Pregnancy Week 8

Guide Through the Eighth Week of Pregnancy

 

At 8 weeks pregnant, there may not be too many physical signs that you’re pregnant but there will be many changes going on inside your body. You may gain a little bit of weight, but that’s about it. As the months go by, the chances of a miscarriage will occur grow slimmer.

 

When you’re at your 8th week, you should plan a visit to your doctor. Your first prenatal visit should be between 8 and 12 weeks from your last menstrual period. This first prenatal visit could turn out to be a long session if you haven’t been for a check-up with your doctor for a long time. Your medical history will need to be checked out. Some of the topics that your doctor will be discussing with you are:  

 

  1. Your medical problems, if you have any

  2. When you had your last menstrual period

  3. What methods of birth control you use

  4. Whether you’ve had any abortions or miscarriages in the past

  5. History of hospitalization

  6. Whether you’re taking any medications and whether you’re allergic to any

  7. The medical history of your family

 

Once this discussion of your medical history is over, there are a few tests that you’ll need to go through. This is what you’ll be undergoing when you visit the doctor on the 8th week of your pregnancy.

 

  1. The series of tests that you’ll need to undergo are a pap smear, cervical cultures and an ultrasound scan to see how developed the fetus is and whether everything is in order.

  2. Once these tests are done, you can ask whatever questions and concerns you may have and your doctor will guide you through them and inform you of what to expect in the coming months and how you can take care of yourself so that your baby is born healthy and strong.

 

The Growth of the Baby in the 8th Week

 

  1. When you’re 8 weeks pregnant, the size of your uterus grows from the size of a fist to that of a grapefruit. This helps in the quick growth of the baby. The weight of the baby would be about 3 grams till this time.

  2. By the time the 8th weeks comes around, it’s confirmed whether your baby is a boy or a girl. However, until you’ve done a sonogram in the 4th month, it’s unlikely to be detected.

  3. During this time, the features of your baby start to develop slowly. Your baby’s facial features become more defined as his eyelids begin to form, his nose begins to protrude

  4. and the shape of his upper lip begins to show. The internal organs, muscles and bones also begin to develop.

  5. Your baby starts showing reflex action in the 8th week of pregnancy against external action. His heart starts to beat quickly and strongly.

  6. By the end of the 8th week, your baby will measure about 15 to 18 millimeters in length.

 

Changes That Occur in Your Body During the 8th Week

 

  1. A majority of women complain that they experience pain in the lower abdomen during this period. This is due to the growth of the baby and your uterus expanding to make room for this growth. There will be times when you feel a tightening and contractions in your uterus.

  2. The rise in your hormonal levels will cause some changes to occur in your body tissues. The size of your breasts will increase as they prepare for lactation.

  3. Due to the increase of blood flow to your breasts, you’ll find darker veins around them. This is a good time to start wearing comfortable bras that provide adequate support.

  4. A nerve in your legs will cause pain.

  5. By this time in your pregnancy, morning sickness will disappear. Other symptoms like nausea will also start to subside by the end of the 8th week of your pregnancy.

 

Tips for You

 

During your 8th week, you’ll need to undergo a few tests. Your doctor will check your blood pressure on a daily basis and you’ll also be advised to take a glucose test, HIV test and Rh factor test. There are also a few things that you should remember during this period in your pregnancy.

 

  1. A healthy balanced diet is important during any phase of a pregnancy, although it’s especially important during the first few weeks. This is the time when the organs of the fetus are forming and its survival and any chances of abnormalities are determined at this stage.

  2. It is also a good idea to plan when and how much you eat. It is recommended that mothers-to-be take meals that are heavier during the day and lighter ones at night. It’s wise to eat your meals at least 30 minutes before you lay down to rest.

  3. You should spare 15 to 20 minutes a day to take a walk. This can help immensely in coping with the stress and fatigue during this time.

  4. Simple exercises that help tone the breast muscles can help you shape your breasts during your pregnancy. They’ll also prevent your breasts from sagging when you start nursing your baby.

  5. During this time in your pregnancy, you’ll be required to take folic acid, iron and calcium supplements.

 

A Few Common Problems You will Face

 

 

  1. Vomiting, heartburn and bloating of the abdomen are some of the problems you’re likely to face during the 8th week of your pregnancy. These are common occurrences and there’s no need to be alarmed.

  2. Constipation is another common problem among expectant mothers during this period. There is pressure in the lower part of your intestine due to the growth of the fetus. It’s advisable to increase your fluid intake and add some foods that are rich in fiber to your diet.

 

As your pregnancy develops, you may start to experience more discomfort. It will not hurt much. but it’ll make you feel uncomfortable nonetheless. They often develop in the legs and it could be the formation of varicose veins that develop due to lack of circulation of the blood. Piles can also occur which is why the introduction of fiber-rich foods to your diet is so important.

 

Tips for the Dad-To-Be

 

It’s important that the father-to-be should be there for his partner through every stage of the pregnancy. During this time, he should be there to do all the heavy-lifting around the house. If you have pets in the house, especially cats, it’s important that he cleans the litter-box so that you’re not exposed to toxoplasmosis which is a rare, but serious blood infection.

 

You and your partner should both take the time to read books on pregnancies and baby books so that you both have an idea about what to expect with each week of the pregnancy. They’ll also help you after the baby is born. Tips and guides will prepare you for what is to come and how you can be the best you can be.  Doing things together also brings closeness between the two of you and once the baby is born, you’ll be ready for the challenges to come as a couple.



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