Pregnancy is a one-of-its kind experience. As you step into this new beginning, learn what awaits you and your baby in the next 40-42 weeks.
Last Updated: Oct 22, 2020 11:29 GMT
From a single cell to tiny body and limbs, your baby begins to grow rapidly in your womb during the first trimester. Strangely, in the first few weeks of your first trimester, you might not be aware that you are pregnant. Yet, there is much adventure happening inside you. Here’s the first trimester pregnancy week by week guide:Week 1
If you become pregnant, this would be your first week of pregnancy. But if you want to know what’s happening to your baby inside, you’ll be surprised to hear that your baby isn’t even formed yet. Yes, your pregnancy theoretically begins on the first day of your last period even though you are not physiologically pregnant yet.Week 2
Now could be the beginning of your beautiful journey. You’ll ovulate this week and if a sperm manages to successfully reach your ovum, you’ll get pregnant. You may want to check an ovulation calculator to know exactly when your fertile days are.Week 3
If all went well last week, congratulations, you are pregnant! The single cell (zygote) that had formed after the sperm fertilized ovum, has now undergone cell divisions to become what is called a blastocyst. It is a ball of a few hundred cells which is busy growing tremendously.
Most likely, you’ll have no idea at this stage about your pregnancy unless you have been closely following the early pregnancy signs.
The implanted embryo has put your pregnancy hormones in action now and you might begin to experience a few of the common pregnancy symptoms such as sore breasts, fatigue, frequent urination and nausea.Week 6
The home pregnancy test shows a positive band now and yes, at last the good news is here! You are just beginning to feel pregnant but believe it or not, your baby’s facial features are already getting sculpted now.Week 7
Your uterus is now double of what it was at week 3. If you are one of those expectant mothers who experience morning sickness, trouble starts now. It is a good time to fix a prenatal appointment with your OB. You’ll be advised to take a pregnancy blood test or urine test for a confirmation from a laboratory and it could take another week for your first pregnancy scan. In the meantime, if you are anxious to know when your baby is due, check with a due date calculator.Week 8
Your OB may schedule an early pregnancy ultrasound scan this week. 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.
Your baby is now promoted to a fetus stage from an embryo, weighing heavier than earlier though not big enough to reveal a bump in you. You might wonder how two months of your pregnancy has passed so quickly, although nausea and vomiting doesn’t seem to subside yet.
The blueprint of your baby’s organs is laid out by now and you can expect a rapid growth of your baby and your body in the next few months. Your breasts are enlarging, preparing your mammary glands for lactation. Your hips and waist can also see a change in shape as your uterus continues to bulge bigger.
Several body organs are undergoing growth spurts inside your tiny baby. You can feel your food cravings and aversions take strange tastes as you try to visualize different kinds of foods to figure out what your taste buds are up to.Week 12
If you’ve checked yourself in the mirror all these while for signs of your growing baby, here it might come – the baby bump! Just a week away for your second trimester to begin, the queasiness may seem to leave you slowly, while for some pregnant mothers, it can well last through the middle of the second or third trimesters as well.
This is the last week of your first trimester, that is, you’ve already traveled through 1/3 rd of your pregnancy. Isn’t that incredible?! From the beginning of next week, you may start to feel better, in terms of energy and moods.Second Trimester: Weeks 14 to 27
While the first trimester began with the disbelief of carrying a life inside, with the start of the second trimester, you begin to sync well with your pregnancy. As the morning sickness eases away, you are energetic, more than ever, you are hungry more than ever and you eat, more than ever now. This phase is often referred to as the ‘honeymoon’ period of pregnancy as you aren’t as sick as you were in your first trimester and you wouldn’t be as heavier as you are going to be in the next trimester. Learn what happens in your pregnancy week by week during the second trimester.Week 14
Your baby has doubled in weight from what he or she was last week. Pregnancy feels more exciting now than it was in the last few weeks. Not only is your appetite expanding but also your taste buds are getting more kind to you in letting you grab food without being choosy.Week 15
Your baby is more like a baby now, wriggling and squirming inside all day. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself awesome in the bedroom at this point. If pregnancy had brought in a drift between you and your partner, now is the time to catch up the gap. Increased sex drive is a natural instinct at this stage as your hormones change their game plays in your body.Week 16
If you haven’t, you must begin talking to your little human. Your baby can listen to voices around now and his or her eyesight is at a rapid stage of development. Between 15 to 20 weeks, your OB might schedule diagnostic tests. A multiple marker screening, popularly called as Triple screen test, is to check for any neural tube defects. If you opt for, amniocentesis may be scheduled to detect the chances of chromosomal abnormalities in the baby.Week 17
Feeling your baby move is one of the most exciting moments of pregnancy and by now your little football champion is getting better at his kicks. He is also trying to figure out how sucking and swallowing works as he prepares for his feeding once out of mama’s tummy. Be aware that strange dreams can be common for the mom-to-be at this time and could sign you to get easy about your pregnancy and childbirth anxieties.Week 18
Your baby is busy trying a ton of activities inside and your belly is rapidly getting bigger. You might want to learn about stretch marks and begin using a skin cream if you don’t want to retain them post childbirth.Week 19
Are you having a boy or a girl? An ultrasound scan at this time can reveal that secret to you, whoa! You can now make plans for a blue or pink baby shower and perhaps, arrange for a pregnancy photo shoot. If you spot your feet swollen one morning, relax. It’s common and may persist until your labor day.Week 20
You are halfway through your pregnancy! Now that peace sets in after the storms of nausea, pat yourself, mama, you are heading to an awesome motherhood! Your baby’s organs are fast developing and your OB might do a 20-week ultrasound to study your baby’s development in detail.Week 21
Will you be surprised to know that your baby is drinking a few ounces of amniotic fluid every day now? He or she is also busy processing meconium, the first poo.Week 22
Your baby’s features are getting closer to how he or she would appear at birth. Due to increased melanin secretion, you might find dark patches around your face and neck. It’s only a pregnancy thing and be rest assured that once the baby is out, you’ll get back your skin in its old form.Week 23
If you closely follow your baby’s movements now, you can identify her sleep-wake routine. She might be actively kicking you during a particular time of the day. She might be quietly taking a nap at other times. She might also respond to outside sound and touch stimuli. She might jerk when the dog barks or slither inside when sun rays directly fall on the belly.Week 24
Ding! Week 24 rings the bell for the glucose tolerance test. Even if you craved for sweets all along, this over dose of sweetness is definitely going to be yucky. But this is what can tell your OB if you are at risk for gestational diabetes or not.
Week 25 Your baby’s baby fat is building up now and so is your baby’s hair. To your strange surprise, your hair is also lustrous than ever before. You cannot see the shedding of a single hair now. Yeah, along with your protruding bump, your hair becomes a thing of your pride as well.
Your baby is breathing now. But if you think he or she is breathing air, you are wrong. He or she is doing the breathing trials with amniotic fluid instead. By this time you must have noticed how funny your belly looks with an inside-out turned belly button.Week 27
Your baby’s brain and eyes are undergoing active development now. You might experience leg cramps and feet swelling which are likely to last until childbirth. As you complete your second trimester this week, you might feel getting heavier than ever before. Hold on, the heavier you feel, the closer you are to meet your baby!Third Trimester: Weeks 28 to 42
You’ve already undergone a huge metamorphosis by now and all that you want to happen as the third-trimester sets in is holding your baby in your arms. The good news is that you are not too far as you have just one-third of your pregnancy left. Read below what else awaits your pregnancy with the third trimester pregnancy week by week guide:Week 28
Your baby’s eyelashes are grown now and she may flutter them too. Your visits to the doctor may get more frequent now, like once every two weeks. With a big belly, sleeping discomforts can be common but that is how nature prepares you for the coming sleepless nights once the baby is there.Week 29
Your OB may now advise you to do kick counts. As long as you can feel your baby’s kicks 10 times in around two hours, he or she is doing fine inside. If you notice a sharp drop or no movements at all, it is an alarm to visit your doctor immediately.Week 30
The anxiety toward labor may begin to crawl through your mind now. You may also experience intermittent Braxton Hicks which signs that your body is preparing for the upcoming D-day. At this time, you shouldn’t get more than four contractions in an hour. If at all it happens, contact your OB for you may be going into labor prematurely.Week 31
Your rapidly growing baby finds less room inside your womb and she may stretch, wriggle and kick a lot than ever. You may also find it tight and hard on your belly. Bending, lying down, walking – many of your everyday movements can feel restricted.
Week 32 Braxton Hicks are stronger and quite frequent now. Most babies at this stage drop in the womb with the head turned down. Now that you carry the baby low, the shortness of breath which has bothered you may ease up. However, it is still normal if your baby doesn’t decide to drop down until labor.
Believe it or not, your baby can actually open and close his eyes now. Her brain is continuing to grow and her immune system is steadily developing. She may practice to master her lung function by coordinating her breathing with sucking and swallowing.
Week 34 Meconium (your baby’s first poo) is already there inside her intestines and is not going to get out until he or she’s out. Remember it is going to be greenish black in color; so don’t get alarmed when you see your baby passing out something terrible the day he or she’s born.
There’s too much pressure to your bladder from above now and you can’t help yourself from frequent loo visits. Not to mention, the aches your body experiences are getting new and varied. Braxton Hicks can continue to get frequent.
Week 36 By now, your childbirth classes must be over, your hospital bag is packed and you are much into nesting. There wouldn’t be much expansion or putting on weight in the coming weeks and your belly size is getting almost static.
You will visit your OB every week from now on. The mucus plug which protected your cervix may now get released in preparation for labor. Cervix begins to dilate and it will continue to in the next few weeks. From now you must keep a check on whether you are getting Braxton contractions or going into labor though you are less likely to go into labor now.Week 38
Except for the lungs and brain, most of your baby’s organs are almost developed. His lungs continue to mature and he might begin to shed vernix and lanugo, the white stuff off his body. You feel you’ve carried your baby for too long now and it’s almost time to take him or her out. You may be right but just hold on to wait for the last couple of weeks.Week 39
All that is important now is to closely deal with your contractions. When they last more than 30 seconds and are five minutes apart, it is time to call your doctor. Water breaking can also be a sign of you going into labor soon.
Week 40 Ting-tong! You reach your official due date this week. If you already delivered your baby, congratulations mama, you made it! If you are still awaiting labor, relax, you are very close.
You are past your due date but the baby isn’t out yet. Yes, it is a terrible feeling but as long as your doctor finds you and your baby in pink health, stay restful, your baby can decide to push out anytime now.Week 42
Your frustration may overpower you now. But the good news is that if you are not going into natural labor, your doctor may decide to induce. In either case, you are certain to meet your much-awaited bundle at last.
It was an adventure, yet a warm one, wasn’t it? If you thought your adventure got over with pregnancy, common mama, it is actually the beginning. Welcome to motherhood! Now remember to bookmark this pregnancy week by week guide to check out for your next pregnancy. Why, your little one is sure to wipe the memories of your pregnant days and refill them with her cute little infant and toddler moments!