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Hello, mom-to-be! How do you feel now that you’ve entered the second trimester of your pregnancy?! We guess excited and relieved since you must be aware that in the second trimester, nausea, morning sickness, and other pregnancy symptoms that troubled you will subside. Now that you’re 13 weeks pregnant, you can relax a little as the chances of miscarriage decrease after the first trimester. That said, you should continue to take precautions and follow your doctor’s advice because you have to keep yourself and your little one safe. You will want to know how your little is developing and what kind of changes your body will experience from now on and this week. Here’s what you should expect at 13 weeks of pregnancy.
Video: 13 Weeks Pregnant – What to Expect
Your Baby’s Growth at 13 Weeks of Pregnancy
If you could see your baby in the 13th week, she may look a little unusual. But do not worry, it is just that the size of the baby’s head is now half the size of the complete length of the baby’s body, which might make her look rather odd. As the foetus develops, it is the head of the baby that grows first and the body forms later.
Another interesting development that takes place in the baby during the 13th week of pregnancy is the development of the baby’s intestines and the vocal cord. The intestine leaves the umbilical cord in the 13th week and moves to the baby’s stomach for good. At the 13th week of pregnancy, your baby’s tiny bones may also start forming in the arms and the legs.
Size of the Baby at 13 Weeks Pregnant
At 13 weeks pregnant, the baby will be three inches from head to toe and will weigh close to an ounce (28 grams). Your little munchkin is progressing steadily and has grown from the size of a lime to as large as a peach or a pea pod. Now, your little one also learns to turn her head and is capable of swallowing, yawning, and even hiccuping.
Common Bodily Changes
Most women leave the fatigue and nausea from the 1st trimester behind to enter the smoothest phase of pregnancy. The 13th week of pregnancy is also the time when you may get that radiant glow that comes with pregnancy. One of the most critical bodily changes during pregnancy that you will observe in yourself during the last week of the 1st trimester is that your clothes will start feeling a little uncomfortable since you will put on some weight. This also means that you can start shopping for pregnancy wear.
However, in some cases, some of the symptoms from the first trimester like bloating, constipation, headache, and tenderness of breasts can continue throughout the pregnancy, especially if you are carrying twins.
Another significant yet not so pleasant change that you may observe during the 13th week is an increase in white vaginal discharge. This thin, milky, mild-smelling discharge is perfectly normal, and increases as the pregnancy progresses. This discharge protects the birth canal from infection and helps maintain a healthy balance of good bacteria in the vagina.
Symptoms of Pregnancy at Week 13
Some of the common symptoms during the 13th week of pregnancy are:
- Decreasing Fatigue: Now that your body has adjusted to the pregnancy, you will start regaining your energy. You can now engage in a mild workout regime.
- Food Cravings: Although you may still crave junk food, you may want to start eating healthy consciously. Indulging in small portions of junk food is allowed throughout the pregnancy, so, you don’t have to give up on your indulgences altogether.
- A Burning Sensation in the chest: As your pregnancy progresses, the muscle on top of the stomach relaxes and allows digestive acids to rise in the oesophagus. This is the reason for a burning sensation in the chest. However, there is not too much that you can do about it besides staying away from foods that trigger heartburn like chocolates, mints, spicy foods and alcohol.
- Changes in Sex Drive: Increased blood flow to the pelvis in this period causes a significant change in your sex drive. You may either want to abstain altogether or feel a higher libido. The rush of blood to the genitals may cause engorgement and more natural lubrication, making sex pleasant.
Some of the other mild symptoms that you can add to the above list are constipation, dizziness, and visible veins due to increased blood flow.
Your Belly at 13 Weeks of Pregnancy
It’s the 13th week, and your uterus will expand a bit. People you haven’t shared the good news with will now start guessing that you are pregnant. Your jeans too will start feeling a little tight around the belly, and your body-hugging tops may just about give away your happy secret.
Ultrasound Scan at 13 Weeks
An ultrasound scan is a sonogram taken to evaluate the growth and development of the foetus. Throughout the last week of the first trimester, a number of developments take place in the foetus, although you may not be able to see or experience all of it during the ultrasound. This is the week when your baby will finally have a functioning kidney and urinary tract. You can see in the sonogram that your baby’s arm and legs look more proportionate to the size of the body. In this week, the body frame starts growing, and the head now looks one-third of the size of the body. You may notice during the ultrasound that the baby’s fingertips and tooth buds too have started to develop.
What to Eat
Since the baby is growing fast now, you must take care of your food. Maintaining a diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients is essential. Try to include fresh fruits and vegetables and protein-packed food like lean meat, dried beans, and low-fat dairy products in your diet.
Avoid soft cheeses as they can contain listeria – a bacteria that triggers an infection called listeriosis in pregnant women. Make sure you stick to cheese that is made with pasteurised milk only. Also, avoid fish like tilefish, king and mackerel as these varieties of fish have a very high level of mercury which should be avoided during pregnancy since Mercury, when ingested, can hurt the developing brain and nervous system of the baby.
Here is a list of dos and don’ts to keep in mind during the last phase of your first trimester.
- Eat food that is a good source of folate, calcium, iron, zinc, and fibre.
- Eat healthy and home-cooked food.
- Drink 10 to 12 glasses of water and other fluids every day.
- Do get your dose of omega-3 fatty acids.
- Sleep well.
- Exercise moderately.
- Don’t eat for two.
- Don’t ignore food safety.
- Don’t expose yourself to pesticides.
- Avoid junk food.
- Avoid heavy exercising.
- Avoid sex if you have a history of miscarriage.
What You Need to Shop For
Shopping is always exciting, but this time around you have an adorable reason to shop. The 13th week of pregnancy may be a little too early to indulge in a huge bucket list of shopping as your baby bump has just started showing. So, shop for comfortable and stretchable clothes that you can wear for the next few weeks as you will definitely have to go for another round of shopping soon.
As you step out of the first trimester, the initial discomfort of pregnancy begins to fade. You will soon be entering the most comfortable period of the journey to motherhood. Use the increase in energy to indulge your nesting instincts and prepare for the physically taxing months ahead.
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