Week 7 pregnant
You are now officially just over halfway through your first trimester. Your baby has grown about 10,000 times bigger than it was when you first conceived. So much of your baby’s growth is concentrated on its brain this week, with around 100 new brain cells forming every minute!
You are now officially just over half-way through your first trimester. Even though you may be feeling less than fabulous and don’t yet look pregnant, be assured that a lot is going on inside.
Constantly comparing the size of your baby with some variety of food may seem strange, but this is normal in the early weeks of pregnancy. It just eliminates any confusion and ensures that we’ve all got a mental picture of the same thing. So, when you are 7 weeks pregnant, your baby is the size of a grape and your womb is the size of a medium orange. That should give you an idea!
Your baby has also grown about 10 000 times bigger than it was when you first conceived, but you still won’t be aware of it jumping around like a little grape inside your womb. That will only happen about half-way through your second trimester.
Your physical changes this week
Constipation may be your unwelcome friend this week. The large bowel tends to get a little sluggish during pregnancy and the hormone progesterone has a slowing down effect. It will help if you drink lots of fluids and make sure your diet is high in fibre.
You’ll be feeling all the earlier symptoms as well, but perhaps with even more gusto. Nausea, intolerance to certain foods, vomiting and even heartburn can hang around for most of the day.
Lots of drooling makes you constantly want to swallow. You won’t be at the point of needing to wear a bib, but it may feel like it. Be careful about your oral hygiene but watch how far back you go with your toothbrush. Your gag reflex may be too sensitive now to be brushing the back of your tongue.
You could be feeling a second bout of adolescence with an outbreak of pimples. This is purely due to the hormones racing around your body.
You may be especially sensitive to the heat and want to strip off your clothing the first chance you get. This is as a result of the extra circulating blood volume in your body and the hormonal “power surges” common in the early weeks.
You may feel a bit of “thickening” around your middle even though it’s not until after the 12th week of pregnancy that your womb will be lifting up out of your pelvis. Some women gain a few kilos in the first trimester and others lose weight, it’s purely individual.
You might be feeling really tired all the time and no amount of sleep seems to make a difference. This is such a common symptom of early pregnancy, but by the end of the first trimester your normal energy levels will return.
Your emotional changes this week
No big changes on the emotional front this week. You might still be feeling a sense of disbelief that you are pregnant and rely on your symptoms, rather than what you look like, to remind you.
If you have friends who are trying to conceive who haven’t been successful, you might feel a bit guilty. Be sensitive to their feelings, but try not to minimise your own excitement.
The reality of being pregnant may come home to you this week. You might worry about how you could possibly be a parent and the idea of raising a small child to adulthood seems completely daunting. Try to just deal with one day at a time and have confidence in your own abilities. Speak with your own mom, if you can, or other women who have children and probably had the same feelings.
Your baby’s changes this week
Your baby’s bones are beginning to form, and the facial features are becoming more recognisable. The back of the head is growing faster than the front.
The mouth and tongue are starting to form in week 7, along with the arms and legs. So far they still look like paddles, flapping around from the side of their chest, but as the weeks progress they’ll become more defined.
So much of your baby’s growth is concentrated on the brain this week – around 100 new brain cells are forming every minute. It’s no wonder that you’re feeling hungry – all that baby growth needs the energy from food to support it.
Your baby’s sex glands are starting to form this week, but it’s still way too early to tell if your baby is a boy or a girl on an ultrasound.
Your baby’s kidneys are where they need to be, but they haven’t started filtering blood just yet. They will soon start producing urine, which will form a fair percentage of the amniotic fluid that the baby is going to float around in for the next 7 months or so.
Hints for the week
Make a dental appointment. Poor oral hygiene and gum disease are linked with premature labour, as well as other complications. Speak with your dentist and oral hygienist about how to maintain a healthy mouth throughout your pregnancy. Remember: tell them you are pregnant because x-rays at any stage of pregnancy can be risky.
Consider eating more ginger. Many women say that ginger biscuits, ginger beer or ginger lollies help to settle a queasy tummy. Eat small snacks often and avoid too much time in-between meals. Don’t be concerned if you can’t face tea or coffee. Lots of women say these are the first of many aversions they develop through their pregnancy. Try herbal or peppermint tea instead or sip on cool, iced water.
Many women crave salty, vinegary foods at this time and, when eaten as a snack, these can be tolerated more easily than a heavy meal – so stock up on those crackers and spreads that are high in the vitamin B group, while also making sure that they have some other nutritional value.
What’s going to happen in week 8?