Your Pregnancy Week 13
Reviewed by James Brann, MD
Your BabyBy pregnancy week 13 your tiny baby may be over 3 inches long and weigh almost .8 of an ounce! There is still plenty of growing your baby will undergo as you continue your pregnancy week by week.
Changes in Your Growing BabyThough your baby is much larger than he was when he started just a few weeks ago, by 13 weeks pregnant your little munchkin is still pretty tiny. Despite that your baby looks fully formed, with a head, arms, legs and complete torso. Your baby's head won't look quite as disproportionate to the rest of his body. By this time your baby's liver will start producing insulin, a lifesaving hormone that will help your baby regulate his blood sugar as he grows and develops.
Your baby's eyes will also start moving from the sides of his head to their final destination at the front of your baby's face.
Your Body's DevelopmentYour uterus is expanding even further. This sometimes causes some discomfort or mild cramping. Some women experience what is referred to as round ligament pain. This pain while sometimes alarming is usually harmless. If you experience round ligament pain you may feel a short or brief sharp and stabbing pain along one side of your abdomen or the other. This usually happens when a woman is shifting positions quickly, say moving from her side to her back or getting up suddenly.
Most round ligament pain will disappear in a few minutes. If you notice pain that is accompanied by other symptoms including bleeding, omitting or cramping you should contact your health care provider immediately. This may be a sign that something more serious is occurring. Typically however round ligament pain is brief and easily relieved by simply relaxing or resting for a moment. It often serves as an important reminder for pregnant women to slow things down while pregnant.
Changes in Your BodyYou deserve a huge pat on the back! You are now entering your second trimester. Pregnancy week 13 is definitely a time to cheer. Your risk for miscarriage drops significantly.
While it is to early for maternity clothes, you are probably ready to move into a pair of sweat pants for a short time.
Aside from your growing belly you may start noticing bumps forming on your breasts. These bumps are glands that help the breasts grow and develop during pregnancy.
You may also find that your libido and energy start returning. Most women consider the second trimester the honeymoon phase of their pregnancy.
Take advantage of your increasingly good spirits and energy level and invest in a little comfy lingerie or new bra for yourself. Many women find the increased blood flowing throughout their body heightens their sense of pleasure and ecstasy during intercourse.
Work and PregnancyFor most women, it's safe to continue to work when they are pregnant. This may be tough to do in the first trimester, especially if you are battling fatigue and morning sickness. Fortunately now, you should be feeling much better.
Depending on your occupation, you may need to make certain modifications now that you're expecting. For example, if your job requires you to stand for long periods of time, or you must do heavy lifting, you are at higher risk for a number of complications - such as premature delivery, high blood pressure in pregnancy, and giving birth to a low birth weight baby. If your job is particularly strenuous, or you must work irregular or excessively long hours, you should talk to your supervisor on how to best accommodate your pregnancy.
Though you may want to save up your sick and vacation days for your maternity leave, you must take into consideration how you're feeling and the needs of your baby. If you are absolutely worn out and you need to take a sick day, please do. You don't want to do anything that could jeopardize your baby's health.
Video: What to Expect from the 13th Week of Pregnancy
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