Your Guide To The Trimesters Of Pregnancy
Pregnancy is one of the most exciting times in anyone’s life. Here’s what you can expect during the next 9 months, trimester by trimester.
The First Trimester 1-12 Weeks
The classic first sign of a pregnancy is the missed period, although you may still have some symptoms of PMS regardless of this. Eating frequent and small meals can help ease these symptoms, and 400mcg of folic acid is recommended from this point onward. Cutting down on caffeine is recommended, as well as quitting smoking and drinking. The dreaded morning sickness usually subsides after the first few weeks. At 12-13 weeks you will have your first antenatal appointment, after which you’ll be given an estimated due date. Ensure you ask medical professionals any questions you have about medicines you are taking during your pregnancy.
Your little bundle will develop to about 9cm during this time, and will be beginning to develop eyes, fingers, ears, vital organs, toes and genitals.
The Second Trimester 13-27 Weeks
In most cases, your fatigue and nausea will subside at this stage of your pregnancy. You will be able to feel your baby’s movements by the end of this trimester, and your bump will begin to expand. Your breasts will grow and your blood vessels will dilate in response to pregnancy hormones. This might cause dizzy spells, so it’s best to keep hydrated and get up slowly after sitting or lying down. Exercising gently and regularly and keeping a healthy diet up is vital at this point. You may be given another scan at this stage called an anomaly scan, and will usually have monthly appointments during this time.
Your baby’s major organs are all formed and a fine hair called lanugo will cover her body. She’ll develop a sleeping pattern and her bones will begin to harden. She’ll be around 33cm long and weigh up to 2lbs.
The Third Trimester 28 Weeks - Birth
This is around the time many expectant mothers will experience backache due to their growing bumps. A good night’s sleep might become harder to achieve due to general discomfort and needing to use the loo. Your doctor may give you a vaginal exam to check your progress, and Braxton-Hicks contractions may occur. Once you’re 28 weeks pregnant you may be seeing a doctor or midwife fortnightly, switching it up to weekly at 36 weeks. Packing that hospital bag should be a priority as well as finalising your birth preferences. Get as much rest as possible.
Your baby will seem less active as she gets into position for birth, and she’ll start to get fatter during the third trimester. The average weight for a newborn is 7lbs and she’ll probably be around 50cm long.
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