Stages of pregnancy

9 months, 40 weeks, 280 days. Although every pregnancy is a unique experience, each month of pregnancy has its own special features that allow us to easily differentiate them. Read on and find out the changes that occur in the body of the mother and the baby.

Pregnancy timeline

Week by week

  • 1
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    First month

    As it is difficult to determine the exact moment of fertilization, doctors usually recommend to start counting from the last day you had your period.

  • 2
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    Second month

    The zygote becomes embryo. At this stage it is advisable to eat a variety of foods rich in folic acid to avoid birth defects, and to keep well hydrated.

  • 3
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    Third month

    You can have your first ultrasound done now to find out more about your baby’s progress.

  • 4
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    Fourth month

    The embryo becomes a foetus. And at this stage you can find out if it’s a boy or a girl!

  • 5
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    Fifth month

    The most pleasant stage of pregnancy. The baby is already beginning to sleep and wake, and growing very fast now.

  • 6
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    Sixth month

    During this month you could experience heartburn; eating 4 to 5 light meals throughout the day can help prevent them.

  • 7
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    Seventh month

    You can now have the third-trimester ultrasound, whose main objective is to evaluate the position and correct growth of the foetus.

  • 8
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    Eighth month

    Your uterus reaches its maximum size at this time, and you may require more tender, love and care than ever before. The good news is that you will soon be holding your baby in your arms!

  • 9
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    Ninth month

    During the last weeks the baby will increase considerably in weight. Remember that most pregnancies do not end at 40 weeks, they can last less or a bit longer.

A wonderful experience begins.
Your biggest challenge as a mother at this point is to enjoy your pregnancy and, of course, do all you can to ensure your baby is born healthy. Remember not to smoke, drink alcohol or eat raw meat 馃檪

Month 1

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Changes in your body

  • Possible nausea and fatigue
  • Swelling of breasts
  • Heightened sense of smell
  • Possible cravings
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Changes of the baby

  • The ovule begins to divide
  • Blastocyst formation begins 4 days after fertilization
  • The ovule descends the fallopian tubes and reaches the uterus
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Changes in your body

  • The blood volume increases by 50% to deliver oxygen to the foetus
  • The placenta begins to form
  • Increase in estrogen levels
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Changes of the baby

  • The embryo develops
  • The ears and ocular cavities take shape, as well as the neural tube
  • The sex of the baby is determined
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Changes in your body

  • Breast tenderness
  • Frequent urination
  • Headaches

 

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Changes of the baby

  • The tiny heart begins to beat
  • Begins to take oxygen and nutrients from the mother’s blood
  • The physical and intellectual characteristics are determined
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Changes in your body

  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue, feeling tired more than usual
  • Morning sickness
  • Enhanced sense of smell
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a poppy seed
  • The heart beats faster
  • Early phase of development of the nervous system, the heart and the skeleton
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At this point you may begin to realize that you are pregnant. It’s time to take the pregnancy test and find out for sure!

Month 2

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Changes in your body

  • Morning sickness
  • Swelling of breasts
  • Hip and pelvic pain
  • First cravings
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of an apple seed
  • The heart is already pumping blood
  • The amniotic sac surrounds the baby until birt
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Changes in your body

  • Nasal congestion
  • Constipation
  • Increased saliva
  • Frequent urination
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a lentil (5-6 mm)
  • The vocal cords develop
  • Arms and legs take shape
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Avoid drinking coffee and exposing yourself to x-rays.

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Changes in your body

  • Some women see their symptoms improve
  • Mood swings
  • Slow transit constipation
  • Slight weight gain
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a blueberry (12 mm)
  • The umbilical cord widens

 

 

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This is the best time to make the first visit to the doctor or midwife!

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Changes in your body

  • The uterus increases in size, so you might notice slight discomfort
  • Pelvic pain
  • Frequent urination
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a raspberry (20 mm and 1 gram)
  • The embryo already has eyelids and an upper lip!
  • First involuntary movements

Third month

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Changes of the baby

  • Dizziness caused by low blood pressure
  • Possible nausea
  • Fatigue
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Changes in your body

  • Size of a cherry (30 mm and 2 grams)
  • The embryo becomes a foetus
  • The arms and legs take shape
  • The feet and hands appear
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Consider visiting a geneticist if you are over 35 years old.

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Changes in your body

  • You will notice a slight increase in weight
  • Larger breasts
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a strawberry (35 mm and 5 grams)
  • The intestines are now in place
  • Nails start to grow
  • Sex organs are developing
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Remember to write down your physical and emotional changes so that you can discuss them on your next visit to the doctor.
This week, you will probably have to have an abdominal scan and urine tests to check that everything is okay.

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Changes in your body

  • Morning sickness disappears
  • Increased breathing rate
  • You might produce more saliva, but there is no need to worry
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a lime (60 mm and 9 grams)
  • Bones begin to harden
  • Begins to kick
  • If he’s a boy, he will already be producing testosterone
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This is a quieter period. Enjoy it!

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Cambios de la mujer

  • Tu piel empieza a estar m谩s suave y desprende un brillo radiante
  • Empiezan a desaparecer las n谩useas
  • Posibles ardores en el est贸mago
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a plum (70 mm and 14 grams)
  • Vocal chords begin to develop
  • Hair begins to grow (lanugo)
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Avoid eating fatty or fried foods to avoid heartburn.
From this week on you will begin to hear the heartbeat. This is the perfect time to get your 12- week ultrasound!

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Changes in your body

  • The waist widens
  • Increased vaginal discharge
  • Heightened sense of smell
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a lemon (80 mm and 17 grams)
  • The 27 bones of the hand develop
  • The eyes and ears move slowly until they settle into their final position
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Follow a diet rich in vitamins, and exercise to stay healthy and provide your future baby with everything he or she needs.

Month 4

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Changes in your body

  • You might notice your gums feel more sensitive
  • Your nose and gums are more likely to bleed
  • You may start producing a pre-milk discharge called colostrum from your nipples
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of a peach (90 mm and 25 grams)
  • First head moves
  • Their head now sits upon a distinct neck
  • They start sucking their finger
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This is a good time to take a multiple marker screening test. Check with your doctor to book an appointment.
This is a good time to have an amniocentesis test if you are over 35 years old or if there is a history of birth defects in your family.

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Changes in your body

  • Hair growth
  • New moles might appear
  • The linea nigra appears (a dark vertical line between your belly button and pubic area)
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Changes of the baby

  • Size of an orange (10 cm and 50 grams)
  • Begin to exercise their muscles
  • Hair grows on eyebrows and head
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If you didn’t have a combined first trimester screening, you can still get a second trimester screening done.

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Changes in your body

  • Possible pain in the uterus, as it continues to grow in size
  • You will begin to feel better since the hormones have normalized
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of an avocado (11 cm and 80 grams)
  • The head begins to even out with its body
  • The brain takes control of its movements
  • The baby now responds to stimuli
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Your doctor might recommend you take a blood test (also known as the “triple test”)

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Changes in your body

  • Your breasts prepare for breastfeeding
  • Your breasts will start to grow
  • Possible occasional haemorrhoids
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a pomegranate (12 cm and 100 grams)
  • A greasy substance (vernix) covers the foetus to protect its skin
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Eat food high in fibre to prevent haemorrhoids.

Month 5

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Changes in your body

  • Nausea and fatigue disappear
  • Breasts and belly increase in size
  • Varicose veins develop
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of an artichoke (13 cm and 150 grams)
  • First yawns
  • Begins to kick harder
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We recommend taking a second ultrasound to examine the baby’s anatomy and growth rate.

To prevent varicose veins, avoid standing for long periods.

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Changes in your body

  • You will notice an increase in your heart rate that can cause tachycardia
  • Possible increase in vaginal discharge that may take on a blue or purple colour (it’s perfectly normal!)
  • Spots may appear on the skin
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a mango (14 cm and 200 grams)
  • Sleeps for longer periods and wakes up with more energy (you will notice more movement)
  • The heartbeat can now be heard
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From this week on it is easier to determine the sex of the baby. You’ll find out soon enough!

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Changes in your body

  • You will feel exhausted and sleepy
  • You may notice heart palpitations, hot-flashes and dizziness
  • You breath deeper
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a banana (15 cm and 260 grams)
  • The five senses develop
  • The brain now has 30,000 million neurons
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Drink plenty of fluids and eat iron-rich foods to prevent anaemia and help fight dizziness.

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Changes in your body

  • You are in the most pleasant phase of your pregnancy. Enjoy it!
  • Minor discomfort
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a small lettuce (17 cm and 300 grams)
  • Movements are steadily more frequent
  • The bone marrow begins to produce red blood cells
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If you have not had an ultrasound yet, this is the ideal time to know the sex of the baby, since it is at this stage when the vagina is formed in girls and, in the case of boys, the testicles descend from the pelvis to the scrotum.

Month 6

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Changes in your body

  • The baby’s movements are now easier to feel than ever
  • Your belly will be larger now, as the uterus now reaches the belly button
  • It’s perfectly normal for you to continue to feel sleepy and generally tired
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a coconut (19 cm and 350 grams)
  • Develops its limbic system, which allows it to control feelings
  • The nails, eyelashes and eyebrows appear
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The second trimester is the best time to visit the dentist.

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Changes in your body

  • Gums are susceptible to bleeding
  • Stretch marks might appear
  • Swollen legs
  • Back pain due to weight gain
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a grapefruit (20 cm and 450 grams)
  • The skin starts to acquire some colour
  • Cartilage is now calcifying to become bone
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Drink lots of fluids and apply moisturizing cream on your belly area to avoid stretch marks.

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Changes in your body

  • Dizziness and tiredness are common symptoms
  • Your pelvic area could be getting itchy because of the growth of the abdomen
  • Backache
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a small melon (21 cm and 700 grams)
  • The sensory organs are now fully developed
  • Changes position throughout the day
  • The lungs are fully developed
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Medication is given to women in early labour to help the babies’ lungs mature more quickly.

Between weeks 24 and 28 you can have the second-trimester blood test as well as the O’Sullivan test to detect possible risk of diabetes during pregnancy.

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Changes in your body

  • The pelvic itching and back pain continue
  • You might experience regurgitation or heartburn
  • Increased flatulence may occur with the compression of the bowel by the growing uterus
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a cauliflower (22 cm and 800 grams)
  • The eyelids begin to open and close
  • The sense of hearing develops even further
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Avoid fizzy drinks and eat your meals 2 hours prior to bedtime to avoid gas accumulation.

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Changes in your body

  • The areola darkens
  • Slight swelling of feet
  • Frequent urination, even at night
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a cabbage (23 cm and 900 grams)
  • Has cycles of sleep and wakefulness
  • Increased ability to control its body temperature
  • Accumulates adipose tissue under the skin to keep warm
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Avoid situations of stress, as this can directly influence your child.

Month 7

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Changes in your body

  • You might still suffer from swollen feet
  • You might start feeling Braxton Hicks contractions (when the uterus contracts and hardens)
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a lettuce (24 cm and 1 kg)
  • The heartbeat can now be heard when putting an ear on your belly
  • You can start noticing your baby’s hiccups
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If you notice more than 5 contractions in an hour, contact your doctor, as you may be giving birth prematurely.

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Changes in your body

  • You might experience the restless legs syndrome
  • Insomnia
  • More severe back pain
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of an eggplant (34 cm and 1.1 kg)
  • The baby is becoming more aware of his surroundings.
  • The baby is now familiar with your voice
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If your blood type is Rh negative, you will most likely receive an anti-D injection for your baby in case his blood group is Rh positive.

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Changes in your body

  • Your weight will begin to increase quite sharply (it’s perfectly normal!)
  • You might feel more clumsy than usual because of the weight gain
  • It鈥檚 normal for you to feel exhausted
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a small pumpkin (37 cm and 1.3 kg)
  • Moves freely
  • The baby starts turning around to rest head-down
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It’s time to rest and relax more since you will feel more tired than usual.

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Changes in your body

  • Your hips and pelvis expand to allow the baby to keep growing
  • You may suffer abdominal discomfort
  • You might experience heartburn
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a courgette (39 cm and 1.5 kg)
  • The skin is now smoother
  • The baby begins to position itself in the almost definitive position
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Rest and practice light exercise. Ideally, avoid stressful situations as much as you can.

It’s time to attend childbirth classes. They are ideal to learn to breath and prepare you for childbirth.

Month 8

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Changes in your body

  • The breasts start producing milk (colostrum)
  • You will notice your vulva has swollen
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a handful of asparagus (40 cm and 1.7 kg)
  • The lungs are now fully developed
  • The face has more of a rounded shape due to the accumulation of fat under the skin
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If colostrum secretions are too abundant, you can always use absorbent pads in the bra to avoid staining your clothes.

You can have the third-trimester ultrasound now. The main objective is to evaluate the position and correct growth of the foetus.

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Changes in your body

  • Possible haemorrhoids
  • You might suffer constipation
  • Colostrum is now more abundant
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a pumpkin (42 cm and 1.9 kg)
  • The brain is almost fully developed
  • The baby begins to create its first memory
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Your belly will stop you from sleeping comfortably. Find new positions or try placing more pillows on the bed.

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Changes in your body

  • Severe low back pain (sciatica)
  • You might experience pain in the buttocks, thighs and legs, as well as in the abdominal area
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a celery (43 cm and 2.1 kg)
  • Has his first dreams (eyes move quickly)
  • The baby is usually now in the cephalic position (head down)
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Practice yoga and light exercise to try and avoid or alleviate sciatic pain.

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Changes in your body

  • You might notice regular uterine contractions
  • The abdominal organs are displaced
  • Difficulty breathing
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a small pumpkin (45 cm and 2.3 kg)
  • Reacts now to stimuli
  • Has visible cheeks
  • Often sucks its thumb
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Exercise regularly to prevent edemas and the formation of varicose veins in the legs and vulva.

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Changes in your body

  • You might see your belly button beginning to stick out
  • Your body provides your baby with temporary immunity against diseases
  • Possible cramps in the vagina
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a pineapple (46 cm and 2.5 kg)
  • Has 100 billion neurons with 100 trillion neural connections
  • The skin is smooth
  • Lanugo hair begins to fall off
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Get a flu and whooping cough vaccine to avoid trouble.

Month 9

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Changes in your body

  • Your uterus is squeezing the lungs, which can make it difficult to breath
  • You may notice some swelling from excess fluid
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a papaya (47 cm and 2.7 kg)
  • Movements are less distinct as there is less space
  • Rosy skin
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Rest, whenever you can, with your feet up. This will improve your blood circulation and reduce swelling

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Changes in your body

  • You will notice pressure on the bladder
  • The cervix prepares for childbirth
  • You will notice swelling in the ankles
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a lettuce (48 cm and 2.9 kg)
  • Continues accumulating fat under the skin
  • It is very likely that the position in which the baby is now will be the definitive one
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Prepare your hospital bag, the baby might come any time now! Remember to have all your personal documents and your medical insurance or social security card ready with you.

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Changes in your body

  • Be alert to any early signs of labour (regular contractions every 5 to 10 minutes that increase in intensity over time)
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a melon (48 cm and 3 kg)
  • The foetus is now prepared to live outside the womb
  • The muscle tone is fully developed
  • The hair is now longer and thicker
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During this week you can have a vaginal examination to determine the consistency and degree of effacement and degree of dilation of the cervix.

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Changes in your body

  • Your waters can break at any time now
  • The swelling of ankles and feet is now completely normal
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a pumpkin (48 cm and 3.2 kg)
  • The baby swallows amniotic fluid and accumulates it as waste material (meconium)
  • It is possible that the umbilical cord wraps around the child, but because it is elastic, it is not usually a problem
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If your waters break (if you notice a trickle or a gush of fluid from your vagina) quickly contact your doctor or go to the nearest hospital.

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Changes in your body

  • Don’t worry about the pain in labour: you will secrete oxytocin so you can forget the pain and feel close to your baby
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a watermelon (50 cm and 3.4 kg)
  • Most of the fat (vernix) that covers the baby has disappeared
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In those cases where it is necessary, you can start programming a caesarean (as long as the doctor regards it as appropriate).

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Changes in your body

  • It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous and anxious. The time is coming!
  • Giving birth two weeks at either side of your due date is considered normal, so induction of labour is offered once the pregnancy exceeds 43 weeks
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Changes in your baby

  • Size of a watermelon (53 cm and 3.5 kg)
  • The baby is now full size
  • The baby is ready to be born at any time
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You will be reassured to know that only in 5% of cases the baby is born on its due date. So if this is your week 41 or 42 it’s completely normal.

 

Congratulations, your baby is in your arms! It’s time to care, educate and love your child.