Week 9 pregnant
At this time, baby’s mouth and tongue are starting to form. The hands, which until now have been webbed, will start to separate into fingers. On an ultrasound, the foetus appears to make jerking movements.
You are now officially in the last month of your first trimester! You’ve probably gotten your head around being pregnant by now and it doesn’t seem like such a foreign concept anymore. At 9 weeks of pregnancy, your baby has become a permanent fixture and is probably making its presence well and truly felt.
It is still not obvious to anyone else that you are pregnant yet, but your waist could be getting quite big. Close-fitting trousers and skirts don’t close like they used to and you could find yourself limited to what fits you. It’s still too early to be wearing maternity clothes, so search the inner depths of your wardrobe for clothes with an adjustable waistband.
At 9 weeks pregnant you may be thinking about telling your family and close friends about your special news, or they could be getting a little suspicious. Declining alcohol, giving up smoking, changes in your appetite or needing to run off to the bathroom a lot can raise alarm bells for the more observant. There is no perfect time to tell the world. Lots of couples wait until after the first trimester has passed when the risk of miscarriage is reduced.
Your physical changes this week
- It’s still too early to see or feel your expanding womb through your tummy wall, because your womb is still protected behind your pubic bone and won’t start lifting up and out until after the 12th week.
- You might see your veins more clearly, especially across your breasts and legs.
- Your legs may ache if you’ve been standing for a while and you probably want to sit down more often. Try to put your legs up when you can and rest them on a chair or footrest.
- You will probably find your vaginal discharge has increased by now. This is normal throughout pregnancy, and unless it smells offensively or becomes yellow or irritating, don’t be concerned. Many pregnant women use panty liners and find them helpful.
- You may feel occasional cramping and lower abdominal pains. This is normal and can feel similar to pre-menstrual discomfort and heaviness. However, if you find they are always present, or you are having any vaginal bleeding or are just concerned, check with your midwife or doctor.
- Your nipples may have grown larger and become darker. You may also find small pimples forming around your areola. These are known as Montgomery’s Tubercles and will help to prepare your nipples for breastfeeding. Don’t squeeze them or try to get rid of them. They have a purpose, unlike the ones which may be cropping up on your face!
- Yes, you could be revisiting your adolescence this week with a fresh outbreak of pimples. Those pregnancy hormones, for all the important work they do, are also responsible for the spots. Be careful what you put on them – some creams are not recommended for use in pregnancy – so read their labels carefully.
Your emotional changes this week
- You may be feeling a bit down this week. The ever-present nausea and tiredness is still hanging around and there isn’t much you can do to alleviate either. Hang in there. Most women find they start feeling a lot better by the end of their first trimester. The countdown has begun.
- You might feel that your partner is not as “into” the pregnancy as you are. His current experience of your pregnancy is through hearing your description of symptoms rather than being able to see much. Avoid interpreting his lack of enthusiasm as being uninterested. For now, the reality of your pregnancy may still be some weeks away for him.
- Some women feel a sense of guilt that they aren’t overcome with maternal love around this time. They worry that the baby may “pick up” on their negative feelings and sense it isn’t the most welcome of guests. Do not fear. Your baby does not have the cognitive ability to know how you are feeling.
- Always feeling tired and exhausted can take its toll. Aim for a simple life and learn to say no to things you simply don’t have the energy for.
Your baby’s changes this week
- Your baby is now 2.5 cm long. This week it’s the size of an average-sized green olive.
- If you have an antenatal appointment this week, your midwife or obstetrician will be able to hear your baby’s heartbeat with a Doppler ultrasound. Have the tissues ready for this is a special time and really brings the reality of your pregnancy home.
- By the start of week 9, your baby’s eyes have grown bigger and even have some pigment (colour) to them. Most babies are born with blue or brown eyes. Your baby’s permanent eye colour will become obvious between 6-9 months and is strongly influenced by the genetics they inherit from you and their dad.
- Your baby’s ears are developing, both inside and out. Inside their mouth is the tiniest of tongues and even their tooth buds are forming in their jaw.
Hints for the week
- Do some research into childbirth education classes this week. You may need to book and there can be waiting lists.
- Think about enrolling in an antenatal exercise or yoga class in your local area. This can be a great way to meet other pregnant mothers and build up a support network of new friends.
- If you are normally a jogger, think about exchanging this for another form of exercise. Repetitive jarring is not ideal during pregnancy and there are other, lower impact ways to exercise.
Week 10 next.