Pregnancy Week Nine
When you get to the ninth week of your pregnancy, you've entered the last third of the first trimester. In approximately four weeks' time, you're pregnancy will enter its exciting second stage, with all the new experiences that it will bring. For the time being, you'll want to know what you can expect in week nine.
What Your Baby Looks Like
The ninth week marks the beginning of your third month. From this stage onwards, your baby is no longer an embryo, but a fetus. He is growing more and more, towards the size of an apple, which he'll probably achieve at around the end of the third month (week 12). "He" might be the wrong pronoun to use, however, because perhaps by this stage, and certainly by the end of the month, your baby's sex organs will be visible during an ultrasound examination. If you want, you can ask your doctor to tell you baby's gender. Starting now and over the course of the next four weeks, your baby will develop a neck and some hair on his head, as well as taste buds and soft finger and toe nails.
Tests your doctor will carry out, perhaps in week nine or perhaps a little further on in the third month, will include a Doppler ultrasound test which will allow you to hear your baby's heartbeat. Remember that babies develop at different rates in the uterus so it may be that your baby's heart beat won't be audible at this stage. Your doctor will let you know if there is anything to worry about.
New Pregnancy Symptoms
New pregnancy symptoms which may develop from the ninth week onwards include an increase in appetite and visible veins beneath your skin as the blood supply to your abdomen and legs increases to help your body nurture the fetus. As your baby's growth increases, you should also find that you put on some weight. Doctors recommend that you put on three or four pounds by the end of this month of your pregnancy. Don't worry if you have had these symptoms even in previous weeks, or if they haven't yet affected you. Remember that different pregnant women experience different pregnancy symptoms at different stages of their pregnancies. Don't panic if your symptoms don't fit the textbook description, but do speak to your doctor if any of your symptoms are severe - particularly if you have vaginal bleeding.
Continuing Pregnancy Symptoms
Some symptoms you've probably been experiencing in earlier weeks may continue into week nine of your pregnancy and beyond. These include:
Needing to urinate frequently
Feeling tired and needing to sleep a lot
More vaginal discharge than before
Constipation and other problems of the digestive system, including heartburn, diarrhea and flatulence
Food cravings or aversions
Changes in the breasts (increase in size, differences of color, soreness)
Faintness or dizziness
Tightening waistband as your baby's growth speeds up, you begin to eat more and, as a result, your pre-pregnancy clothes become too small.