Stages of Pregnancy, Week by Week
Pregnancy is a journey taken in small steps. In this article we’ll tell you about your baby’s growth during the different stages of pregnancy, and some of the symptoms that you may experience during this special time.
The day has come to put all your doubts to rest, and you have butterflies in your stomach. Deep down, you already know that the long-awaited news is positive. You are pregnant! How exciting!
This is one of those days that you’ll never forget, and one that without a doubt will change your life forever.
Week by week, you will have different experiences and sensations. You should enjoy these as much as possible: remember, there are no repeats.
Every baby is unique and no pregnancy is exactly the same as the one before.
We often do a pregnancy test as soon as we realize that more than a month has gone by since our last period. A skipped period is our way of knowing whether we are pregnant or not.
Pregnancy is considered to be to term at nine months or forty weeks, so if you get a positive result after a missed period, your baby has already been gestating for up to four weeks.
To help you find out more about what you will experience in these nine months, we will look at some of the most important aspects that characterize each trimester, and what you should know about the different stages of pregnancy.
The first trimester of pregnancy
Begins in week 1 and ends in week 12
- The placenta begins to grow. This is vital for the development of the fetus, allowing it to receive nutrients from the food that you consume. Oxygen is also supplied to the baby through the placenta. Similarly, the amniotic sac also grows. This is the place where the baby will float throughout your pregnancy.
- Morning sickness
- Cravings or feelings of disgust for certain foods
- Constant desire to urinate
Perhaps you’ll be one of the lucky ones that doesn’t experience any of these symptoms.
Second trimester of pregnancy
This covers the 13th to 26th week of pregnancy.
- During this period, the baby will continue to grow and develop every day. At the beginning of this trimester, the baby will be approximately three inches (7.62 cm) long.
- The baby may begin moving before or after the 20th week of pregnancy. This is one of the most fascinating and enjoyable parts of pregnancy.
- After the 18th week, your baby can hear the sound of your voice. This is the time to talk to them, tell them how much you love them and are looking forward to finally meeting them.
- Their eyes begin to open. However, they can’t see anything until the beginning of the third trimester.
- You will start to notice your abdomen expanding.
- Your morning sickness and nausea will start to subside or even disappear.
- The baby‘s movements will become more frequent. You will have a lot of fun trying to guess which part of the baby’s body is moving around in there!
- You will feel increasingly thirsty. It’s good to drink 2 to 3 liters of water a day.
- You may experience swelling in your legs.
Third trimester of pregnancy
This begins in the 27th week, and ends when your baby is born.
- All parts of their body and organs are fully formed, but they continue to grow and mature.
- The baby will begin to experience the world through their senses of touch and hearing. They already recognize your voice, and may move in response to it. Perhaps they know who mom and dad are, even while still in the womb.
- They are moving all the time. They may stretch, kick and turn over. You will feel their movements more intensely, as your intrauterine space is shrinking all the time.
- Their eyes can only see the brightest lights, as they are still accustomed to the dark.
- Your breasts will grow even bigger. You may notice a yellowish liquid leaking from your nipples: don’t worry, this is called colostrum and will be your baby’s food during the first few days of their life.
- At this stage, you will feel contractions in your lower abdomen. Don’t be concerned, these are completely normal. Consult your doctor immediately if they are very frequent and painful.
- Your vaginal discharge will increase considerably.
- You will experience back pain, due to the increased weight of your baby and your own body.
One of the most wonderful adventures that we can experience is creating new life and bringing a baby into the world.
Make sure to be conscious of this blessing every day, every second and throughout all the stages of pregnancy.