From the time you see those pink lines on your pregnancy test until the time you get to hold your baby in your arms, a lot goes around within you and your baby. Read on to know the incredible changes and developments that happen during pregnancy month by month.
Last Updated: Oct 22, 2020 11:29 GMT
Your pregnancy theoretically begins on the first day of your last menstrual period even though you will not be physiologically pregnant for the first two weeks of the first month of your pregnancy.What’s happening to you?
It’s only when ovulation, the release of egg, happens in the second week, your partner’s sperm fertilizes your egg leading to pregnancy. Congratulations! You are pregnant and it might take two weeks after conception to detect your pregnancy. You may be able to read the early signs of pregnancy including:
· Nasal congestion
· Breast tenderness
· Mild abdominal cramping
· Food aversion
· Frequent urinationWhat’s happening to your baby?
Your baby in her embryo form implants into your uterine lining, laying the foundation for her cozy womb to live and grow in the coming months. Implantation connects your baby with the blood vessels on your uterine wall. The neural tube which will evolve to your baby’s brain and spinal cord is already established. Amniotic sac, the protective covering, and amniotic fluid, the cushion system for your growing baby, are also formed this month.What should you do this month?
There isn’t much you are expected to do now other than eating healthy and sleeping well in order to support your pregnant body. In the first month of your pregnancy, you must have:
· Decided on your OB
· Bought a pregnancy test kit
· Began taking prenatal vitaminsMonth 2 (Weeks 5-8)
Your OB may schedule an early pregnancy ultrasound scan this month. Get ready, the thrilling moment of listening to your baby’s heart beat for the first time is just around the corner! And you will also get to know the exact gestational age of your baby and baby’s estimated due date (EDD) after the scan.What’s happening to you?
Morning sickness that pregnancy brought along in your life is getting no better. Having food might seem a difficult task until your baby is out. Your breasts begin to feel different at this stage owing to the development of tiny globules in your breasts which are bestowed to make your baby’s feed.What’s happening to your baby?
The tiny features on her face are getting more defined contours now. Her eyelids and upper lips are forming for the first time and the tip of her nose is almost visible now. Her tail which made her look like a tadpole is retracting, leaving behind the tailbone. Her webbed fingers and toes are beginning to form ridges in-between them and will soon take their individual shapes and sizes. Unbelievably, she is already moving inside your belly, though you might not feel her movements yet. The cells in her brain, in addition to growing exponentially, are forming neuronal connections between them setting up the early neural pathways.What should you do this month?
· Eat smaller, healthy meals
· Shop some large size bras
· Note down your baby’s estimated due dateMonth 3 (Weeks 9-13)
The completion of three months of pregnancy also marks the completion of the first trimester. It is when morning sickness begins to get better.What’s happening to you?
As your second trimester is about to begin, the queasiness may seem to leave you slowly. That single-most prestigious possession of your pregnancy which you’ll carry around for the next seven months – the bump – is beginning to show up now. Headaches, dizzy spells and bleeding gums can be common now.What’s happening to your baby?
Your baby is now promoted to a fetus stage from an embryo. Almost all her organ systems are formed by this month. Her intestines are getting their form completed and are moving to their destined position in her body. And all of the eggs that her ovaries would accommodate in her lifetime, which is over two million in number, are already developed.What should you do this month?
Kegel exercises are one of the most recommended exercises during pregnancy. With your uterus exerting pressure on your lower abdomen, you may begin to experience urinary incontinence. That is, even with the slightest cough or sneeze, you may feel uncontrollable leaking of urine before you can hold up to the restroom. Kegels can help to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles.Month 4 (Weeks 14-17)
This month, you will feel butterflies in your tummy more than once, twice and thrice and whoa, at last pregnancy feels real!What’s happening to you?
Your body is undergoing constant changes in shape and size. Your belly is bulging out, your breasts are getting bigger and your nose may be swelling. And the big news is that you are gaining weight. And here is more to look for in the fourth month:
· You are glowing than ever before
· You are beginning to feel baby movements
· Your hair is thick and healthy
· You may begin to see strange dreams
· You may suffer from pregnancy brainWhat’s happening to your baby?
Your baby is busy honing her skills of sucking and swallowing this month. Her bones which were more like soft cartilages are hardening to become true bony structures. Her limbs are getting nearly proportionate to his head size this month.What should you do this month?
Triple screen test: Between weeks 15 and 20, your OB might ask you if you would want to go for the triple screen test. This screening test is an important prenatal test which tests for genetic defects and neural tube defects.
Watch your weight: An additional 300 calories (600 calories if you are carrying twins) per day is what you need now. And it does not require too much eating. The recommended weight gain in the first trimester is 1-4.4 lb and 1 lb per week in the second and third trimesters. In the case of twins, the recommended gestational weight gain is 37-54 lb.Month 5 (Weeks 18-22)
Are you having a boy or a girl? An ultrasound scan at this month can reveal that secret to you, yay!What’s happening to you?
You are bound to continue experiencing the rest of your second trimester symptoms – heartburn, indigestion, bloating, constipation, leg cramps, feet swelling, difficulty sleeping, stretch marks forming and varicose veins.What’s happening to your baby?
Your baby’s eyes are completely formed this month though her eyelids will still remain closed until the next month. The nerve connections that are responsible for her to feel touch stimuli are also formed.What should you do this month?
Plan for a baby registry, bump fund and baby shower. And don’t forget the baby names!Month 6 (Weeks 23-27)
This month your pregnancy reaches the viable pregnancy age, that is, if a baby was to be born prematurely at this stage, she can be supported by a neonatal intensive care unit.What’s happening to you?
Many women begin to feel light cramps in the abdomen around this month. These are called Braxton Hicks contractions and will continue on and off until labor sets in. Your uterus is growing bigger. It reaches around 2 inches above your navel this month. You may be experiencing leg cramps, restless legs syndrome and peeing while sneezing in addition to the other symptoms.What’s happening to your baby?
Rapid growth, maturation and expansion of your baby’s respiratory system begin this month and shall continue until birth. She is practicing breathing amniotic fluid. This practice is truly important to her to begin breathing air when she's born.What should you do this month?
· Schedule your glucose screening test
· Register for a prenatal classMonth 7 (Weeks 28-31)
Third trimester begins with the seventh month of pregnancy. It is said to be a phase of increased weight and tiredness.What’s happening to you?
Now that your baby has started to move all around in the womb, you may often find your baby kicking at your ribs, which sometimes could be mildly painful. Your breasts are producing breast milk and in some women, it may start to leak through the nipples. TheWhat’s happening to your baby?
Your little sweet’s eyelids are opening this month. If you are carrying a boy, his testicles are having a fun ride down his pelvis. Soon it will reach its destination at the scrotum.What should you do this month?
· Beginning this month, your OB might ask you to start kick counts.
· Make a list of things-to-do, things-to-buy and things-to-arrange at home.
· Find a babysitter if you need one
· Check your insurance
· Plan your maternity leave (and paternity leave for the father as well)
· Pack your hospital bag
· NestMonth 8 (Weeks 32-35)
Amidst the tiredness and changes in your body, you will begin to anxiously look for labor signs from this month on.What’s happening to you?
· You can feel the kicks and turns more intensely, closer and stronger than before.
· You may be getting increasingly tired. A little exercise, good nutrition and frequent rest must take you to the labor day in good spirits.
· Your body has to balance the shift in the centre of gravity and the extra load. Your gait has long changed to something which isn’t yours.
· But with the baby dropping down in the pelvis, there is additional pressure to your bladder. And you may get constantly troubled by frequent peeing trips.What’s happening to your baby?
Some babies might turn over with their heads downward into the pelvic inlet this month, towards the cervix, a process called as fetal engagement. Your baby is beginning this month to develop immune system. From now until birth, antibodies are passed from mother to the baby through the placenta. Your baby’s first poo, called meconium, is already collected inside her intestines. Babies usually release meconium soon after birth.What should you do this month?
· If you choose to breastfeed your baby, consider a breastfeeding class now
· Get a couple of feeding bras which you might need at the hospital.Month 9 (Weeks 36-40)
By now, your childbirth classes must be over, your hospital bag is packed and you are much into nesting. Hold on Mommy! You are almost there!What’s happening to you?
The mucus plug which protected your cervix may get released in preparation for labor. Cervix begins to dilate and it will continue to through labor. Braxton Hicks continue to get stronger and frequent. Like how your belly button turned inside out, this month, your nipples might appear popped out too.What’s happening to your baby?
She has almost reached her baby form from a fetus. Vernix, the whitish waxy substance on her skin and the downy hair are already shed off into the amniotic fluid. Your baby is taking loads of practice at sucking his thumb. This is going to help her to latch on your breasts for her first feed soon.What should you do this month?
· Stock up your kitchen
· Revise your prenatal classes
· Remember, sex is still permissible