Take Care of You
Your body is going through many changes. You’ve been focusing hard on baby, but it’s important to remember to take care of yourself, too—because when you take care of yourself, you’re also taking care of baby. Remember to keep taking a prenatal vitamin —it can help ensure that you’re getting the important nutrients you and your baby need, even if you’re eating a healthy diet. Don’t forget to stay hydrated and get enough sleep as well. Make sure to set aside some time for you. Go for a long walk, get a pedicure, or go out for a nice dinner. Do something you enjoy to help reduce stress. A happy mom makes for a happy baby.
During this period, both you and baby are developing and changing together. It’s important for you to start or continue with healthy habits while baby hits some major milestones. Nutrition, self-care, and communication with your doctor are becoming increasingly important.
The Sweet Sound of a Beating Heart
Sometime around week 10, your baby will go from being an embryo to a fetus. This is why your second doctor visit will usually occur between the 8th and 12th week. During this visit, the doctor will use a special listening device to project the sound of your baby’s beating heart. They will also check for several other vital measurements—but let’s be honest, the heartbeat is the star of the show.
Nutrition for Mom and Baby
A pregnant woman has special nutrition needs. Your baby is going through a major growth spurt, and you and baby will need energy, vitamins, and minerals to power you through. Remember, what you eat fuels your baby’s growth. ChooseMyPlate.gov is a good starting point for nutrition information for pregnant woman. Be sure to start each day with a healthy breakfast, as empty stomachs can worsen morning sickness symptoms. Try to avoid processed sugars and saturated fats, like those found in foods like soft drinks, desserts, fried foods, cheese, whole milk, and fatty meats. Make the most of the foods you choose by picking nutrient-dense foods, such as fruits and vegetables, and not calorie-dense foods. Always consult your doctor before making major changes to your diet.
Are You “Showing” Your Pregnancy Belly?
It may not be visible to everyone, but during this period many women start to notice their clothes don’t fit the same. After all, your uterus has swelled to the size of a grapefruit. Some women might have a small “bump.” Increased blood flow will give you that famous “pregnancy glow,” but it also protects the blood flow to your baby when you stand up or lay down. So, when you see visible signs of increased blood flow, like more noticeable veins on your hands or feet, you can be reassured it’s for a good reason.
12 Weeks Pregnant: The End of the 1st Trimester Is Around the Corner
Congratulations! Your first trimester of pregnancy is coming to an end. The second trimester is just as exciting, and there are some great milestones along the way. You and baby will grow together during week 12, and you might notice some changes to your body.
Your Digestive System Is Different
Many women experience gas, constipation, bloating, and gastrointestinal discomfort around week 12. The digestive system slows down during this time—which is good for baby but causes changes for your colon. Try to eat more fiber and drink adequate water, 8-10 8-fl-oz glasses per day, during this time to help with bowel movements. Adequate hydration can reduce swelling of feet and ankles, help maintain an even body temperature, and reduce incidence of headaches related to dehydration. The uterus is also on the move, which can send you to the bathroom more often to urinate.
Baby on the Move
With fully formed arms, legs, feet, and hands, your baby will begin to explore newfound movements. He’ll open and close his hands, flex his elbows, and stretch his legs. Even though you may not be able to feel it, he’ll even move when you touch your belly as he begins to develop his reflexes.
Monitor Your Weight Gain During the Trimester
It can be tempting to “eat for two” during pregnancy, but during the 2nd trimester a woman only needs an extra 300-400 healthy calories per day. Be sure to keep track of your weight gain and report any anomalies to your doctor. After your 12th week, you should only gain about a pound per week.