Baby development at 8 weeks pregnant
At this point in your pregnancy, you’re most likely still not showing outwardly to the world. However, pregnancy has most definitely become a real part of your day, from the early symptoms of pregnancy to the small changes in lifestyle that you’re likely starting to make.
Your baby is 0.5 to 0.63 inches (2.7 millimeters) long after eight weeks of gestation. This means your baby is roughly the size of a gummy bear.
Baby has now developed eyelids, lips and a nose. Even though you can’t feel it yet, your baby is starting to move around. During the eighth week of pregnancy, you will most likely see the first images of your baby and even get to hear their little heartbeat! Your baby’s heartbeat will be very fast, typically averaging anywhere between 140 and 180 beats per minute. The features that are beginning to develop may not be obvious on an ultrasound, but your baby will look more human each visit.
Week 8 pregnant belly
At week eight of pregnancy, you may begin to show a little bump, although some women may not until later. Try not to compare your pregnancy to others — no two pregnancy journeys are exactly the same.
Common pregnancy symptoms at 8 weeks
At eight weeks pregnant, pregnancy hormones are in full swing. Some of those symptoms from weeks six and seven of pregnancy may have intensified in week eight. If you didn’t have any noticeable symptoms during those early weeks of pregnancy, you may just now be starting to experience them.
- Acne breakouts: Those increased hormones we keep talking about can also lead to acne breakouts. When trying to keep your skin clear, talk to your health care provider about what products are safe to use during pregnancy.
- Constipation: Along with an increase in progesterone, your body also releases the hormone relaxin, which helps relax the muscles in your body and contributes to constipation in some women during pregnancy. Drink plenty of fluids and eat fiber-rich fruits and vegetables to find relief.
- Strange pregnancy dreams: Experiencing a whole new kind of dream now that you’re pregnant? Yup, this is totally normal as well. While there isn’t research that explains what causes these dreams, it is a common symptom that many women report having during their pregnancy.
- Increased vaginal discharge: This is another completely normal side effect of those increased hormones. Not every woman will experience this symptom during pregnancy. If you do, expect a thicker, milky white discharge.
- Frequent urination: Your expanding uterus is crowding your insides even more during week eight. As your pregnancy progresses, your bladder will continue to have less and less room. This can increase the frequency of urges to use the restroom.
- Fatigue: You may experience fatigue frequently during your first trimester of pregnancy. Hormones, increased blood production and the emotional weight of carrying new life are all factors.
- Tender breasts: You may have noticed tender breasts as one of the earliest symptoms of pregnancy, and it may continue until you give birth. Your nipples may be sticking out farther than usual, and you may notice that you have darker areolas -- these changes will make it easier for your newborn to latch on at mealtime once they arrive. You may also have noticed that the veins in your chest area are starting to be more prominent due to increased blood flow.
- Cramping and spotting: It’s very normal to experience some level of cramping and/or spotting at any time during early pregnancy. While these may be concerning, remain calm and remember this is normal. If you experience spotting that would fill more than a panty liner or any level of discomfort in relation to cramping, it’s a good idea to call your health care provider.
Pregnancy checklist at 8 weeks pregnant
At eight weeks pregnant, you may be just finding out the news. Call your health care provider to schedule your first prenatal visit. Your first visit will likely take place between eight and 10 weeks pregnant. If you’ve known for a while, you may be heading to your first prenatal visit this week!
- Schedule your 12-week prenatal visit. Do you love sushi? Are you an athlete? Now is a good time to ask what day-to-day activities you can maintain and which activities should be limited or cut out.
- Decide when to share the news with friends and family. Whether you’ve already told a few people or haven’t told anyone, now is a good time to connect with your partner and decide how you want to announce the baby on the way.
- Start keeping track of your weight. Up until now, you may not have gained much weight — or any at all. On average, women gain between 25 and 35 pounds while pregnant. Keep track of how you are doing to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
- Allow nap time. Are you exhausted? Take a nap! Your body is working overtime while building a human! Allow yourself to take a nap. You won’t regret the extra sleep.
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