Baby development at 9 weeks pregnant
You are now entering your third month of pregnancy! Week nine marks the time your embryo is officially referred to as a fetus. From here on out, your baby will start looking more and more baby-like.
Your baby may measure 0.6 to 0.7 inches long (15.25 millimeters). At nine weeks pregnant, your baby is about the size of a Jolly Rancher hard candy.
Thanks to recent muscle development, your baby has been moving, but baby isn’t quite big enough for you to feel these movements yet. You’ll notice these movements during your second trimester. Week nine is also when you can start to see the baby’s toes. What you can’t see is the almost complete development of your baby’s heart, making it strong enough to hear with a fetal doppler. Bones and muscles are also forming throughout the body.
Common pregnancy symptoms at 9 weeks
If you’ve made it this far without severe pregnancy symptoms, you might be fortunate enough to wrap up your first trimester without experiencing any! You may be feeling tired and nauseated and notice that your clothes are feeling a bit snug around the midsection. Hang in there! Relief is in sight. If you are starting to tire of the nausea, don’t fear — you are entering your final weeks of the first trimester.
- Morning sickness: Nausea during pregnancy can strike at any time, not just the morning. Women experience varying levels of nausea, from mild discomfort to full-on vomiting when triggered by things that aren’t normally irritating, including the smell or sight of certain foods.
- Mood swings: You’re building a human and experiencing a lot of rapid changes. Between morning sickness and the increased hormones, you’re not your normal self. Take it easy and try to get some extra sleep in when you can.
- Weight gain: In your first trimester of pregnancy, doctors recommend gaining 1 to 4 pounds. Don’t worry if you’re not exactly within this range, though.
- Increased hunger: You may start to notice a small increase in your appetite around the ninth week of pregnancy. Be prepared with healthy, easy-to-access snacks — and remember, there is no need to eat for two. Doctors recommend only adding an additional 300 calories per day during your second and third trimesters.
- Constipation: The hormone relaxin is released during pregnancy to help relax your body, which causes constipation in some women. Paying careful attention to your diet and fluid intake (don’t forget the fiber!) can help alleviate these symptoms.
- Increased vaginal discharge: A thick, milky white discharge is common during pregnancy. It’s another side effect of increased hormones and isn’t cause for concern.
- Frequent urination: As your uterus expands, your bladder has less room. This shift can lead to an increased need to urinate and frequent trips to the bathroom for many pregnant women.
- Fatigue: Fatigue is likely to be most intense during the first trimester of pregnancy, though it can occur at any time. Remember, your body is working overtime to support your baby’s development.
- Mild cramping: During this time of rapid uterine growth and internal changes, you may experience some mild cramping. If you are feeling anything more than mild symptoms, it’s a good idea to call your health care provider to rule out any problems.
Pregnancy checklist at 9 weeks pregnant
If you’re starting to see the fog clear and can get back into your old groove, now is a good time to reestablish the routines and good habits you had before pregnancy!
Reminders for the week:
- Don’t forget your first prenatal appointment. At nine weeks pregnant, you may be heading to your first prenatal visit. Your first visit will likely take place between eight and 10 weeks pregnant. If you haven’t yet, call your doctor to schedule your first appointment.
- Hit the gym. You don’t have to go all-out, but exercise is safe and beneficial during the entire pregnancy for most women. Now is a great time to talk to your doctor about good workout options.
- Look into maternity leave options. You may not be ready to let your employer know that you are expecting, but now is a good time to read up on what maternity leave your company offers, if any.
- Get on a prenatal vitamin regimen. Make sure you’re getting enough folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, choline, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins and vitamin C. These are key nutrients that you and your baby need throughout your pregnancy.
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