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In just the past 8 weeks, you have undergone so much change. Some of which is visible, but most of which is felt. People most likely have not noticed a thing, but that is okay! You are pregnant and on pregnancy week 8.
By this time, you may be experiencing the initial symptoms of pregnancy, which include morning sickness. However, some are lucky enough never to feel this. In addition to morning sickness (which can actually occur throughout the day), you may feel a swollenness of the breasts, too.
Here are other important developments to expect this pregnancy week 8.
How is my baby growing?
While your belly may not yet be fully pronounced, your baby is actually steadily growing. And at pregnancy week 8, your baby is around the size of a baked bean, just around 2.7cm. By this time, your baby is busy developing fingers and toes. However, these are still fused together. Your baby’s face is also beginning to become more defined with the formation of a nose, eyelids, and upper lip.
Helping to protect and nourish your baby as well as the amniotic fluid that is increasing by 30ml per week!
Body & Life Changes
How is my body changing?
By pregnancy week 8. , you have most probably missed your second menstruation, confirming that you are, indeed, with a child.
As mentioned, more amniotic fluid is building up in the womb, but soon the placenta will take over to do its job. The placenta’s main purpose is to provide nutrients and oxygen to the fetus, as well as to take away any of the baby’s waste. When the placenta forms, it will also sprout branches that will eventually attach to your uterus.
Physically changes in pregnancy week 8. also include breasts that are becoming bigger and more tender. This may cause a little discomfort, so you may want to start looking for maternity wear and proper bras for more support. At this time, your breasts are also developing to get ready for eventual lactation and breastfeeding.
As to be expected, as your body kicks into high gear for pregnancy, you will become more easily tired. At pregnancy week 8. , your body is producing more progesterone, which may cause you to feel drowsy as well. When this occurs, feel free to rest and take a nap. It is important to listen to your body and to not stress about any new changes. Your body is doing amazing things!
What should I be concerned about?
At around pregnancy week 8. you will experience more of the pregnancy symptoms you have been feeling the past weeks, as well as news ones. Here is what to expect:
- Morning sickness
- Tender, swollen breasts
- Metallic taste in your mouth
- Mood swings
- An aversion to certain smells and food
- Period-like cramps
- Darkened patches of skin on your face also known as the “mask of pregnancy”
- Light spotting
Morning sickness, breast tenderness, and the other symptoms you will experience by pregnancy week 8. may have you feeling a little irritable. But you can try out a few tips to help alleviate your symptoms.
- Eat healthier food. Oily, spicy, and fatty foods may lead you to feel more drowsy and bloated. To counter the feelings of tiredness, choose foods that are low in fat, and are easy to digest such as salads and light carbohydrates.
- Eat smaller meals throughout the day. Eating a full meal three times a day may feel too much for a pregnant woman. Instead, you can break down your meals into smaller ones and eat them throughout the day. It can help with nausea and it allows your body to digest smaller amounts of food.
- Take prenatal vitamins. Some prenatal vitamins may have a weird taste, so take these on a full stomach and/ or with ginger candy
- Drink lots of water. In addition to eating smaller meals, drinking lots of water, and staying hydrated to help with digestion. Aside from water, you can sip on tea such as ginger tea, which is said to help with nausea.
Avoid certain foods that aggravate your nausea. Around pregnancy week 8, you may have noticed that you have developed a sensitivity to certain odors. Avoid this food and smells, and keep the room ventilated if needed. Open the windows and take a breath of the great outdoors.
Your Doctor Visit
What should I tell my doctor?
By pregnancy week 8. , you may be experiencing more bouts of nausea and headaches. These are usually harmless and common but may cause a little discomfort. This is due to the fact that your body is producing 40%-50% more blood. Talk to your doctor for tips and natural remedies to address this concern.
What are the tests that pregnant women should know about?
One of the tests that your doctor may request around pregnancy week 8 is a pap smear. Pap smears help to identify any STDs that may pose a risk to you and your baby.
The CDC also recommends prenatal screening for the following:
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitis C
By clearing the risks for any of the following can provide you and the medical team more confidence in a safe pregnancy. If you have contracted infections, your doctor can prescribe the proper treatment, which may include antibiotics. When treating infections, always consult your doctor.
Health & Safety
What should I know about being healthy and safe while pregnant?
On pregnancy week 8, you may have realized that you are now worrying for two. It is understandable that you may become a bit overwhelmed by all the information, from the precautions to tips and reminders from your family and friends.
However, you can rest assured that your medical team will provide you with accurate information. Consult them for any concerns.
By pregnancy week 8, in order to accommodate the changes in your body and to adjust to your new level of energy, you may have to rethink some of the activities you do on the daily. Though it is highly encouraged that you lead an active, healthy lifestyle, it is best to clear with your doctor the types of sports and exercises that are safe for you and the baby.
Ideally, you can do 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercises a day. To know whether you are working out within the right intensity, you should be still able to carry a conversation even while doing the activity.
Here are some of the types of physical activity that are NOT recommended for pregnant women:
- Contact sports. Sports like football, basketball, and the like wherein players are most likely to collide and fall increase your risk of injury and miscarriage.
- Running, cycling, and horseback riding. Though more of a solitary activity unlike contact sports, these are also not recommended for pregnant women as the combination of heat, risk of falling, dehydration, and pressure on the joints make this far from safe.
- Rigorous exercise. Intense exercises such as HIIT routines put extra pressure on your back and joints and increases the risk of trauma to your abdomen. Opt for slow, low-impact exercises such as yoga, water aerobics, and the like.
- Diving. This must be avoided, even if you are an experienced diver. As swimmers or divers head back to the surface, gas bubbles form in the blood. This is dangerous for you and the baby.
Intense sports and exercises are generally not recommended, because these types of activities redirect flow of blood and nutrients to different parts of the body, instead of the baby.
In general, exercise is beneficial to the mother and child as this will help strengthen the body and help her throughout her pregnancy, most especially delivery. However, one must always think of the risks involved in such activities.
With every month that passes, you must be gradually reducing physical activity in order to reduce risks of preterm labor or development of fetal defects. Consult your doctor for the best exercises and activities for you.
By pregnancy week 8, you are beginning to experience the “full pregnancy experience” with symptoms setting in and seeing the gradual changes in your mood and energy. Get ready for week 9!
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.