What’s It Like?
If you find your moods altering greatly, no need to worry, this is a normal part of this time of the pregnancy. And if you have already started morning sickness, it may become more intense.
Stress can make morning sickness worse, as well as increase fatigue, indigestion and the chances of developing back and neck pain and headaches. So make sure that you schedule time to relax – it will help you and the baby.
Your Baby’s Growth
- Body Size
Your baby is still a tiny creature measuring between 0.07 to 0.20 inches (2 to 5 millimeters), or about the size of a grain of rice.
- Internal Organs
The embryo continues to develop rapidly. In the sixth week of pregnancy, it has a tadpole shape, the head and tail being clear and distinct. Now, the process of forming organs begins. The already beating heart develops further and the vital organs become more and more complex. The digestive pathways are outlined, as well as the spine, lungs, kidneys and the abdominal cavities.
- Body Appearance
Small buds on the body begin to emerge in the sixth week of pregnancy. From them, the arms of your baby will develop later on. The buds for the legs will also appear in the next weeks. Measuring almost a quarter from his or her body, your baby’s head has distinguishable eyes, nose and a very vaguely shaped mouth. The internal ears and the tongue start to take shape as well.
This week, the link between you and your baby has been stabilized. The placenta acts as a bridge between uterus and baby, providing all the necessary nutrients and the oxygen. The umbilical cord is not yet complete.
What Happens Inside Your Body?
- Frequent Urination
Shortly after you become pregnant, hormonal changes cause blood to flow more quickly through your kidneys, filling your bladder more often. What’s more, over the course of your pregnancy the amount of blood in your body rises until you have almost 50 percent more than before you got pregnant. This leads to a lot of extra fluid getting processed through your kidneys and ending up in your bladder. Eventually, you may also feel pressure on your bladder from your growing uterus, which further compounds the problem.
- Fatigue And Sleep
You might feel overwhelming fatigue and mood swings, which can cause depression and anxiety. Besides that, you may have more difficulty falling and staying asleep. Whether fatigue or insomnia, do not taking sleeping pills. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t deemed any sleeping medications completely safe for pregnant women. There are some such as Benadryl (found in many over-the-counter sleep aids) and Ambien, which are presumed safe on the basis of animal trials, although more research is needed to fully understand their risks. Try to relax in other ways such as a massage, slow music or aromatherapy. (Related Article: 8 Energizing Ways To Combat Fatigue)
If absent so far, morning sickness is more likely to begin or become more intense. You may become extra sensitive to certain tastes and smells, causing you to gag. (Related Article: 5 Natural Home Remedies For Nausea, No More Nausea: 4 Foods That Will Relieve You)
- High Basal Body Temperature (BBT)
Your body’s temperature increases during this week. It is not a sign of illness – just the intense hormonal activity taking place.
How Different Will You Look?
The most obvious change will likely be your breasts, which will become larger and feel tighter. In addition, the skin around your nipples may darken further and the areolas will increase in size. You may notice your waist becoming slightly thicker – on average women gain about 5 lbs throughout the whole trimester. Try not to worry about gaining weight – its best to focus on eating healthily rather than how much weight you gain.
How Can You Care For Both Of Your Loved Ones?
You may notice your partner is tetchy (do Americans use the word tetchy….I had to Google that word) and nauseous. Not the greatest combination for either of you! The best thing for you to do is to try and help her with morning sickness. You may want to try bringing her one of the remedies that help, whether its dry crackers, chamomile tea, or pretzels. Ginger has been found to help with nausea, so you can try ginger ale, ginger tea, candied ginger or ginger beer. (not more than 1gram a day of ginger)
Your partner may not want to cook or do her regular housework. Try and be as supportive as possible – this can be a challenging time during the pregnancy.
Tips To Help You Go Through Trimester
- Take Special Care Of Yourself. The beginning of the pregnancy is one of the most critical times for the baby. In the first trimester, birth defects or miscarriage are most common. For this reason, please take extra care of yourself! Spotting (spots of blood on your underpants) is relatively common in early pregnancy, affecting up to a quarter of pregnant women. It may occur in a normal pregnancy, but it could be a sign of something more serious, so if you have any spotting, severe abdominal pain or severe cramps, call your doctor immediately.
- Be Careful With The Counter-Medications: Many, e.g. ibuprofen, which is sold under brand names of Advil or Motrin, are classed as a pregnancy risk by the FDA. If you must take a painkiller, studies say that the safest is Tylenol.
- Emergency Snacks: To minimize morning sickness, eat frequent small meals and always keep an emergency snack of a banana or crackers in your purse so you aren’t caught empty-handed.
- Exercise Regularly: It’s a good idea to stay active throughout pregnancy. You can try jogging, swimming, walking or even a prenatal yoga classes, but get your doctor, midwife or obstetrician’s approval first. If nothing else, go to bed an hour earlier than usual. Your body definitely needs all the rest it can for it to nourish and support a new life.
The sixth week of pregnancy is a time of abrupt hormonal changes and the time when morning sickness is most likely to start. Be careful and research all over-the-counter medications – many are classed as a pregnancy risk by the FDA. While the physical changes to your body are only beginning, its important to take extra care of your body during this critical time of pregnancy.