How Your Baby Grows Inside You: Week 5
We totally get that you can’t contain your excitement but at week 5 your pregnancy is still pretty initial. Your baby is still very tiny – just around 3.3mm long which is about the size of a grain of rice! Clinically speaking, at this stage your baby is basically just three layers – the ectoderm, the mesoderm and the endoderm. And before you start to get bogged down by all the medical jargon, allow us to simplify these term for you. After all, you deserve to know everything about the wonderful things that your body is capable of!
The ectoderm, which is the top most layer at this stage, will develop into the brain, spinal cord, nerves and the backbone. The middle layer or the mesoderm will eventually form the heart, the circulatory system, the muscles, cartilages and bones. The third layer - the endoderm, will form the lungs, intestines, urinary system, thyroid, liver and the pancreas.
The placenta and the umbilical cord (the organs that nourish your baby) have already started functioning and are delivering oxygen and other nutrients to your baby. They are also responsible for removing waste matter which is returned to your blood (the mother’s blood) for excretion.
By the end of this week, your baby will resemble a tiny little tadpole. We know it’s hard to imagine your baby that way but be assured; she/he will resemble a tiny human pretty soon.
By now any test can confirm your pregnancy although your baby bump will still not show. You may continue wearing your pre-pregnancy clothes as long as you feel comfortable in them. It’s even ok to sleep on your stomach at this time as the uterus and baby are still deep down in the pelvic cavity. Again, it is best if you go with the flow and let your pregnancy take its natural course without worrying too much!
Signs and Symptoms
Your pregnancy hormones are now raging, as your body works hard to make your baby. It is at this time that you might experience morning sickness which is symptomized by nausea, vomiting and tiredness. This condition affects 8 out of every 10 women during pregnancy, so don’t worry too much if you experience the same.
Another heads up! Morning sickness can strike at any time of the day or the entire day, so it feels more like an anytime sickness.
Usually, particular foods or smells can trigger nausea and vomiting. Try and identify these triggers for yourself and stay away from them. You might want to keep some dry toast or crackers handy to nibble on, as this makes the stomach feel more settled. Many women have also shared that dry ginger flakes help keep nausea at bay.
You need not worry too much about your baby if you are throwing up often. Your baby is still very tiny and is well nourished by the nutrients from your bodily reserves. Try to est your parat as healthy a diet as possible and eat small, frequent meals to keep your energy levels high.
You may feel increasingly cranky, irritable or emotional for no reason. With your pregnancy hormones at their furious best, it’s natural for you to have mood swings. Much to the plight of your partner!
It may be tough to explain your behaviour to those at the receiving end but take few deep breaths and distract yourself. Trust your partner to understand what you are going through. (Partners, take note!!) Wind down with something you like doing, such as listening to music, reading a novel or chatting up with your dear ones.
- If you find that you are unable to keep any food down, inform your doctor. Severe vomiting could be an indication of a condition called hypermesis gravidarum which needs medical intervention!
- Its surely time to quit smoking now if you haven’t already. Infact, even passive smoking must be avoided from now on.
- Exposure to chemicals around the house and at work must also be limited. Avoid beauty treatments which involve chemicals or cleaning with strong disinfectants or acids.
- Make sure you discuss all your concerns with your doctor at the first prenatal visit. Also share your complete medical history with the doctor so that your care can be planned appropriately.
- If you have a pet and especially a cat, avoid changing the litter box as you could contract infections such as toxoplasmosis, which spreads through pet litter.
Old Wives' tales
If you’ve broken the news of your pregnancy to your family, they might insist that you eat for two. Indulgence might feel good but it can make you put on some undesirable weight. Fact is, you don’t need to eat any more than your usual requirement in the first trimester. So eat healthy and eat wisely.
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