Pregnancy Week by Week Information
Given that it is difficult to determine exactly when conception takes place, medical experts start calculating pregnancy week by week starting from the last menstrual period of a woman. In other words, your first week of pregnancy is traced to the week you hard your last period. Consequently, the gestational age of your baby is normally two week ahead of the real age. So, most pregnancy week by week guides start from the first, second and third weeks before and during ovulation when the body prepares for conception via the action of reproductive hormones, namely, oestrogen and progesterone. Conception occurs at the third week when a sperm fertilises the ovum in the fallopian tube.
The fertilised egg is at this early stage called the zygote. Cell division starts to occur to ensure the growth of the zygote which is moved to the womb or uterus during implantation. You may not notice that you were pregnant during the early weeks, though some women claim to know the time when they become pregnant. However, you will come to know that you are pregnant through certain signs and symptoms you experienced. They arise as a result of hormonal changes in the body. You will find a number of these signs and symptoms in a number of pregnancy week by week guides available in the internet. But you may not experience all the signs at the same time.
Cell division continued in the fourth week. The zygote has developed into embryo and various organs and tissues will start to develop through cell division. Though, you are not looking pregnant during this period but, if you take a home pregnancy test, it will show that you are pregnant. You may start your antenatal care at this stage.
During the 5th week of your pregnancy, no visible sign of pregnancy has started manifesting in your body. But your growing baby has already gotten a functional heart beating and pumping blood. Most pregnancy week by week information points out that 5 week is a period of fast growth for the embryo. All the major organs of the body including the kidney and liver will develop during this period. The embryo also witnesses some major internal changes during this week of your pregnancy. The bud that eventually develops into arms and legs of your baby will spring forth.
As the baby develops in your womb, you will start noticing some visible signs of pregnancy in yourself. Week six of your pregnancy week by week stages is the time of occasional mood changes. You may feel happy in one minute and then moody in the other minute. This is normal and there is nothing to worry about it. The changes in mood are caused by hormonal fluctuation or increase in the level of hormones.
The 7 and 8 week in your pregnancy week by week stages, you will experience a lot of changes in your body causing you some pains. These weeks are the throes of the first trimester. During this period early symptoms of pregnancy begins to manifest. Some of the common symptoms experienced by most pregnant women during this period are pains and aches, morning sickness, nausea and vomiting, frequent urination as the growing baby is pressing hard on the bladder and others. However, some of these symptoms may fizzle out or reduce as you continue pregnancy week by week journey. Engaging in some exercise will help to reduce the pains of pregnancy during this period.
During the 8 week, your figure will start to change and you will begin to look pregnant. You may notice that your cup size of bra will increase. This is because your breast will start to enlarge in preparation for breastfeeding. Your waistline will start to increase as well.
By the 9th week in your pregnancy week by week stages, your baby should have a length of 2.3cm. The weight should be 2g or above. The ear lobes are now recognisable while the eyelids will now fused to eyes and will cover it till the 26th week of your pregnancy week by week stages. The genital will begin to develop during this period, even though the actual gender of the baby cannot be told with certainty by ultrasound. The placenta has now developed and is doing most of the functions of the producing hormones. The making of the nutrients of the baby has now taken over by the placenta. This is the time to have your first antenatal hospital visit. Your doctor will check your vital signs and then take samples of blood for series of tests.
The foetal development in pregnancy week by week stages
The embryo is referred to as the foetus during the 10 week of your pregnancy week by week stages. The foetus which means offspring is a 3.1cm in length during this week. The weight should not be less than 4g by now. The vital organs have been fully formed and become active. The head remains larger than other parts of the body during this week. The uterus will become enlarged as well. You may also feel it.
In the eleventh week of your pregnancy week by week stage, the reflexes of your baby is becoming perfected. The foetus will make some move or shift if you prod your belly. However, you will not be noticing the movement of your baby. As the foetal nerve cells multiple, the formation of neurological connection in the brain will start. The baby can now curl her toes, close her fingers and clench the muscles of her eye.
As you end the first trimester of your pregnancy in week 12, the fundus which is the top of the uterus will be felt by your midwife or doctor. You will look pregnant by now. You should start wearing loose clothe. It is also not too early to start pelvic floor exercise. You may begin to regain your appetite and the morning sickness will no longer be frequent.
Second trimester of pregnancy
The second trimester of your pregnancy week by week stages starts in week 13 and will last for the next three months. The baby is not 8cm and should weigh not less than 40g. The body will start to develop faster than the head, hairs will start growing on the head and eyebrows are coming out. By this period in your pregnancy week by week stages, your doctor should have recommended two ultrasound scans for you. They are dating scan and nuchal translucency scan.
As your baby is gaining weight, you are also gaining weight. You have added about 2.2kg weight during your 14 week of pregnancy. This is the right time to begin exercise. The head will become more erect during the 16th week. By the 17th week in your second trimester, your baby should weigh about 140g. The skeleton has not hardened by this time but it will still become hardened with time. By the 18th week, your baby should be about 12cm long weighing about 190g. You may go for anomaly scan aimed at evaluating the growth and development of the baby and also to find out whether the gestational stage is correct. It is no longer safe for you to lie down on your belly. You should be lying down on your back or by the side.
During the 19th week, the baby’s digestive system is becoming more active and so the baby will be eating more. So, you have to eat well because you are feeding for two people. Take vitamins supplements and food rich in iron and other minerals. By the twentieth week, the baby should be about 27cm long and weighs about 350g. You are becoming used to pregnancy during this period. The initial pains and aches are now easing off.
The baby is becoming heavier and long every week. By the end of 24 week, your baby should be up 30cm long and weigh above 600g. This period in your pregnancy week by week stage, you will start to notice stretch mark on your belly, breast and hips.
Some of the symptoms associated with the second trimester of pregnancy include growing belly, larger breasts, weight gain and skin changes. Your baby will have the ability to hear and move during this period.
This is the last four months of your pregnancy. These months in your pregnancy week by week stages can be very tough emotionally and physically. By the 25 week, your baby should be measuring around 36cm with a weight of not less than 760g. The baby will respond more soundly to sound and the eyes will begin to open. The development of the brain becomes stronger since the baby is growing faster. The development of the baby will continue weekly until the last week of your pregnancy week by week stage which is the 38 weeks for most women. However, there are some women who may still not deliver even at the 39 weeks. There is no cause for alarm. The baby will still come out. At the 38 weeks, the baby should be around 50cm long with a weight of 3kg. All the organs of the body should have been fully developed by this week.
Here are some of the symptoms associated with the third trimester:
- Mounting anxiety
- Swollen ankles
For the growing baby, by this period, the baby can open his or her eyes. The foetal movements may be more pronounced at this stage because of rapid growth. The baby is now fully grown waiting to be delivered.
This is the time to start preparing for childbirth hospital visit. However, as you prepare for childbirth, you have to remain in contact with your doctor in order to ensure that everything is in order.