The 13th week of pregnancy is towards the end of the first trimester. The risk of having miscarriages greatly reduces at this point of time and the body feels quite at ease to carry on with the day to day routine work. There are a lot of changes in the 13th week of pregnancy and hence regular checkups are crucial during this period.
Let us look at some of the changes in the 13th week of pregnancy.
Changes in the 13th Week of Pregnancy
During the 13th week, which marks the end of first trimester, there are many physical and psychological changes in your body. During this stage, the hormone levels are quite stable as the placenta takes over with the production. The common changes observed during the 13th week of pregnancy are as follows:-
By the end of the first trimester, you would normally gain between 1 to 4 pounds of weight. Weight gain is one of the major changes in the 13th week of pregnancy. The weight gain is generally measured taking into account your pre-pregnancy weight. This is also the time when the belly gradually starts to expand as the fetus inside the womb grows.
The thickening of your waistline during the 13th week starts holding your belly up. It is best to avoid wearing tight fitting clothes and start wearing maternity clothes that are comfortable. This is one of the important physical changes in the 13th week of pregnancy.
Growth of the Fetus
As a part of the essential changes in the 13th week of pregnancy, the fetus starts looking like a tiny human. Most of the features get fully developed, including the finger prints, although the skin remains transparent and one can literally see the veins and organs of the fetus. The fetus’ size is approximately same as that of a pea pod during this time of the pregnancy.
The kidneys and urinary tract becomes fully functional by now. The vocal cord, nervous system, muscles and connective tissues become are well developed by the 13th week of pregnancy. The eyelids are tightly fused as the eye balls are yet to grow. The formation of bones also begins by this time. The formation of the head accelerates during the 13th week of pregnancy. The fetus at this stage of pregnancy starts excreting inside the sack of the amniotic fluid.
This is also the time when some pregnant women can feel your baby move inside the womb with pushing, pulling and kicking. It is one of the most interesting changes in the 13th week of pregnancy.
Changes in the Mammary Glands
The mammary glands or the breasts undergo several changes during this period. They become full and ripe. Though breastfeeding the newborn is months away but the breasts already start producing colostrum for lactation. The mammary ducts grow bigger in size and become extremely sensitive during this time. You may feel lumpy and a bit sore. The veins under the skin of your breasts may be visible at this phase of pregnancy. You may experience leakage now and then in the form of colostrums which is yellow or orange in color and is thick and sticky. These are some of the necessary changes in the 13th week of pregnancy. If you experience too much pain or discomfort then you may have to seek medical attention.
Other Notable Changes and Symptoms in the 13th Week of Pregnancy
Though the early symptoms of pregnancy begin to fade away by this time some women may experience the following symptoms and changes in the 13th week of pregnancy.
- Early exhaustion
- Decrease in energy
- Low blood pressure
- Sudden dizziness while getting up horizontally
- Burning sensation in the throat and chest
- Round ligament pain
- Nausea or dizziness
Tips to Manage Changes in the 13th Week of Pregnancy
Along with the changes in the 13th week of pregnancy, there comes a time when pregnant women must start focusing on healthy routine. The mother, along with the fetus needs to be healthy so as to avoid harm to the baby as well as the mother. You surely want a healthy, well-nourished baby for which you need to have a healthy diet, especially 13th week onwards.
To manage the changes in the 13th week of pregnancy, you should focus on having whole grain foods that contains vitamins, minerals and fats. Include proteins, fruits, vegetables and plenty of water in your daily diet.
The pregnant women should strictly stay away from food items like:
- Seafood, high in mercury
- Sushi and undercooked meats
- Unpasteurized foods like soft cheese
- Herbal teas
- Caffeine and alcohol
- Unwashed vegetables and fruits
- Raw eggs
You may continue with exercises but only under an expert supervision and if recommended by the doctor. For some pregnant women, rest may be advised while some may be advised caution when exercising, hence it is best to follow medical advice regarding exercises during 13th week of pregnancy. Most pregnant women can go for walks, yoga and swimming, if there is no specific restriction.
Warning Signs in the 13th Week of Pregnancy
As there are many changes in the 13th week of pregnancy, some women may experience undesirable symptoms as well. Make sure you seek immediate medical attention if you experience vaginal bleeding, abdominal or pelvic cramping, spotting, clots and pain in the abdomen. If you experience excessive stress, nervousness and depression, it is advisable to visit the doctor, immediately. Although the risk of miscarriage decreases by the 13th week of pregnancy, it is important to be cautious to avoid complications during pregnancy and ensure a healthy pregnancy.