It’s the 10th week! Time does fly, doesn’t it? And you’re coming very close to the end of your first trimester. By now, you’re probably starting to forget what not being pregnant felt like. This is great because it means that you’re adjusting well.
You may still be able to hide the gradually protruding bump, but not for much longer. Also, your clothes would definitely have started feeling constricting as your uterus is expanding and you’re growing rounder.
There may be some weight gain—maybe a pound or two except, of course, you’re still experiencing serious bouts of morning sickness.
This week should mark a definite appearance of veins in your abdomen and breasts if you don’t have them already. Your blood volume has increased significantly and would make the veins more prominent.
Hormones are still very much at work and you would likely experience regular symptoms like nausea and fatigue. But the end of the first trimester is drawing near and it typically marks the end of most of these symptoms in women.
Your baby is marking a significant milestone too. It would be officially regarded as a fetus from this week and would drop the title of an embryo. Some amazing news!
Your baby is now roughly the size of a strawberry.
Your Baby’s Development
At 10 weeks, your baby is growing really fast and straightening out a lot too. No longer shrivelled despite the time spent in the water and would be around 1.25 to 1.68 inches and weigh less than one-quarter of an ounce.
Your baby is also taking in a more human shape now and there is the formation of bones and cartilages. Knees and ankles are developing from the small indentations on the legs and it can now flex the arms which already have elbows.
Despite the themed “rapid growth” your baby is still pretty small, around the size of a prune now and these features are only just developing. The finger and toes which were previously webbed would begin to separate and fingernails would begin to grow too!
Similarly, the placenta is operating at maximum capacity and you can be sure that your baby is receiving adequate nourishment.
This might come as a surprise to you, but your baby is growing teeth! They are gradually forming under the gums and of course, they wouldn’t break forth until your baby is around 6 months old, but the growth is already happening.
More action in the mouth, the palate, or roof of your baby’s mouth would close up this week. Also, there is little or no chance of congenital abnormalities developing after this week. This should definitely ease your mind.
Organs that started to develop in previous weeks are not taking a break either. The brain, liver, kidneys, and intestines would continue to develop rapidly.
The brain now possesses all structural parts and its mass is increasing. As a protective measure, eyelids would begin to close and finally, the intestines are fully back in the abdomen now that there is sufficient space.
The digestive tract isn’t slacking, the stomach would begin to produce digestive juices and the liver working on bile secretion. The completely developed pancreas would begin to produce insulin and the volume of urine produced by the kidneys is on a steady increase.
Soon, you would be able to determine the gender of your fetus as testosterone would begin to be produced in males and the genitalia would start to assume the male or female form.
Finally, an ultrasound may detect a heartbeat this week. However, you would be unable to determine the gender just yet.
Your Body & Symptoms
Right now, your “companion symptoms” aren’t exactly ready to let you go. These hormones (quite a hassle, right?) are still doing what they do best—help the baby’s development and prepare your body.
If you haven’t had the time to take a look at what your body looks like, now is the time to. You would definitely notice certain physical changes, especially around your belly region.
You should notice a slight roundness—might be hard to miss depending on what your body was like before getting pregnant. However, it would be right there around your lower abdomen. This implies that in a couple of weeks, your pregnancy would become pretty obvious.
Right now, your uterus is about the size of a grapefruit, so your belly may not be apparent even to the sharpest of eyes, and maybe even to you. But give it a few weeks, and you cannot miss that slight bump.
Regarding your baby bump, don’t be bothered if you’re not seeing any roundness just yet. The time frame in which it appears typically differs from woman to woman depending on various features such as weight, height, and build.
Also, if this is your first pregnancy, it may show a bit later than in the case of repeat pregnancies. Just don’t sweat the small stuff.
Oh, and here are some symptoms that you would be seeing this week:
1. Veins Get Visible
You may have started to notice blue lines appearing on your skin, perhaps in crisscrosses on your abdomen and your breasts.
If you’re on the slim side and you’re fair-skinned, these veins would be a lot more visible. For darker complexions, you may notice what appears to be a mass of veins extending from around the areola and then down towards the belly button.
These veins play a major role in supplying the blood volume that your fetus needs for nourishment and development. Your increased volume of blood is what brought about the vein manifestation.
You may also notice an increase in the size of the veins present in your hands and feet. They may start to appear even more prominent.
The average woman experiences nearly a 50 percent increase in blood volume during pregnancy, hence the need for more veins in order to guarantee adequate blood flow.
These lines typically disappear completely after your baby is born and breastfeeding has ended.
The days when you used to spring out of bed at the sound of the alarm are well behind you now. You would probably find it pretty difficult to drag yourself out of bed, except with the motivation of a full bladder.
You’re going to experience fatigue this week but it will end very soon. In the meantime, you need to go easy on yourself. Reduce your workload so that you can get lots of rest. Also, try to keep active.
This might seem like an unlikely solution, but it does help. You would sleep better and night and wake up brimming with energy.
3. Bloating and Gas
Hormones are the bad guys here too. Your hormones would stimulate relaxation in all your muscles, including that of your gastrointestinal tract.
This implies that you would experience a higher rate of indigestion and increased volume of intestinal gas. The alternative right now is to avoid foods that are notable for producing gas. Recall that pregnancy journal?
It’s a great place to keep records of your food intake and whether the food you eat has “high gas production” tendencies. This way, you can avoid the triggers and experience less bloating and gas too.
4. Nausea and Vomiting
Around this time is the peak period for your nausea. You might feel tempted to not take any food at all but skipping meals doesn’t make it any better.
If anything, the feeling of queasiness would intensify. But if you’re really having difficulty keeping food down, then you should try remedies like sucking on ginger candy. Acupressure bands work just fine as well.
Also, pay a visit to your doctor, explain just how intense your nausea is and he may prescribe some remedies for you.
Measures To Begin To Observe
In response to the development of your pregnancy, here are some measures to begin to observe:
1. Avoid Smells That Trigger You
During pregnancy, you become very sensitive to smells, but the downside is that they may serve as triggers for nausea and vomiting.
It is possible that you suddenly begin to hate aromas that you found very appetizing and offensive ones that you could stand to an extent suddenly begin to make you feel sick.
Some of these culprits include sausage, eggs, fish, the smell of raw chicken, or even cologne in some cases. Stay away from any smells that set you on a beeline for the toilet.
2. Start Taking Vitamin D
Your baby’s teeth may not be popping out just yet, but they are slowly growing under the gums. Low vitamin D levels in your body can be the reason that your future baby ends up with cavities.
This should be one of the suggestions that your doctor would make during one of your appointments. And some great sources of vitamin D include orange juice, eggs, fatty fish, and fortified dairy products.
Listen to your doctor’s advice regarding what to do this week as well as subsequent ones and ensure that your diet comprehensively contains everything that you and your baby need for continued good health.