his birth.make an informed decision. though more slowly now. Baby: The 'average' first baby is born 4 days after her estimated due date. o Losing the mucus plug. tinged with blood. It begins to break down and become less effec tive after its 40 to 42 weeks are up so your care provider will be keeping a clo se eye on the well-being of your baby. your body is giv ing you signals that birth is imminent. The placenta is a temporary organ. a plug of mucus a bout the size of a cotton ball. Your care provider may suggest a bio-physical profile to assess your little one' s health or a non-stress or stress test to determine her reaction to her environ ment. if you notice its passing at all.