Baby Names Developmental Chart
First TrimesterMonth 1
Weeks 1-4: You have just found out that you are pregnant! Congratulations! Amid all the excitement and no less than a million thoughts running through your head, you realize you are responsible for keeping this baby healthy and safe while it's growing inside of you. The next logical step for many mothers is to begin pouring over all the information available about pregnancy and birth. Baby Names Plus will provide you with a wealth of information and resources to make you feel like a pregnancy expert!
Week 5: How tired are YOU! By this time you may have begun to feel some of the unfortunate side effects of pregnancy such as: sore breasts, mild-to-extreme exhaustion, nausea, frequent urination (and darn it if there wasn't only a little SQUIRT!), and irritability to name a few. Your baby is now approximately 1-3mm long and his heart will begin to beat soon. He is developing all of his facial features and major organs. Buds, which will be his arms and legs, begin to form as well as his spinal cord. No wonder you are tired! Make sure to eat healthy and "graze" all day instead of eating big meals. The more you can consistently keep food on your stomach and your sugar level steady, the less likely you are to feel sick. Keep a banana or something easy to grab next to your bed and munch before rising-it helps keep the morning sickness away.
The placenta is being built very rapidly and your baby's heart is beating. Are you still feeling sick? Try food/drinks with ginger in them-it has been shown to relieve nausea. Try to get as much sleep as you can. Pamper yourself! In other words- you need to start thinking lunch "naps" instead of lunch "errands"! Try to reduce stress and talk to your doctor if the sickness gets so bad you are having a hard time keeping anything down. Dizziness and constipation may start to slow you down even more, and some women develop spots on their face due to hormonal changes. Your clothes may begin to feel tight and you feel like your mood swings and bodily discomforts MUST be affecting your baby! Rest assured that as long as you are eating healthy and taking your vitamins, he blissfully unaware. You, however, are probably adding indigestion to your growing list of ailments! Some women experience no discomfort at all. If you are in this lucky group, do not assume something is wrong with you- just be thankful! And either way, smile! This is going to be one of the best years of your life! Your baby is starting to move around, even though you cannot feel him, and is about the size of a peanut shell. His brain is growing quickly now and his head may be rather large compared to the rest of his body. Eating healthy has been proven to produce a much higher percentage of healthy babies, and there's no better motivation than that!
You may begin to get anxious to reach that 12-week mark, when the chance of miscarriage is greatly reduced and when most women suffering from morning (or all-day) sickness can finally enjoy food again! Hang in there, get plenty of sleep, eat healthy...you are almost there! These weeks are some of the most important developmentally. While you are busy crying at everything from silly TV commercials to the cute little outfit you saw in the store, your baby is hard at work on her organs, muscles, nerves, and sex organs. Facial features, such as lips and ears become more apparent and finger and toes are visible. She grows to about 3 inches long by 12 weeks, and is wiggling all around, even though you still cannot feel her. Fingernails and tooth buds begin to form, and she has the ability to swallow. Because your placenta now takes over the hormone production, nausea begins to subside as well as headaches. Remember, though, if you do not consume the vitamins, calcium, and other nutrients your baby needs, she will take them from your body. This can lead to weak bones and other problems for mom, so eat healthy!
Second TrimesterMonth 4
OK, you've made it, BUT even though you are sooo excited to be able to eat comfortably again, do NOT go overboard (speaking from experience here, moms!). Keep trying to stay on the healthy side of everything, and only allow yourself the "goodies" a couple times a week. If you have maintained a good exercise regimen, you should be doing fine. Another reason to celebrate is that you should be getting your energy back. Now's the time to shop! Decorate the nursery! BUT, if you are painting, be sure to get a mask. Paint fumes have been known to cause developmental problems in some babies. This is also the time some moms begin to feel their babies move, although any time between weeks 16-22 are just as common. Your belly may begin to show, and you are supposed to gain about a pound a week starting at this point. He can hear you now, and NO, it is not silly to sing and talk to him. The placenta is fully formed and functioning now, and by the end of this month, he is about 6-7 inches long and weighs about 5 ounces.
You will probably feel your baby move this month as she becomes more active. She has started to develop a sleeping schedule and she is 8-10 inches long and growing fast! A good sign that you are not getting enough calcium is leg cramps. Remember, calcium can be found in much more than milk. Spinach, fruits and cheeses, as well as many items such as antacids and butter are now rich in calcium, so you just need to be aware and read your labels.
Things start to get a little stretched this month, and even if you are a little person who hasn't "showed" up to this point, people can usually tell you are pregnant. Try second-hand shops for maternity clothes if you are strapped for cash, or if you just want to load up on staples for around the house and then buy a few new outfits. Kmart has really great practical maternity clothes and bras, and may I suggest "Love Pat" undies, which can be found at most stores. They are extremely comfortable! So, may I add, are your hubby's clothes (if he doesn't mind). Try not to stand or sit for long periods of time, drink lots of liquids, and limit salt intake to help reduce discomfort and swelling in your ankles, hands, and feet. Your back may ache, and as your baby grows quickly now, discomforts such as itching and pain down the side of your belly from a growing uterus can be a nuisance. Keep smiling, though, because you are more than halfway through at this point. Get out a ruler- can you believe he is 12 inches long! Eyelids part, eyes open, his skin is red and wrinkled and he is covered in fine, soft hair called lanugo. It is usually around this time that your doctor will order an ultrasound to measure weight and growth and, if you want to know, the sex of your baby. This is one of the most memorable moments of your whole pregnancy!
Third TrimesterMonth 7
As your belly grows and stretches, you may be more apt to lose your balance, so be careful. Stretch marks may be prominent now, as well as hemorrhoids, varicose veins, indigestion and heartburn. False contractions, called "Braxton Hicks" can start at this point, but they should not really be painful. Your body is just preparing for the "big game," and these early contractions are the "warm-up." If you do begin to have real pain with the contractions, see your doctor immediately. Also, be aware of the movement of you baby. If you have gone 12-24 hours with no movement, have a drink with sugar and caffeine. Then, if there is still no movement within the hour, see your doctor. Take care to cut out salty foods, drink plenty of water, and alternate short periods of sitting and standing. Swelling can be a real hassle, so be preventative. Your baby has hair and her eyes are complete with eyelashes and eyelids that open and close. Her head has become much more proportionate to her body, and she is becoming sensitive to light, sound, taste and smell. She grows to around 15-18 inches long, and will basically spend the next 2 months putting on fat and finishing her lung and brain development. You have done a great job giving her the best chance possible for a healthy start!
This is when the hard work of exercising is really paying off because the belly you are now sporting is pretty heavy! You have less and less room on the inside also and may be short of breath. It is definitely better to eat many small meals or snacks than a large meal, as your stomach is a little pressed for space! You may experience milk leaking from your breasts at this point, and those early contractions may be coming a little stronger and more often. Having trouble sleeping? Try a pillow between your legs- sleeping on your side is best, and as you get bigger, it may even be more comfortable to sleep in a recliner. Your baby is cramped as well and because his length is about 18 inches, and you will notice less moving as there is less and less space. He will still have a strong kick, though, and you may be able to see elbows and knees traversing across your stomach. His brain is growing rapidly and his lungs are still developing. He weighs about 5 pounds, and will put on about a half pound a week from this point.
There is a saying that goes "Once you think you absolutely cannot take any more, you have one month left!" OK, so now most of you have an "outie" and the bathroom has once again (unfortunately) become your most popular room in the house, but your breathing may get a little easier as the baby drops into place against your cervix. Vaginal mucous discharge becomes heavier- some women have to wear a panty liner for the whole pregnancy. The baby is actually considered full term at 38 weeks, but he is just putting on a couple more pounds before making his appearance. Lungs are fully developed, and mom begins the waiting game in earnest. Get as much sleep as possible and pack your bags! It's almost time to meet the person you've been waiting on for so long! And when the big day comes, we hope it will be everything you've been dreaming of…