Pregnancy Week 8117 Comments
Your Baby's Development This Week
Are those Daddy's or Aunt Helen's ears? You can't tell yet, but the ears are developing right now, both internally and externally. The baby's heartbeat is 150 beats a minute, about twice that of an adult. The intestines have made the journey from the umbilical cord to inside the abdomen now. The tongue is forming and cartilage, the precursor to bone, is also developing this week. The fingers and toes are growing, but are still webbed at this point. The little muscles are now able to contract. The baby's home is cushioned with amniotic fluid that increases by a couple tablespoons a week. The tip of baby's nose is now visible. The baby is taking a more "baby-like" shape, with the body continuing to straighten and the embryonic tail disappearing. The baby is now 1.6 cm. and weighs about a gram. The size of a bean. This marks the end of the embryonic period and begins the fetal period in baby's development.
Symptoms You May Feel During Week 8
The uterus is now the size of a large orange. The blood volume in your body has gone up by 40-50%, and you may notice more pronounced veins running especially in your chest area. You probably have outgrown your bras by now, and are beginning to feel a bit snug in some of your other clothes, especially your pants. Sometimes that's due to the bloating more than baby or uterine growth. Either way, you are starting to feel decidedly different in your own skin.
Skin is something else that might be changing dramatically for you now. The increased oil production in your glands might be causing some acne. Or for some, that pregnancy glow. If your skin is taking on a dark discoloration, and it is over the face in a symmetrical pattern, you might have the mask of pregnancy, or melasma. This condition can also occur from birth control pills or hormone therapy, and with pregnancy, the condition may improve after the birth of the baby. If not, there are treatments available.
Visit With the Obstetrician
At this visit, why not get a list of all over the counter medications that are allowed for pregnant women, and those that are no-no's. Be sure to find out the generic names too, and ask questions if you don't understand anything your doctor tells you. Ask about what to do for indigestion or heartburn, allergies, colds, diarrhea, aches and pains, and so on. It'll be easier than trying to find out after symptoms occur. These lists change regularly, so what your cousin Lucy took a couple years ago might be off limits now. Always check with your doctor before taking any medication, including those for acne, or other topical preparations, as they are medicine too!
Preparing for Baby
While your clothes may only be starting to fit badly, it's time to start planning for that pregnancy wardrobe. Maternity clothes can be expensive, but having a plan and enlisting help can really take the crunch off the budget. Borrowing is a pregnant woman's blessing. Talk to those who were pregnant roughly the same seasons. No sense getting a lot of big stuff for winter if your baby is due in July. Shop consignment shops for good deals. And don't forget those same places when you are finished wearing your maternity clothes, as you could sell them and buy for baby all at once. If it's yard sale season, watch the ads and follow the signs! This can be a great place to load up on everyday maternity items. Use the internet, and shop around. If you live far away from stores that sell maternity items, and not that many do these days, the internet can be a great way to find clothing at a good price. Plus you may get a larger selection and you won't feel like you are wearing the same "pregnant uniform" as every expectant woman in your neighborhood. For around the house things, consider borrowing from daddy's closet. However, do plan on buying a few favorite new pieces. It will be crucial later for your mood and self-esteem to have a few outfits you actually like and feel good in!
Early in pregnancy, you might want to go to your local library and check out special exercise DVDs for pregnant women. This is of course, after your doctor has given you a thumb's up on an exercise program. Try out the exercise DVDs before buying to see which ones you actually like enough to stay with. No sense buying something that you hate doing. Try them out and maybe choose a couple, so you don't get bored with just one. This may be something else you find at a yard sale or resale shop, or can borrow from friends or family.
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