There are many pregnancy milestones to note when you are expecting. You will want to keep track of key milestones so that you never forget important memories. Memories like, when your pregnancy began, the time you felt the first kick, when you first heard your baby's heartbeat and when you went into labor. This article will discuss milestones by each month, then by week and helpful app recommendations too.
Pregnancy Milestones by Month
Through each stage of your pregnancy you will notice certain changes that define each month.
Your pregnancy journey begins and your body is working hard to turn a fertilized egg into an embryo. On week four, the gestational sac where the baby grows will show up on a scan. This will be the first time that you see your beloved baby growing.
Breast tenderness is common during the second month, so wearing a good, supportive bra will help during this time. Go to a proper store to get measured up properly and buy something you find comfortable. Tiredness might set in so be prepared for this. You might find yourself needing the toilet more often, especially at night. Heartburn is also common, but before buying over the counter remedies it is best to check with your health adviser. Nausea will probably get worse.
Baby is having a growth spurt this month so your bump will probably get a bit bigger. Don't let your bump growing bring you down though, remember it is healthy and normal, but you might not fit into ordinary clothes anymore. It might be time to start buying maternity clothes, trousers with extra elastic and larger tops. This is all part of normal pregnancy and should be embraced. By the end of the month people will start to notice that you are pregnant, unless you only have a small bump which some women do. Also around this time you may start to get cravings. Cravings are the strangest thing, you might fancy chocolate and mushrooms or cherries and mustard. Your first trimester is almost over and you are edging your way to the half-way mark.
Your baby is growing all the time and should be about 3 ounces, the fetus heart is working hard to pump blood round the body. Therefore, you will have a high chance of hearing the baby's heartbeat. You can buy fetal heartbeat monitors in stores so you can listen to the heartbeat at home. Alternatively your health care assistant will use a monitor so you and your partner can hear the heartbeat together.
Month five has a lot of positive things in store. If you have had morning sickness, nausea and vomiting, it should start to get better now. If you have had it really bad, then this is the month you've been waiting for. By the fifth month, the worst symptoms usually lift and you can start to enjoy your pregnancy more. Furthermore, if you choose to, you can find out the gender of the baby this month via ultrasound. In addition, your baby bump will grow even larger so you may be needing some bigger clothes.
Month six is exciting as if you haven't felt your baby kick yet, you will more than likely start to feel it kick this month. At first, it feels like a little flutter, almost like there is a butterfly in your stomach. It is a really strange sensation, but it is very pleasant and almost tickles. The sensation of the baby kicking is known as quickening and is a special time of bonding between mother and baby. As baby starts flipping around your uterus, she will be growing hair and eyebrows.
Just three months away from your due date and you will probably be noticing big differences. You will be feeling more heavily pregnant now as baby is growing larger, developing in different ways and kicking more powerfully. During month seven, baby will start to respond to sound. If you play some music near your stomach, you might feel your baby kick in response to it. Baby can hear your voice and other people so if you haven't done so already, start talking to your baby and even reading her stories.
Cramps start kicking in this month as your body prepares to get ready for the big day. Although it may be frightening the first time you feel cramps, don't worry you are probably not going into labor yet. These cramps are perfectly normal and are known as Braxton Hicks (false labor) contractions. Your breasts may start leaking milk ready for breast feeding. A nursing bra might help if you are worried about the milk getting on your clothing or a few cotton wool pads in your bra. You are very nearly at the end of the 9 months of pregnancy. You will probably be feeling tired, frustrated, but elated and excited too.
This is the month you've been waiting for, the start of the end of your pregnancy. Baby is almost fully grown, your stomach is probably feeling like it could not stretch any further. The uncomfortable feelings that you felt at the start of pregnancy might return, but hopefully your baby will go down the birth canal and relieve your discomfort. You are finally ready to meet your baby.
Pregnancy Milestones For Baby
A pregnancy milestones chart will keep you up to date week by week of what your baby is doing inside your womb. Although you cannot see your baby going through changes, a great deal is happening inside the womb.
Weeks 1-8 of Pregnancy
Your baby is not yet conceived. Once your body gets ready for ovulation and formulates for conception, your baby will be conceived. Fertilization occurs when sperm meets egg and your baby is little than a poppy seed. Implantation occurs when the blastocyst enters the uterine lining, then divides forming the placenta and the embryo.
You will be able to tell if you're pregnant using a home test now as your HCG hormone levels will be raised.At the six week stage you might be struggling a little with morning sickness, tiredness and starting the very early signs of pregnancy. The bump is just the size of a sweet pea so very tiny yet, with lot's of growing to do.
Your womb is now the size of a lemon. Your breasts may become larger and you might suffer breast tenderness. You might need to urinate more frequently. Little fingers and toes start to grow now. You are have reached the half way mark of your first trimester and your bump is now classed as a foetus.
Weeks 9-16 of Pregnancy
Your baby's tail has disappeared and your bump more closely resembles a human. Your baby now starts trying out their joints. You might also begin to feel bloated and clothing becomes tighter on you.
Your baby is the size of a strawberry and is starting to develop bones and cartilage. Your baby's head and body are about the same size. Blood vessels can be seen inside the skin because it is transparent. Your baby measures about the size of a plum. You can now hear the heartbeat when you have your ultrasound scan.
Your baby's lungs are developing. Your baby might be able to get its thumb in its mouth now as the limbs are developing further. Your baby will be able to take its first few breaths. Your baby is growing hair on her head, eyebrows and body. Your baby is kicking her legs and moving her elbows. Your baby's eyesight is developing quickly.
Weeks 17-24 of Pregnancy
Baby is practicing sucking and swallowing as she starts to get ready for a breast or bottle. Your baby is the size of a cucumber. Baby is busy flexing their arms and legs, practising their kicking skills. Your baby weighs more than the size of your placenta. You might be feeling tenderness in the lower abdomen as baby has a growth spurt. Also you could feel some flutters this week as baby's kicks get stronger. Your baby is just over 6 inches in length and about 10 ounces in weight. Week 20 is a big milestone as you are now just over half way through your pregnancy. Baby is just about the size of a medium banana. You will be noticing those kicks now more than ever, especially in the coming weeks as baby gets bigger.
Your baby is about the size of a small bag of sugar and weighs more than the placenta. You can hear your baby's heartbeat through a stethoscope. Your baby's ears are becoming more sensitive to sounds and will recognize your voice now. Your baby is busy moving those facial muscles and making facial expressions. Your baby is long and thin like an ear of corn.
Weeks 25-32 of Pregnancy
Your baby's skin is getting pinker and its nose starts to work. Your baby is growing more hair now which is said to cause indigestion. Your baby now weighs 2 bags of sugar (2 lbs). Although your baby might feel a bit cramped in your uterus, there is still enough room for growth. Your baby has developed their taste buds and might hiccup if you eat spicy foods.
Your baby's eyelids are now open and they can see light and shadows, but not objects yet. This is the end of your second trimester.Baby is dreaming now, blinking, coughing and hiccuping. Your baby is growing rapidly at this point. Your baby's brain is growing in intelligence. Your baby's senses develop. Baby is mastering the skills of sucking and breathing whilst you will be experiencing cramping due to Braxton Hicks.
Weeks 33-37 of Pregnancy
Your baby's immune system gets stronger. If you are carrying a baby boy his testicles will descend. Baby's brain is increasing making the head heavier. Baby's bones are much stronger now. Baby will be practicing sucking whilst moving and breathing in the womb.
Weeks 38-42 of Pregnancy
Surfactant is produced by the baby to help her take the very first breaths. Colostrum is also produced ready for breast milk. You may experience clear signs of labor. It is the end of your pregnancy but, baby might not be ready yet so be patient.
Your baby might be late, but you will soon start to go into labor in the next week or two. Baby is fully grown but, has her very own birth schedule and will be here soon. Less than 5 % of babies are actually born on the day they are due.
Top 5 Pregnancy Milestones Cards to buy
Pregnancy milestone cards are fantastic ways to store all your memories of pregnancy that will never be forgot. Below are 5 of the best recommendations for pregnancy milestone cards.
Milestone Cards Pregnancy Gift Set
This milestone set is designed so that your special moments will never be forgotten. Write down the date, then take a photo together with the card to make a memory you will never forget. With this set, you receive 30 cards and newborn pictures.
Pregnancy Journal Cards
With this set, you get 30 cards with different sayings like when you first got a positive test, when you started experiencing morning sickness, your first ultrasound, when your cravings started and plenty more. These cards will ensure that you never forget a moment of your pregnancy and can be treasured forever.
4x6 inch creatively designed cards on high quality 350 GSM card, in a beautiful drawstring muslin bag, you'll be able to cherish your memories forever.
Speckled Pregnancy Milestone Cards
These speckled pregnancy milestone cards will help you to remember the precious gift of pregnancy. There are 34 cards in each pack printed by Toucan.
Nature Pregnancy Set
This pack includes a massive 58 set of cards which you can buy, print off and keep.
Top 5 Pregnancy Milestones App with Due Date Calculator
A due date calculator is really handy to have when you are expecting as it will help you keep on top of your dates and know what to expect and when. Below are the top 5 pregnancy milestone apps with due date calculators.
1. Pregnancy Tracker and Baby Due Date Calculator
This is an app that can't be underestimated, you will receive detailed information about your baby's journey every week.
2. Due Date Calculator
This due date calculator also includes a gestational age calculator too.
You have to download the Acog app first, but there is a highly accurate due date calendar so it is worth downloading. It is able to work out the discrepancy of due date between the ultra sound date and the last date of your menstrual period.
4. Ferring IVF Wheel
Again, this works out your due date, but also the expected weight and length of the fetus based of standard fetal growth curves.
5. OB Calc Pro (Obstetrician)
This has been designed by a doctor and is able to set test date reminders and email information in table format.
Hopefully you will have more awareness of what to expect during your pregnancy. You know each milestone will bring different symptoms as your baby grows and develops inside you. Hopefully you will have a pleasant experience and treasure the memories forever. This is a special time that will go so quickly and before you know it, your baby will be in your arms. Congratulations!