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How Your Baby Grows During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is an exciting journey. Full-term pregnancy for a single baby is 40 weeks, with three trimesters consisting of 12 weeks. Each trimester brings a new development in the baby’s growth. Understanding what happens during every stage can help alleviate some anxiety and better prepare you for what’s to come, especially for first-time moms. Here’s a look of how a baby grows during each trimester.

First Trimester
Although your body might not look too different yet on the outside, there are lots of changes happening on the inside as it starts to prepare for the development of your baby. For starters, the uterus begins to expand to support the growth of the placenta, and the volume of blood begins to increase to support transporting oxygen and nutrients to the baby. By the end of the third month, the fetus will be fully formed with all its organs in place. The hormonal changes may also affect you emotionally and in other physical ways. Some women may experience morning sickness, while others may experience heartburn, swelling or mood swings. You may also notice your breasts changing and becoming more tender. 

Second Trimester
For most pregnant women, the second trimester is easier than the first, and the more severe symptoms usually pass. The big change during the second trimester is that your baby bump gets larger and more visible, and you’ll really start to recognize the little person inside you. For instance, the baby will begin to kick and stretch. The baby’s eyes will begin to open and close and will even be able to hear mom’s voice. At 20 weeks is when you can identify the sex of the baby if you choose to find out.

Third Trimester
During the last phase of pregnancy, you might start to feel some pressure on your organs. This may result in an increased need to urinate, give you trouble sleeping and shortness of breath. As the baby moves lower in the abdomen you may start to experience Braxton-Hicks contractions, which help prepare the body for the actual contractions needed to deliver your baby. Your healthcare provider will closely monitor your blood pressure, baby’s heart rate and your baby’s position to ensure that all is well. 

Throughout each trimester, be sure to voice any concerns and ask your healthcare provider any questions that you have. If you think you might be pregnant and do not yet have a healthcare provider, please call our office to schedule an appointment at 307-634-5216.

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