The end of the first
This month marks the end of the first trimester. This is
significant because for many women things get easier after
the end of the third month. The placenta is now fully formed
and so the exhaustion that you may have felt during the past 12 weeks should lift.
If you have suffered from morning
sickness up to this point then there is a good chance
that it too will lift. Do remember that morning sickness
is thought to be caused by high levels of pregnancy hormones
and so can be seen as a good omen. Luckily the opposite
is not true and the lack of morning sickness does not represent
any indication of problems.
Your monthly doctor’s visit will include the same
routine tests from last month, with one exciting exception.
By the 12th week your doctor should be able to hear the
baby’s heart beat, which will be a memorable moment
for you. The stethoscope can only pick up the baby’s
heartbeat around 17 weeks but modern technology has equipped
us with the Doppler, which amplifies the sound of the baby’s
heartbeat. If the doctor cannot hear the heartbeat it is
not cause for concern but usually an indication of incorrect
estimation of the due date. By this stage the doctor should
also be able to make a correlation between your due date
and the size of your uterus.
A real tiny person…
The baby will double in size during these four weeks to
about 6cm. During this time the ears and mouth will form
and the baby will begin to suck. The baby’s head is
more in proportion with its body and there is even a little
neck now! The sex organs are formed and can be detected.
The strain on your back…
As your weight starts to increase it is important to take
care of your spine. Strengthening your pelvic floor by interrupting
the stream of urine when you go to the toilet. Also practice
10 times a day contract your pelvic floor muscles in a movement
similar to a lift rising from floor to floor. Having strong
pelvic floor has several advantages for you: your back will
be protected by these muscles, these muscles will assist
you during labour and also speed up your recovery after
the birth. Take care to use the correct positions when standing
(do not let pelvis drop forward), sitting (push yourself
to the back of the chair and support the small of your back
with a cushion) and lifting (keep back upright and bend
from the knees).
And once again remember to take care of yourself –
your body is working very hard to make this baby , so don’t
be too stoic, rest when you feel tired and make healthy
choices with your diet.
to call the doctor?