40 Weeks to Becoming a Mom – Part 2

Part 2 of the 4 part blog to let YOU, the about to be mom, know what your body undergoes during your pregnancy

#4 Small Talk 2019

Week 11

By this week
you will be noticing a change in your breasts. Darkening around the nipple area
will be visible and there will be tiny bumps on the areolar. Totally normal and
no need to panic! These little bumps actually secrete lubrication onto the
nipple to prepare for breast feeding. (I told you the body was very smart!).

The ideal time for an ultrasound is between this 11th week and the 14th week of your pregnancy. An ultrasound done at this time gives a pretty accurate idea of when your baby will be due. After 20 weeks, this accuracy actually declines and is only done to monitor baby’s developmental progress.

Week 12

  • Your
    uterus is now about the size of a grapefruit.
  • Hormonal
    changes may cause you to develop a dark line running down your abdomen from
    your belly-button.
  • You
    may also experience mood swings during this week and for the rest of your
    pregnancy – much to your partner’s dismay! He needs to be reassured that this
    is part and parcel of being pregnant and is only the hormones talking. You will
    regain your mood equilibrium once you are no longer pregnant.
  • By
    now, you and your partners should decide on your options of a birthplace. Do
    you want a hospital birth and if so, which hospital. Do you want a home birth
    rather with the help of a midwife/doula? Ask lots of questions. You need to
    know if the doctor you have chosen will only deliver in the hospital they are
    associated with, for instance. What are their statistics on C-sections versus
    natural birth? Do they accept it if you want an elective C-section or do they
    reserve this for emergencies only? What about pain relief? Can you have an
    epidural? So many questions will occur to you as time goes on. Make a list of
    all you want to know and ask around!!

Week 13

Now you are
entering your second trimester and can relax somewhat! During your ultrasound
checks will be made on baby’s progress. You may develop nasal congestion at
this stage (probably those dastardly hormones again!). Use saline nasal drops
to help clear the congestion.

Week 14

Many women
develop a white vaginal discharge at this stage. It is called leucorrhoea and
should not be itchy or smell offensive. If you have any bleeding or significant
cramps, call your doctor immediately.

Week 15

  • If
    you can, sleep mainly on your side. The left side is better, as this increases
    the blood flow to the foetus.
  • Your
    urine will be tested for sugar, protein and ketones at each antenatal visit.
    The first two are done to monitor for gestational diabetes, pregnancy
    hypertension (high blood pressure). Ketones would show whether you are breaking
    down fat and if so, you would need to change your diet.

Week 16

By week 16
you may start to feel Braxton Hicks contractions. Your uterus can now be felt
just above your pubic bone. If you have a “high risk” pregnancy for whatever
reason, amniocentesis may be done to detect any chromosomal abnormalities.
There is a slight chance of miscarriage with this procedure and you will have
to wait several weeks for the results. An alternative is to have the Triple
Test for foetal abnormalities done. This is done on your blood and the results
will only take a few days.

Week 17

Foetal
movements can now be felt….so exciting!! You may find yourself forgetting
things and this is also totally normal, so don’t fret about it. Gentle,
manageable forms of exercise can be started. These should aim at energising and
refreshing, rather than exhausting you!

Week 18

Your body
will be adjusting to the increase in blood volume and vascular tone. If you
have low blood pressure, you may feel dizzy if you get up too quickly or if you
stand for a long time. This is not harmful although it can be rather disturbing
to experience!!!

Week 19

By now you
may be thinking of antenatal classes to help you and your partner know what to
expect. Normally a couple will start to attend these classes when the mom is
about 24 to 26 weeks pregnant. So you have time to choose a class which will
give you lots of information about the various birthing options that are out
there so that you can make an informed choice on the way you wish to approach
labour and childbirth.

Week 20

You’re half
way there! Your uterus can now be clearly felt in your abdomen and is ovoid in
shape. This is the time to remove a belly ring, if you have one, and replace it
with a ring retainer. You will have to increase the size of this retainer as
your tummy grows. If you have any other piercings, such as on your nipples or
genitalia, remove them during your pregnancy to prevent discomfort and
infection.

Conclusion

Phew, you’ve made it through the first 10 weeks and I bet you are glad that they are over!

Next week I will cover the second half of your pregnancy and see what happens during the weeks 21 to 30. Until then stay healthy, eat well and enjoy your pregnancy!

Yours in
lifestyle newborn photography

Lydia

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