Week 12 guide – healthy pregnancy for healthy baby

Weeks 4-12

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are in your first trimester, you are keen for a healthy pregnancy. Changes are taking place in your body, in preparation for your baby to be! You could experience rapid mood changes. You suffer bloating and stomach cramps At week 5 you will have your fisrt missed period.

Baby size

Pregnancy week 12 guide - baby size
What to expect
Your baby will grow from the size of a tiny, Sesame seed (about 2 mm long) to the size of a Plum (about 5 cm long) at week 12 (and is roughly as heavy as 3 grapes).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Your baby-to-be is only two layers of cells has found a home in your uterus! It has made a physical connection to your body for the next eight months. The amniotic sac or bag of waters has also, formed around it. Your baby-to-be is only two layers of cells , has found a home in your uterus!

Taking care

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Tips
  • Make sure you have enough Vitamin D supplies.
  • Have Iron tablet supplements.
  • Find out your due date
  • Avoid spending time near somebody who smokes.
  • Do some light low-impact exercises
  • Have a wholesome diet – oily fish, eggs, nuts and flak seeds. If you are not enjoying eggs substitute with soy, dal, beans and grain. Milk with youghurt or vegetables with fruit.
  • Schedule an antenatal appointment

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. What medications can I take or should not take now?
  2. When do I have my first Scan?
  3. Does my family history or any issue make pregnancy high -risk for me?
  4. I get constipated when I take Iron tablets. What can I do?
  5. Do I need to change my eating habits?
  6. What medications can i take or should not take?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Take Folic acid and Iron supplement tablets.
  2. Find out about maternity benefits and employment rights at workplace.
  3. Inquire about government programmes for pregnant women and maternal health.
  4. Check blood pressure.
  5. Check weight.
  6. Schedule antenatal appointment with GP.

Questions you may have

“You may have gained a few pounds. Know from your doctor how much weight to gained in a healthy pregnancy. You could experience belly cramps. Cramping is normal during the first trimester. You could also have skin issues – too much oiliness or too dry. Fruits give you essential vitamins and nutrients.

 

“It’s totally up to you! If you feel comfortable telling people now then go for it.”

“Having a healthy baby is what is most important. At this stage you cannot find out. By law it is illegal to have a sex determination test during pregnancy.”

For prenatal consultations either an OB-GYNae doctor or trained and certified midwife.What kind of person are you – do you believe that you should have a say about your body and your health and are entitled to ask questions and your doctor respects this? Or do you take comfort putting your care in the hands of a medical professional who you believe knows best? Once you have thought through this with and discussed with your husband. Accordingly, select your practitioner by taking recommendations from your GP and your friends who have had babies. Interview 1-2 practitioners before deciding.

Pregnancy week 13 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are nearing the end of the first trimester. You may have an increased sense of smell. Luckily, from now on you are less likely to feel nausea, painful breasts and nipples, food aversions or fatigue. You will less of an urge to go to the bathroom frequently. The down side is that you may have dizzy spells and low sex drive.

Baby size

Week 13 size guide
What to expect
Your baby is as big as a Lime (20 cms long and 20 gums in weight).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby is fully formed with organs, muscles, limbs and bones in place! It is too early though for you to feel your baby’s movements. Your baby has doubled in size and is a half ounce in weight compared to the previous week.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Make sure you have your Iron tablets.
  • Take plenty of water and stay hydrated.
  • Avoid raw seafood and fish with higher levels of mercury.
  • Do pelvic exercises.
  • You may have a white milky vaginal discharge. This is normal.
  • Have a wholesome diet – oily fish, eggs, nuts and flak seeds. If you are not enjoying eggs substitute with soy, dal, beans and grain. Milk with youghurt or vegetables with fruit. Avoid raw or uncooked paneer.
  • Try to stay a healthy weight and not overweight.
  • Know about all the laboratory tests and investigations that you may need.
  • You may wonder whether your belly should be bigger or smaller. Try not to compare yourself with other pregnant women!

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. What medications can I take or should not take?
  2. Does my family history or any other issue make pregnancy high-risk for me?
  3. I get constipated when I take Iron tablets. What can I do?
  4. Do I need to change my eating habits?
  5. What medications can I take or should not take now?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
1. Take folic and iron supplement tablets. 2. Take a confirmatory pregnancy test. 3. Schedule visit to GP.

Questions you may have

“It is totally upto you. I told my very close friend who I can trust and feel comfortable with. She is experienced and I value her advice.”

 

“I made sure that I took some time out every day to relax. I spent it listening to the radio or music. I would read magazines.

Pregnancy week 14 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are completing your first trimester. You feel your energy levels coming back. A little bump is starting to show! Hopefully, your morning sickness may be coming to an end.

Baby size

Week 14 size guide
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a Narangi (about 80 – 85 mm long and 85 gms).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby is moving constantly. He/she can stand up straight! Development is taking place, with hair growth and functioning kidney allowing for the passage of urine.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Do gentle pelvic floor exercises
  • Take advantage of your burst of energy! Get light to moderate exercise. This helps reduce chances of gestational diabetes.
  • You should be measuring your weight regularly. If you started on an average weight you would have gained about 5.5 – 6 Kgs by now.
  • Eat regularly – small amounts every 2 hours. Eat slowly – starting meals with water.
  • Have fresh food – they provide more vitamins and minerals.
  • Stay cool – wear loose clothes

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. How safe is it to take medication? Can I take pain relievers?
  2. I have a sick mother-in-law at home. What precautions do I need to take when caring for her?
  3. I feel very fatigued. Is that common in the second trimester?
  4. I have noticed light spotting. Is that natural?
  5. Do I need to take special pregnancy vitamins?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Find out about your maternity rights and benefits at your workplace.
  2. Find out about available government programmes for pregnant women and maternal health.
  3. Get blood pressure checked.
  4. Get weight checked.

Questions you may have

“It is totally upto you. I told my very close friend who I can trust and feel comfortable with. She is experienced and I value her advice.”

 

“I made sure that I took some time out every day to relax. I spent it listening to the radio or music. I would read magazines.

Pregnancy week 18 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are starting to feel a little clumsy as your belly has gone bigger. Your breasts may also have gone up a size. You notice a blackish line down your stomach. This is normal skin pigmentation and nothing to worry about. You are likely to complain of backaches and pains.

Baby size

Week 18 size guide
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a small Cucumber (roughly 13-14 cms long and 180 – 190 gms).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Your baby is keen to hear. Talk to your baby! Baby is fully developing as either a girl or boy and his/her nervous system is maturing rapidly. Baby can now yawn and have hiccups.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Your blood pressure gets a little lower than it usually is. Don’t get up abruptly from a chair or sofa as you could feel dizzy. 
  • Don’t compare the size of your belly with other pregnant women. It varies from person to person. Just make sure all is going well at your antenatal check-ups.
  • Use a foot rest to raise your feet slightly when resting. It helps with back pain.
  • When standing, place one foot on a low stool when possible to take some pressure off your lower back.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, combat constipation with added fiber, and avoid straining when you go to the bathroom.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. Is my weight gain okay?
  2. Am I at high risk for any problems during pregnancy?
  3. My feet and ankles are swelling up. Is that okay?
  4. Is my baby’s growth okay?

Your to do list

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Action points
  1. Have a foot stool to raise feet.
  2. Have folic acid supplement and prenatal vitamins.
  3. Book antenatal appointment with doctor.
  4. Share with others your feelings and talk about what is happening to your body.

Questions you may have

“I could not feel my baby move at 18 weeks. My doctor told me it is completely normal. She also told to not try to count my baby's movements until at least 30 or 31 weeks!”

“I was offered a scan called an anomaly scan for my doctor to look at my baby in detail to see if there is anything unusual about his/her development and appearance. I was also told that I don’t need to have it if I don’t want to.”

Pregnancy week 19 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are nearly at the half way point! Getting tired easily from lack of sleep and carrying extra weight is common. You may feel more hungry than usual. You may also be getting leg cramps that cause disturbed sleep. Drink lots of water as you could be prone to urinary tract infections, so keep an eye for it.

Baby size

Week 19 size guide
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a Mango (about 15 cms long and 240 gms in weight).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby's lungs are developing and adult teeth are starting to grow. There is a white greasy coating (Vernix) on your baby now which helps regulate body temperature and protects his/her skin. Your baby is fattening up!

Taking care

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Tips
  • Talk about any feelings you are having about your pregnancy. It is normal to have some worries and fears.
  • Do light exercise and not overwork yourself. You should be able to talk comfortably when you are carrying out any day to day activity (Talk test). If not, check with your doctor.
  • Practise ‘beditation’ – a combination of meditation and stretch exercises when you get into bed. It will help you fall asleep.
  • Try keeping a pillow between your knees when you sleep. That can help with pain.
  • Avoid lifting heavy loads. Ask others to help you. If you absolutely have to, assume a wide stance, bend at the knees and not at the waist and slowly lift with your arms and legs and not waist.

For information week by week you can click here.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. I have a white discharge. Is that yeast infection? What is the best treatment?
  2. I need to go to the bathroom very often and I get a burning sensation. Do I have urinary infection?
  3. My nipples are leaking. Is that normal?
  4. I have been feeling low and off mood lately. What should I do?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Have folic acid supplement and prenatal vitamins.
  2. Book antenatal appointment.
  3. Practice ‘beditation’
  4. Come up with a birthing plan.

Questions you may have

“It is not unusual to have some worries and fears. Don’t put too much expectation on yourself. Be realistic about what you can do. Relax when you need to. Spend time with others who make you feel relaxed and good about yourself. 1 in 10 pregnant women experience some form of depression. Talk to other expectant mothers. If you are feeling constantly bad or your mood is coming in the way of your day to day functioning talk to your GP.”

If you are concerned about COVID - 19 and would like to know more, please click here.

“I cried at the silliest of things! I went to the shops, saw baby clothes and started crying! It is common to have mood swings and get emotional. It’s those pregnancy hormones!”

Pregnancy week 21 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are beginning to look very pregnant! You may see stretch marks all over your stomach, hips and breasts. You feel unsure on your feet and may lose your balance as your bump gets bigger. You will have an increased appetite too. Feeling anxious is common – the responsibilities of an expectant mother can be overwhelming.

Baby size

Week 21 size guide
What to expect
Your baby is a s big as a large Banana (roughly 25 cms long and 350 gms in weight).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Your baby is moving around a lot now! The arms and legs are in proportion and movements are coordinated. He/she has learnt how to sleep and tastes what you eat – spicy, sweet!

Taking care

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Tips
  • Do pelvic floor exercises – this will help strengthen muscles and ligaments and prevent leakages later when you cough, laugh, cry….
  • Have frequent healthy snacks.
  • Drink plenty of water and have high fibre foods – to prevent gassiness and constipation.
  • Get gentle back massages for backache.
  • Talk about your feelings with family members and friends who have had a baby. – it is quite normal to feel anxious.
  • Discuss your fears about pregnancy and motherhood with your husband.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. Why am I having such swollen feet?
  2. Is it okay to do gentle yoga exercises?
  3. What should be my weight gain target?
  4. Is it okay to do hair removal or beauty treatments?
  5. Do I have to continue with my iron supplement tablets?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Express feelings with husband and ask for his support.
  2. Take a 30 minute walk each day.
  3. Record weight and blood pressure on the Kushal app.
  4. Schedule a week 21 ultrasound.

Questions you may have

“1 in 2 pregnant women generally feel anxiety at this stage. It is common. I was asked not to get worried about worrying! I spoke to a close friend about her experience when she was pregnant. That helped.”

“I felt the same! It’s because our baby is growing rapidly in size and our muscles which help with balance are relaxing to provide space. I also find it difficult to do things that I like doing – sleeping on my belly!”

Pregnancy week 22 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
Your body in week 22 - You are likely to be quite preoccupied with your body – those aches and pains! Your breasts may start to leak a little pre- milk – this is normal. You may also see some skin changes – darkening around your nipples and dark patches on your skin. Piles and haemorrhoids are not uncommon and can be painful.To know what changes take place week by week click here.

Baby size

Week 22 size image
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a Bell pepper/Capsicum (roughly 27 cms long and 410 gms in weight).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby listens eagerly and tries to make out the different sounds. He/she now knows the difference between light and dark. Shine a torch on your belly and see the reaction! Baby keeps grabbing his or her tinny ears. The lungs are developing in preparation to breathe once born.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Have frequent health snacks like fruit and cut up and cleaned vegetables – helps to cope with your increased appetite.
  • Try to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day – helps prevent dizziness.
  • Exercise regularly and encourage bowel movements to prevent constipation.
  • Make sure you are having your prenatal vitamins.
  • Get to know your baby – try to identify baby’s different movements – kick, punch or hiccup? That will help cheer you up.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. Do I need a whooping cough vaccination?
  2. Should I add a magnesium supplement to my diet?
  3. I am getting a lot of aches and pains. Is that normal?
  4. I notice some spotting and am having pain. What should I do?
  5. Is everything okay with my pregnancy? Do I need to be concerned about anything?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Make sure you have some relaxation time. Watch your favourite TV shows – not just think and talk about your pregnancy.
  2. Do not sit or stand for long periods of time or keep your legs crossed.
  3. Record your weight and blood pressure on the Kushal app.
  4. Learn some soothing yoga based relaxation techniques.

Questions you may have

“I was told it is quite common and happens because of the changes going on in my body. Becoming dehydrated is also a common cause of dizziness. If it carries on for long check with your doctor to rule out anaemia. Low blood sugar is not common and is easily manageable.”

For questions related to COVID, please click here.

“It could be your uterus is practising for delivery! These are called Braxton-Hicks contractions and they are not dangerous.”

Pregnancy week 23 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
As your bump grows you might be feeling increasingly anxious. You may also seem to forget things easily – often referred to as pregnancy brain! You may start to get rib pain as your rib cage expands and your breasts could leak colostrum. Colostrum is the first milk you produce after giving birth, which is thick and usually a golden yellow colour and essential to help your baby fight off infections. If you notice dark pigmentation in your skin, it could be sunburn.

Baby size

Week 23 - size guide
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a Grapefruit (roughly 28 cms long and 475 gms).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby is practising breathing and his/her heartbeat can be heard with a stethoscope. Baby also  begins to rapidly gain weight and kicks around a lot. You will notice your tummy moving! Baby’s brain is developing and he/she starts recognising your voice.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Practise relaxation techniques to overcome your pregnancy worries – yoga is a good de-stressor.
  • Slide a pillow between your legs and rest with your knees bent when you sleep – this should give you a good night’s rest.
  • Keep a bottle or glass of water always by your side.
  • Make sure you are getting your extra dose of vitamins and iron supplement
  • Avoid face makeup with chemicals to cover any dark discolouration that you may get. These disappear automatically a few months after delivery.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. I get tired very easily; feel weak, breathless and dizzy. What is the problem?
  2. I get a lot of upper back pain. What should I do?
  3. How do I stop the burning sensation I get when I go the bathroom?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Book antenatal appointment with your doctor.
  2. Have my iron supplement and prenatal vitamins
  3. Have 8 glasses of water a day.
  4. Make sure to have an extra pillow between your legs when you go to sleep.

Questions you may have

“I was advised to try to give up the habit of drinking tea and coffee. Too much tea or coffee in pregnancy is linked to miscarriage and low birth weight. If you can’t give up, try not to have more than two cups of tea a day!”

“That is because of your baby kicking and moving. It is a sign that baby is well!”

Pregnancy week 24 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
 Aches and pains appear anywhere in your body – that's because baby is moving a lot. You are likely to be putting on weight – your baby is growing! Belly may be big enough for you to have a protruding naval! You could be having sleepless nights and may not have enough desire for sexual intimacy.

Baby size

Week 24 baby size
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a large Pomegranate (about 30 cms long and 575 gms in weight).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby if born now can survive outside the womb  with the right support! However, your baby still needs you and has to be nurtured in your belly for another three months. His/her arms, legs and head are in proportion. He/she responds to soothing voices when your husband or you rub your belly.

Taking care

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Tips
  • Try natural remedies for sleep like meditation or hot milk before bed.
  • Avoid sleeping on your hands so that you don’t get swollen and painful wrists.
  • Straighten your legs and move your ankles and toes in circular movements to avoid cramps.
  • Soak your hands and feet in cold water or apply ice packs if they get red and itchy. Also avoid wearing socks.
  • If you are keen to keep your hair in control rub a tablespoon of coconut oil in your hair after shampooing!

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. Do I need to get a test for diabetes?
  2. At times I see things blurred. Is this normal?
  3. I have lower abdominal pain. I also feel a little feverish and chills. Do I have a serious problem?
  4. I am having white discharge and irritation around the vulva. What can I do?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Have your folic acid supplement and prenatal vitamins.
  2. Book an antenatal appointment with your doctor.
  3. Schedule to get a glucose test done.
  4. Discuss having a birthing plan with your husband.

Questions you may have

“Weight gain differs from woman to woman. On an average women gain 10 -14 Kgs during pregnancy. In the second trimester women generally gain 400 – 425 gms a week. If you are concerned that you are not reaching the target weight gain your doctor advised ask your doctor for advice. I checked with my doctor.”

“I was offered one in my second trimester. Whooping cough can kill and the vaccination provides protection during the first few weeks of the baby’s life. It is very safe for mother and baby. You should consult your doctor.”

Pregnancy week 25 wellness guide

Your Body

changes in the body
What to expect
You are starting to feel uncomfortable because of simple things that you may not be able to do easily, like bending. You are also likely to get back aches and feel clumsy with movements. That is because your uterus is growing rapidly. It is the size of a football! You are likely to be puffy and swollen in your face, hands and feet and your fingers may feel numb and tingly.Your hair looks thick and lustrous – enjoy!

Baby size

Week 28 baby size
What to expect
Your baby is the size of a small Eggplant or Aubergine (roughly 32 cms and 640 gms).

Your Baby

Pregnancy weekly guide - baby size
What to expect
Baby is getting hiccups and sticking out his/her tongue! The brain, lungs and digestive system are quite developed. The first bowel movement has taken place. Kidneys are functioning and baby can pass urine!

Taking care

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Tips
  • Sit up straight when you eat, eat small and healthy meals, cut back on tea or coffee to prevent indigestion problems – heart burn, nausea, distension.
  • If your vision seems blurred try not to worry too much – it will pass off after delivery.
  • Carry on doing pelvic floor exercises, have lots of water and food rich in fibre to help with constipation.
  • Maintain oral hygiene – brush your teeth at least twice a day. Periodontitis, a serious infection of gums has been linked to premature birth and increased risk of pregnancy related serious illnesses.
  • Use moisturiser or calamine lotion if your skin feels itchy.

Ask your doctor

Pregnancy weekly guide - ask your doctor
Questions
  1. My face, hands and feet feel puffy and swollen. I also get splitting headaches. Can this be due to high blood pressure in pregnancy?
  2. I get this tingling sensation and constant urge to move my legs. Could this be due to iron deficiency?
  3. My wrists hurt and I can barely move my fingers. Can acupuncture help?
  4. I often think that I don’t deserve to be happy! I think I have depression?

Your to do list

Todoicon
Action points
  1. Get weight checked and assessed.
  2. Have folic acid supplement and prenatal vitamins
  3. Book antenatal appointment.
  4. Ask how to prevent depression after birth.

Questions you may have

“Birth plans are personal. It is about thinking through what you would like to happen during your labour and after the birth. I planned where I wanted to give birth, what kind of pain relief I would like, discuss about caesarean section and what should I be looking out for in my newborn. I was advised to discuss my birthing plan with my husband, how he could help and to be flexible as all may not go as per plan!”

“Normal daily hair loss is suppressed by pregnancy hormones. Enjoy the look for now. After delivery you will shed quite a lot - all the hair that does not fall now!”