11 Weeks Pregnant
Although you may feel like you still have a long way to go, your first trimester is winding down. Your baby has developed most of her organ system, but she still has a lot of maturing to do.
What’s happening with your body?
If you experienced morning sickness or other common early pregnancy symptoms, this week might bring more of the same. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Most bothersome early pregnancy symptoms should start to let up in the next few weeks.
This week you may notice, you’re passing a bit more gas and burping more. Nice huh? But it’s really not your fault. You can blame it on your pregnancy hormones, specifically progesterone, which relaxes the smooth muscle in your intestinal tract. Digestion slows, which can lead to excess gas being produced. It may ease up a bit in your second trimester. But just as you breathe a sigh of relief, gas can return in your third trimester when your abdominal cavity becomes crowded.
You might find by week 11 you are developing some food cravings and aversions. Every woman is different, so one’s gal’s aversion may be another’s craving. Why some women develop food cravings during pregnancy is not known. One theory is, women crave what their body needs. Other experts disagree. After all, if you are craving donuts and cookies, it’s unlikely your body needs all that sugar.
While you should pay attention to what you are eating, counting every morsel that goes it your mouth may drive you nuts. For the most part, try to eat healthily and if you give into an occasional sugary craving, it’s probably not going to hurt you. Keep in mind, there may be exceptions if you develop gestational diabetes.
If you get on the scale, you may notice you did not gain any weight yet. Most women only gain a few pounds during their first trimester. But that number is not written in stone. Weight gain will depend on your weight before pregnancy, as well as if you had any morning sickness your first trimester.
What’s happening with your baby?
By 11 weeks, your baby’s reproductive organs are forming. Although you won’t know whether you are having a boy of girl for a while, ovaries are developing if it’s a girl, and testes are forming if you’re having a boy.
If you have not heard your baby’s heartbeat with a fetal Doppler yet, you may be able to around 11 weeks. Hearing the lub-dub of your baby’s heart is an exciting time that you may always remember.
Your baby is developing hair follicles, and her nasal passages are opening. The placenta vessels are also growing larger to prepare for your baby’s rapid growth in the coming months.
As your baby develops and grows, she is also learning how to do a few tricks. She may be stretching or even hiccupping. You won’t detect any movements for a while, but give it a couple of months and you will feel all her antics.
Things to keep in mind:
If you have not shared the news of your pregnancy with your boss or co-workers, you will probably need to soon. At 11 weeks, you may or may not be starting to show. But in a few more weeks, your growing belly will be hard to hide.
When it comes to telling your employer you are pregnant; there is not a one size fits all timetable. But one thing is for sure, eventually you have to share the news. Before you talk to your boss, it’s helpful to know the policies of your employer. It’s also a good idea to consider how much time off you plan to take before and after you deliver.
The amount of time you may want to take off may depend on whether your company offers paid maternity leave or not and what federal mandates are in place for materiality leave. For example, some countries offer up to a year of maternity leave to women while others are much less generous.
Every situation is different. Your boss may be supportive, and your company may offer a great maternity leave. In other instances, supervisors and companies are not as excited as you are about your time off. But either way, you need to do what’s best for you and your baby.