When you are 13 weeks pregnant, you may start to “look pregnant” you may have a “bump.” During week 13 of your pregnancy, your baby’s fingernails should appear and several organs (such as the lungs and stomach) should develop into their final functioning form.
You now have officially entered the second trimester. At this stage of the pregnancy is where most families especially the new mom to be starts to celebrate. The risk for miscarriage has greatly reduced and the odds are in your favor that you will carry the baby full term. Also gone will be the morning sickness and the fatigue that you may have experienced in the first trimester. You will start to feel more energetic and your mental state will start to show improvements.
You will also start to show off your baby bump in this stage of pregnancy. The baby is still small in size but as the baby grows the uterus grows as well. You will your appetite grow as well and this is due in part of the baby taking the nutrients that you are taking in. Don’t feel that you have to stuff yourself, eat in moderation even if you eat a few times a day. The important thing is that you continue to eat right as long as you are healthy the baby is healthy.
Check with your doctor and see how they feel about any weight gain or loss you are experiencing. Sometimes doctors will recommend certain foods that are good for the mom and the baby. You should continue to limit your intake of caffeine drinks as well.
By now the baby is growing at a good pace, they measure approximately 2-1/2 to 3 inches and they weigh about .7 ounces. By the end of this week the baby is a full-formed baby. The head is still a bit larger than the rest of the body, but that will soon change. The baby’s eyes are starting to come closer together and the intestines and the organs are finding their places. The baby’s pancreas is starting to create insulin, this is important at this stage because it will help regulate the sugar levels for the baby after they are born.
The baby’s bones are still soft and a bit flexible but as the weeks progress they will become harder. It is imperative at this stage to keep taking your prenatal vitamins and drink plenty of milk. The baby will also start climbing and moving around the in the uterus. Though the baby is moving, you won’t be able to feel it yet. The placenta is functioning fully now and the baby is receiving oxygen, vitamins, minerals and proteins. The placenta also works as a filter that keeps carbon dioxide and waste out of the baby’s area.
The placenta is rather large in size but it allows most of the intake from the mom to cross into the baby’s bloodstream, this is how the baby gets his or her nutrients. But keep in mind that all of the good that goes to the baby, the bad goes as well. So stay away from alcohol, medications and even caffeine. At this week, the baby will have their first bowel movement called meconium.
Changes With Your Body
At week thirteen, the uterus will continue to grow in the up position. The pelvic bones are now able to take the pressure off the bladder. You will see your waistline start to get bigger. This will cause some aches in the abdomen, you may also experience round ligament pain, this occurs when the ligaments that surround the uterus stretch. These can be sharp pains in the abdomen that come with a dull achy feeling in the lower abs. This usually happens when you make a sudden movement like getting up or change positions.
This is normal, unless you start experiencing vomiting with this pain. Then you should call your doctor right away. This pain can be alleviate by simply relaxing and be very careful as you get up now. Some women have been diagnosed with what is called an incompetent cervix, this happens when the cervix becomes weal and it only opens about 2.5 cm during the pregnancy. Talk to your doctor and ask him to explain this condition more and your chances of having it.
Only about 25% of women who have this condition are detected with an ultrasound. This is one of the main reasons why miscarriages occur in the second trimester. The reasons why a woman may have this condition may be from a congenital disorder, cervical trauma or a previous D&C. But there is a remedy call Cerclage, this can be done to stitch and close the uterus so the uterus is capable of delivering the baby full term.
What To Expect
At this time, you may start to see stretch marks on your abdomen and on your breasts. Stretch marks sounds like the kiss of death for a women, but you can decrease the change of having them by gaining your pregnancy weight slowly. You don’t have to pile on the pounds in the first trimester, if you are having trouble with your weight, talk to your doctor; they may be able to slow you down a bit.
You may still have heartburn at this stage of pregnancy. You can reduce this by drinking a lot of fluids and eating the right foods. A small exercise routine like swimming or walking may reduce you heartburn as well. Stay away from heavy, greasy foods this can contribute a lot to the heartburn you may be feeling.
Your breast size will start to increase; this is because your body is preparing for lactation. They will continue to grow bigger as the pregnancy increases and will decrease weeks after the baby is born. The baby is a lot more flexible at this week in pregnancy. Many women and men question if they should be having sex throughout the pregnancy. Sex will not hurt the baby in anyway because the baby is well protected with the amniotic fluid but if you have a history of miscarriages, premature births or infections you will want to consult your doctor to see if it is possible at this stage.
Follow your doctor’s orders. This is very important during a pregnancy. Get plenty of rest and stay hydrated. By now you probably have a copy of a baby book. Remember that all pregnancies are different and these books are general guides. So don’t get upset if you read something in a book and is doesn’t pertain to you at your stage in pregnancy. Relax and enjoy your pregnancy.