8 Weeks Pregnant
You might have shared the news, or you may be keeping things quite for a few more weeks. Either way, you hit the two-month mark at your 8 weeks and may be feeling many of the side effects of pregnancy.
What’s happening with your body?
At eight weeks pregnant, most people will not notice many outward changes to your body. But on the inside, a lot is happening. For example, you probably have not gained much weight yet, but your uterus is getting a little bigger. Prior to pregnancy, your uterus was about the size of your fist. But at eight weeks, it’s now about as big as a grapefruit, which may mean your clothes might be getting a bit tight around your waist.
Are you having trouble getting going in the morning or struggling to stay awake through your workday? Welcome to pregnancy! Fatigue is one of the most common first trimester symptoms. You may feel the type of exhaustion that makes you want to sleep in your office or hit the sack as soon as you get home from work.
Your little hitchhiker is along for the ride, but your body is providing the support! At eight weeks, your body is working hard to provide your baby with the right environment to grow and develop. The energy required to build the placenta and hormonal changes, especially an increase in progesterone, contribute to fatigue. You also might not be sleeping well due to nausea or getting up to pee more often. It’s no wonder, you’re feeling exhausted.
The good news is, by the start of you second trimester, your body will usually adjust to the changes, and you may have a renewed energy level. To deal with fatigue, allow yourself time to rest, take a nap and accept help.
Exercise may also help give you a little boost. When you’re dragging, the last thing on your mind may be hitting the gym. But light exercise can give you more energy. Now is not the time to take up marathon running, but doing a light to moderate workout, such as power walking or going for a short hike may help you feel energized.
What’s happening with your baby?
Your little one is now about the size of a raspberry and measures about 2.5 centimeters. But he won’t stay that small for long. He is growing every day.
Not only is your little raspberry growing in height, but his arms and legs are also getting longer. If you could see your baby, her toes and fingers are webbed that this point, but they won’t stay that way much longer. She is also now able to contract her limbs.
Your baby is starting to develop more facial features. For example, although not a cute, pouty mouth yet, her lips are starting to form. Her heart is beating at a rate of about 150 beats per minute. Branches of her lungs are also starting to develop.
Since she won’t be moving out for several more months, your baby’s home inside your womb is also changing to accommodate her growth. About two additional tablespoons of amniotic fluid are being produced a week, to cushion and protect your baby as she grows.
Things to keep in mind:
Your first prenatal appointment with your healthcare provider will likely take place between eight and ten weeks. If this is your first appointment with this particular provider, you’ll need to complete a health history including gynecological details. You should also take this opportunity to discuss any health conditions you have and medications you take.
During your first visit, your doctor or midwife will also perform a physical exam including a pelvic exam and a pap smear. Blood and urine tests will also usually be performed to check for infections, anemia and immunity to various diseases.
Your healthcare provider will also provide information on future testing, genetic screening options and information on prenatal vitamins, eating well and what to avoid. It is a good time to ask any question you have, such as activities to avoid, exercise precautions and the safety of supplements. If you have any concerns, don’t hesitate to talk with your healthcare provider. Remember, it’s yours and your baby’s wellbeing at stake.