8 Weeks Pregnant

image001When you are 8 weeks pregnant, not only have most women realized that they are pregnant, but many also get the first view of their baby through an ultrasound. An ultrasound in early pregnancy is done to check the heartbeats of the baby and to detect any abnormality if present. Also, at this stage the paper work to register the baby with the government begins so that after the delivery the baby gets a birth certificate. In another four weeks, the first trimester of your pregnancy would be over; hence, during these eight weeks you will feel advanced symptoms of pregnancy.

What Are the Pregnancy Symptoms at 8 Weeks?

Symptoms

Descriptions

Enlarged breasts

Although the overall body weight does not increase much during the first eight weeks of pregnancy, parts of the body like the breasts are growing. This may result in the breasts becoming more sensitive and tender; the areola and nipple may also become sensitive and darker due to increased pigmentation. Your old bras will not fit you anymore and under-wired bras will be particularly uncomfortable. Supportive maternity bras will be good for your breasts at this point in the pregnancy.

Increased blood in the body

To provide nutrition to the baby and to deal with this extra load, the blood volume will expand. It means that the blood circulating in your body is increasing. It is this extra blood volume that causes the initial weight gain in a pregnant woman.

Decreased blood pressure

Despite this increase in blood volume, the blood pressure is likely to decrease. Therefore, pregnant women feel as if they are about to faint more often, especially when they get up from sitting position. It is also for this reason that the blood pools in the lower part of the body. For example, the legs of pregnant women get prone to develop varicose veins or even hemorrhoids (piles).

Increased urination

Due to the expanded blood volume and the increased blood flow to the kidney, the volume of urine produced also increases. This is so because the increased waste products from the mother and the fetus need to be removed.

 

How Does Your Baby Grow When You're 8 Weeks Pregnant?

When you are 8 weeks pregnant, there is much going on with the baby’s development. The baby might be the size of a kidney bean but his or her organs are forming and this process, known as organogenesis is ongoing.

Body Parts

Descriptions

Hands and feet

The baby’s hands and feet are growing and little fingers and toes are poking out; because it is still an early phase in development, the fingers of the hands and toes are webbed. This webbed appearance will change by the eleventh week. The baby can even flex the wrist during this time.

Lungs

The lungs are still developing but the trachea and the bronchi, which are the breathing tubes, start extending from the throat to the lungs.

Brain

The brain is still primitive. The nerve cells called neurons are growing, branching and connecting with each other to form the neural pathways. Furthermore, the eyelids have grown enough to completely cover the eyes.

Important Notes:

Little of the baby’s “tail” is left and the baby is moving rapidly, although none of his or her movements are detectable by the mother during this time. It is not possible, however, to detect the sex of the baby yet, because the external genitals are still undergoing development.

You can watch this video and get more information about how your baby grows when you are 8 weeks pregnant:

How Does Your Life Change When You're 8 Weeks Pregnant?

Apart from the changes in your breasts, there are other changes going on in your body as well. These changes can be attributed mainly to the surging hormones in the blood, namely, oestrogen and progesterone. The increasing progesterone has a sedative effect. Mothers, during the first trimester, feel sluggish and sleepy most of the time. The other hormones in the body can also have a slight amnesic effect.

Morning sickness, vomiting, nausea and diarrhea can be draining and might cause mild dehydration. These symptoms can also cause the new mother to feel tired and weak.

In addition, a good night’s sleep might be hard to get with the constant need to pee. This again, as mentioned before, is because of the increased blood volume and the increased blood flow to the kidneys.

Some people find that a short walk helps combat fatigue and weakness. A short walk also helps preventing piles and varicose veins by mobilizing the blood in the body.

What About Diet at 8 Weeks Pregnancy?

Nutrients

Functions

Sources

Servings

Protein

All the cells and organs of the body are made of protein; by eating enough protein you are ensuring proper growth and nourishment for your baby.

fish, eggs, nuts, tofu, peanut butter

Two or three servings daily.

Calcium

Help facilitate the growth of teeth and bones of the baby, and proper nerve function and muscle contraction.

milk, yogurt, cheese, salmon

2-3 cups of milk every day or

1.2 grams of calcium daily.

Vitamin C

It is needed for healthy bones, teeth and gums.

brussels sprouts, melon, cauliflower, lemons

½ to 2 cups of fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C.

Beta carotene

After it is eaten, beta carotene is converted to vitamin A which is needed for healthy eyes, skin and bones.

carrots, apricots, cabbage, nectarines

½ cup serving daily.

Allowed daily intake: 770 micro gram.

(Excessive intake is contraindicated.)

Carbohydrates

Carbs are the mainstay of energy during pregnancy.

breads, rice, potatoes, pasta

Six serving daily which include one slice of bread, ½ cup cooked grains or cereals.

Iron

Pregnant women almost always become anemic; to prevent this, iron intake must be increased. Iron is needed for proper formation of red blood cells.

spinach, whole-grains, lean red meat

3 to 4 ounces of meat, 1 cup beans or iron supplements if the doctor recommends.

Vitamin B6

It is needed to combat stress and help red blood cell formation.

pasta, brown-rice, fish, lean meat, nuts

Almost 1 cup of cereals or rice or

3-4 ounces of fish, meat or poultry.

Vitamin B12

it helps the formation of red blood cells and maintain the nervous system of the baby.

milk, cereals, poultry, fish

Almost 2.6 microgram of vitamin B12 daily.

1 cup yogurt, 1 cup cereal.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is needed for effective absorption of calcium from the intestines and hence maintains healthy bones and teeth.

milk, bread, cereals, sunlight

Enjoy the sun for 25 minutes daily; 1 cup cereal or milk.

Folic acid

A lack of folic acid can produce a number of birth defects like spina bifida in the baby. Folic acid also helps red blood cell production and effective enzyme activity.

leafy vegetables, beans, nuts, peas

2 cups of fresh vegetables, 1 cup peas, supplements of about 400 microgram daily.

Healthy fats

Unsaturated fat and omega-3 fatty acids are needed for a healthy mother. However, saturated fatty acids should be avoided.

nuts, peanut butter, olives, meat, fish

2 servings of fish (like salmon) once a week.

Water

Hydration is needed for effective transport of nutrients to the baby. Water and salt balance are essential during pregnancy.

water and fruits rich in water such as watermelon

8-12 glasses of water per day.

What Can You Do When You're 8 Weeks Pregnant?

There are a few things that a pregnant woman should do when she's 8 weeks pregnant. Those include:

1. Book Your First Appointment with the Midwife

A booking-in appointment with the midwife will take place in another few weeks. You should contact your General Physician if you have not arranged this appointment yet; the GP will easily set it up.

2. Continue to Take Prenatal Vitamins

Pregnancy puts a lot of demand on the body of the mother; it is for this reason that prenatal vitamins are advised to meet the additional nutritional requirements of the baby.

3. Purchase Maternity Bras

Pregnancy makes the breasts tender and also enlarges them in preparation of lactation. The breast size enlarges throughout pregnancy, so your old bras will not fit you anymore. Hence, before shopping for maternity or baby clothes, you must shop for comfortable and supportive maternity bras. Make sure that you buy at least one or two sizes larger because your breasts may continue to enlarge throughout your second and third trimester.

4. Read Pregnancy Books

If you have not already bought pregnancy books, you should do so now. This is the time to read up on the changes that your body is undergoing to help understand them better. Pregnancy books can also help you feel closer to your baby by following up on the changes he or she is undergoing. Apart from imparting useful information, pregnancy books can also help you feel better about yourself and boost your self-esteem.

Including your partner and other children in the reading can also help them understand the changes you are undergoing and also feel closer to the baby.