Pregnancy Week 12
Week 9 – 13
What’s happening to your body?
You are now nearing the end of your first trimester. Your waistline expanding and you are starting to gain some weight. You are also feeling better. Your morning sickness starts to disappear and your energy starts to come back. Apart from your growing bump, life feels normal once again. More importantly, the risk of miscarriage is dramatically reduced by the end of this period.
If you are taking iron supplements, you may get constipated. So drink plenty of water and eat foods high in fibre, such as lentils, citrus fruits and beans.
What’s happening to your baby?
This last four weeksis critical to your baby’s development. It is during this period that your baby’s vital organs are formed.When your baby was first formed, he will have a tail. By the end of the first trimester, his tail starts to shrink and he starts to look more human. His kidneys, gallbladder and pancreas are alsoformed and functioning. This is also the time when your baby begins to form his or her gender. However, it is still not possible to tell whether your baby is a girl or a boy.
At the end of the 12th week, your baby will already have fingernails and he starts to suck his fist. His head is twice as big as his body and his eyes are already formed, but they are still close. By the end of the 13th week, the risk of defects in your baby is reduced.
Appointments and Tests
As soon as you find out you are pregnant, see the health professionals so they can monitor your pregnancy. During your appointment, your doctor or midwife may schedule you for a “dating” scan. This is an ultrasound scan that assesses the size of your uterus and the baby. It also verifies how far you are in your pregnancy.
You may also have to submit to a lot of blood tests to establish your blood group and check for hepatitis B and C virus, rubella immunity and AIDS. You may also be tested for diabetes.