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Week 10 of pregnancy

Week 10 of pregnancy and you are about to reach the end of your first trimester. This might be the time you would probably tell out the pregnancy news if you haven’t yet. You might need to shop for some maternity clothes, don’t go all-in with shopping as your body changes every month. The best bet is to get some essentials. 

This week the baby is now completely transformed from embryo to fetus. The fetus is now looking more baby-like and you are getting close to having lesser pregnancy symptoms.

What does week 10 of pregnancy look like?

At the 10th week, your belly would start showing up. That is because your baby is now developing at a rapid rate and is now more baby-like. With more defined features and development in symptoms, you might see your symptoms skyrocket and emotions on a roller coaster ride. Your tummy would now have an extra curve, so you might need to get some loose and stretchy pants and go for some shopping errands.

Doctors suggest gaining around two to four pounds in the first trimester for women with normal BMI. Later on you can gain 1 pound every week till the end. So you need to track your weight and maintain consistency in weight gain. 

If you are expecting twins, the doctor might recommend gaining more weight. It is okay if you have trouble maintaining weight as morning sickness and fatigue. You’ll get your weight on track after the end of the first trimester. The baby’s development from an embryo to a fetus simply defines the phases of development.

Week 10 of pregnancy

Fetal development at week 10

At week 10, the baby is about 3.5-4 centimeters. The baby has now started to take human form now, a shift from embryo to fetus, signifying a different phase of development. The baby has its arms moving, cartilage, spine and bones forming at this point. The baby is practicing kicking and swallowing inside you, can you believe!

Usually genetic testing is required at this point. Although optional, the moms-to-be who are above 35 years of age or have a genetic genetic disorder are required to take the test for their safety and baby’s well-being. The genetic counselor can help based on family history and risk factors.

Following are the development noticed in the baby at week 10, 

  • All the baby’s major organs start to take shape
  • Nose, mouth, ears, and lips start getting more defined
  • Tooth buds are sprouting 
  • The arms and legs can now flex!
  • The Baby’s stomach is producing digestive juices with the baby learning how to swallow. 
  • Kidneys are now producing urine.
  • Eyelids continue to grow and are closed. 
  • The outer ears are getting developed and shifting to the position.

Related articles: Week 8 of pregnancy

What are the symptoms?

The ligaments and muscles get stretched accommodating the growing baby. The breasts get bigger with radical changes happening. 

Increased vaginal discharge

The increase in blood flow in the vagina and cervix along with a rise in estrogen hormone in the body causes a discharge known as leukorrhea, which is thick, mucoid, and non-irritating. It is nature’s way to get rid of toxins. Regular local cleaning is necessary and no treatment is required.

Mild round ligament pain

The stretch in the pelvic region to accommodate the growing baby causes aches and cramps. Some women don’t notice it but some find it downright painful. In 10th week, you might feel an increase in pain because the skin starts to stretch even more. Let your healthcare provider know in case you feel the pain is unbearable.

Backache

It is common in pregnancy. It occurs mostly due to weight gain, muscle spasms and effect of hormones on ligaments. Rest with elevation of legs is quite helpful.

Tender breasts

The breasts get larger, tender and sensitive in week 10 as they prepare themselves to breastfeed when the baby is born.

Morning sickness and fatigue

You might feel zapped because of getting lucid dreams while sleeping along with pregnancy hormones triggering fatigue. The morning sickness is among the first few symptoms of early pregnancy that would subside after the first trimester.

Varicose veins

The veins in the legs might appear to be blue and visible because of the increased blood flow and extra blood circulating for the growing baby. This happens due to obstruction of blood flow due to the pregnant uterus. Limb elevation and crepe bandage gives relief.

Week 10 of pregnancy

Self-care tips

Avoid triggering smell

Women acquire a good sense of smell a few weeks after pregnancy. Some smells can be offensive to them that didn’t bother them prior to the pregnancy. It is better to avoid being around the source of smell that triggers nausea. It is also recommended to stay away from food you may dislike during this time.

Focus on your well-being

The body of a mom-to-be is constantly working not just for development of the baby but also of placenta, which is a support system for the fetus. 

With all that work going on, you might feel tired and overworked. Take time to listen to your body by maintaining the required diet and suggested weight gain, trying some exercises to keep yourself active and give an energy boost. When you feel like taking a break, get one. Don’t stress yourself to make everything perfect. 

Sleep tracking and issues

Immediate steps should be taken to keep up with your sleeping pattern if you are not getting enough sound sleep. Exercising daily helps your body get sound sleep. Eating a minimum two hours before bedtime ensures that there is no heartburn when you sleep. A warm shower helps the muscles to relax and prepare themselves to sleep. 

Visit the doctor

Once you reach the 10th week of pregnancy, you need to check with your health provider the tests that you might require. However, some of the significant tests to check over are-

  • The screening test is usually done at the end of the first trimester.
  • Noninvasive screening for various genetic abnormalities is advised to women of all age groups.
  • It includes Nuchal Translucency, free B-hCG, and Pregnancy Associated Plasma Protein A in the first trimester.
  • The nuchal translucency screening is usually done between week 10 and 14. It’s increased measurement is seen in a chromosomal abnormality called Trisomy 21 (Down’s Syndrome). The NTS is done at the end of the first trimester where the test is done either through the ultrasound and the blood test.
  • After this, a second-trimester screening is done as well. Women who are positive in screening are advised to further diagnostic investigations. They can be invasive or non-invasive.
  • Invasive methods include Chorionic Villus Sampling, Fetal blood sampling, and Amniocentesis.
  • Chorionic villus sampling in which the doctor removes cells from the chorionic villi over the lining of the uterus. The cells of these finger-like structures contain the genetic structure the same as that of the baby. It is used to locate any abnormalities or chromosomal defects. There are two ways of conducting this test- 
  1.  Transcervical CVS – the healthcare provider takes a sample of Chorionic villi through suction using ultrasound to insert a thin tube through the vagina into the cervix
  2. Transabdominal CVS- the sample of the cell is collected with the help of a needle through the abdominal wall instead of through the cervix.
  • Amniocentesis can be used to check over abnormalities as well and is scheduled between week 15 and 20.
  • Fetal blood sampling is usually done after week 18.
  • Non-invasive tests include Cell-free fetal DNA (CFF DNA) test, conducted from week 10 of pregnancy. It helps in finding the baby’s blood group and any chromosomal abnormalities in the baby just by taking a sample from the maternal blood.

Care after the tests

The procedures can cause mild cramps and spotting. You can keep few things in mind after these procedures

  • Take enough rest
  • Avoid excessive exercising
  • Consult the doctor if you experience excessive bleeding, cramps or leaking fluid from the vagina

Important checklist for week 10 pregnancy

  • Mapping a healthy sleep routine
  • Consider buying essentials to support changing body 
  • Educate yourself with preliminary tests
  • Maintain a pregnancy journal
  • Continue having prenatal supplements

Bottomline

You will soon notice the pesky pregnancy symptoms decrease after 10 weeks of pregnancy. Your baby is at the next level of development and your body is strained more than before. You might observe fluctuations in nauseous this week, but other symptoms like sleeping issues might take on the toll.

Your baby is now officially a fetus and you are approaching the end of the trimester. Hang in there with all the symptom trouble, soon they’d be gone after a few weeks! As the weeks progress the symptoms will get less intense. Go for shopping retail to get those stretchy maternity pants because the belly bump is starting to grow.

Reference:

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Written by Neetu Verma

I am a certified Nurse in General Nursing - Midwifery. I am currently fighting coronavirus in a government hospital in the state of Madhya Pradesh in India as a nurse on special duty. I have a special love for writing and write as and when time allows me to do so.

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