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Week 8 of pregnancy

Congratulations on your week 8 of pregnancy, your baby is gradually growing from fetus to fetus. You are officially two months pregnant! 

The legs and arms are slowly taking up the form and facial features are getting more defined. Even though the baby bump isn’t visible yet, your uterus is expanding and you might notice that your clothes feel a bit tight especially around the waist.

What does week 8 of pregnancy look like?

At 8 week of pregnancy, the belly showing up is quite normal, but not showing up is also normal! Every mom has a different experience with pregnancy. Inside the 8 weeks pregnant belly, the uterus is expanding, as the baby rapidly grows inside, causing cramps and a bit of bleeding. If you are pregnant with twins, it might be evident that you are visibly pregnant at this point.

You are approaching the end of the first trimester. From the second trimester, your healthcare provider would measure your belly and also, your visits for prenatal checkup is likely to get more frequent. You might have gained a few pounds now and start to notice that your clothes fit. Your breasts might feel fuller and tender and even a bit tingly and sensitive. 

If you have been experiencing more frequent morning sickness or vomiting, you might have gained next to nothing. It depends from woman to woman and pregnancies to pregnancies. You can consult your doctor over weight management and self care practices. 

You may experience different levels of changes and discomfort, so being mentally prepared with it is very crucial for moms-to-be.

Week 8 of pregnancy

Fetal development at week 8

Your baby is growing at an incredible rate. By now your baby’s length should be somewhere around ½ to ¾ inch, almost the size of kidney beans or raspberry. It is hard to estimate the development as the growth can not be measured by just the height of the fetus. On an average a baby develops by millimeter a day in volume, signifying big changes can happen in the next few weeks.

  • If you view an 8 week baby through ultrasound, you will notice that the fetus looks less like a reptilian and more baby-like.
  • The tail that was initially formed is getting shorter and shorter, soon disappearing.
  • The hands and feet are sprouting out with teeny fingers and toes starting to differentiate. The fingers and toes might b e webbed together for now.
  • A sprouting tip of cute nose and upper lip forming.
  • Baby’s digestive system and the intestines are developing
  • Folds of eyelids are forming
  • The genitals are transforming into  ovaries and testes, but they aren’t visible yet.
  • Baby’s taste buds are now forming
  • Rise in Amniotic fluid and the womb expands to accommodate the growing baby.

You may have a prenatal checkup and if you do, you might be able to catch the glimpse of an 8-week fetus through ultrasound. You may hear and even see the baby’s heartbeat!

What are the symptoms?

Your hormones probably get crazier during this week, from sharp sense of smell to gastric problems. There is a set of symptoms that most women are likely to experience-

Sore breasts

This week, you’d probably feel a bit more bigger and heavier of the breasts. It is because the milk storing glands start to expand, making your breasts expand. You may even start to have some discharges, which is pretty normal.

Cramps

You might not be able to feel it, but your uterus is stretching out and growing. This normal uterine expansion may cause cramps and uneasiness. Occasional mild twinges shouldn’t be a source of concern but when there is severe pain for a prolonged period of time, consult the doctor immediately.

Fatigue and dizziness

the baby is rapidly growing and hike in pregnancy hormones can make you feel dizzy and lightheaded. The solution is to take enough rest and have a proper sleep schedule. Pregnancy is always a hypertensive state due to increased total blood volume.

 Heightened sense of smell

Along with morning sickness, you develop an uncanny sense of smell. Probably you might start getting bothered by a smell you never notices, which can trigger you and make you feel nauseous.

Self-care tips

Handling headaches

You may experience few aches and pains above the neck along with other cramps, blame it on the pregnancy hormones. As your blood volume increases to a certain percentage along with volatility in the level of hormones, you are most likely to experience headaches.

Track your weight

You might not be able to gain weight as recommended because of other factors like morning sickness and fatigue, but you should aim for maintaining a certain pattern of weight gain. During the second and third trimester, when the symptoms of pregnancy decrease, you should be able to pick the pattern.

Eat food that your body needs

Food aversion and cravings are the most known symptoms of pregnancy. Big meals can be a turnoff and it is better to adhere to healthy options for your cravings and the food that your body doesn’t protest. During the first trimester, you will have a tender appetite due to nausea and vomiting. Have six smaller meals throughout the day with healthy snacks.

Week 8 of pregnancy

  Visit the doctor

During the early prenatal visits to the doctor, you will most likely have a urine test for pregnancy confirmation, blood test to check the hormones levels and discussing thoughts and concerns.

The blood tests also checks Hepatitis B, STDs, HIV and immunities 

Here are some common FAQs that moms-to-be have, especially in their first pregnancy-

  • Are pre-existing medications safe during pregnancy?
  • What exercise is well suited for you during pregnancy?
  • What bodyweight should you maintain in different phases of pregnancy?
  • Activities and food to avoid
  • Any complications in your pregnancy
  • Tests to be considered throughout the pregnancy

There are certain things the doctor may ask during your first prenatal visit-

  • Date of the first day of the last menstrual period
  • Medical and menstrual history including past hospitalizations, therapies or pregnancies
  • Family’s health history regarding chronic diseases inherited diseases or birth disorders
  • Physical examination for Blood pressure and weight
  • Breast exam and a pelvic exam with a Pap test

An 8-week ultrasound isn’t a must. There are no standards for the number of ultrasounds. Some have many while some have none.

You might also like to know: Week 7 of pregnancy

Emergency appointments

  • Some pregnancies are assuring because you can observe the symptoms. But some pregnancies are symptomless. Dehydration and fatigue due to excessive vomiting should be brought to the notice of your doctor.
  • Symptoms vary in different periods. But they usually don’t disappear. Let the doctor know if all your symptoms have suddenly stopped or there is an unusual increase.
  • In case you are having spotting, do inform your doctor immediately and at every visit. Keep note of the volume of blood loss. A sudden increase in volume or passing out a mass may indicate a miscarriage.

Special considerations and complications

With all that’s going on with your body this week, it is natural to feel overwhelmed, doubtful and exhausted. Seeking the right advice when the things come up makes all the difference.

Body Image

Pregnancy can bring a toll on mental health. It triggers concerns and thoughts around body image, weight, and control over it. You may get disturbed by your body changes and it is normal to feel so. You can seek support from a professional to help you deal with such thoughts and engage in self-love and care.

Important checklist for week 8 pregnancy

  • Schedule your 10 weeks prenatal visit
  • Continue taking prenatal vitamins
  • Stay hydrated
  • Stock up some healthy snacks
  • Shop some comfortable clothes
  • Seek help from a mental health professional
  • Maintain a pregnancy journal

Bottomline

During this week, you will be visiting your doctor and getting all the required tests. You will be giving him crucial information and getting most of your questions answered. If you have missed out on any, it’s okay. You will be having more frequent visits and you can get things clarified as and when it arises.

Your baby and uterus would continue to grow as you start your third month in pregnancy, with your morning sickness soaring high, as it peaks at this time. 

Reference:

What do you think?

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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