Pregnancy is undoubtedly one of the most important and exciting times in a woman’s life. You will have a living being growing inside you. You will be thinking about him/her all day, taking the necessary steps to keep him/her safe inside your body.
The next few months will also be filled with numerous challenges for the woman. You will have many changes in your body during this time- emotional and physical. This journey of pregnancy started a few weeks ago for you. This week, your baby will start developing; a new life will start to take form.
3RD WEEK OF PREGNANCY- Baby Size, Changes, Symptoms, & Foods to Eat
It is imperative to understand the development of the baby when you are in the third week of this pregnancy journey. Here are a few important things to know and understand.
From one cell to your baby: You have conceived this week which means the fetus has started its incredible journey from a solitary cell to your baby. As soon as the winning sperm passes through the outer layer of the egg, the single-cell zygote makes a barricade, restricting the entry of the other sperm.
Within a few hours, this one cell zygote divides into two, then four, then eight, and so on, until the cluster has about a hundred cells within a few days after the first meeting of the egg and a sperm. It is still a tiny little ball of cells. Some of these cells will create the embryo and the others will create the placenta. While this process of splitting continues, the blastocyst will travel through your fallopian tube to the uterus. This is a four to five days journey.
Possibilities of twins: In this third week, one baby can grow into two. We have two possibilities- identical twins or fraternal twins. Identical twins develop from the same sperm and egg with identical genetic material. The fertilized egg would divide into two uniform cells.
In the case of fraternal twins, two sperm and two eggs are required. If two eggs are released during the ovulation both the eggs are fertilized by each sperm and you will have two different zygote twins.
Given below are all the important changes that your body will go through during this third week of pregnancy.
You would not find any change in your body from outside but inside many things are happenings. A winning sperm has fertilized your egg and your body is now preparing to develop a blastocyst that would later grow into a baby. This blastocyst then travels to the uterus.
After you have released the egg there arrives a new member in the follicle called the corpus luteum. It is a mass of cells that occupy the area left by the egg. It starts generating pregnancy hormones- estrogen and progesterone to take care of the baby in your body until the placenta takes charge.
After the fertilization process, within a week the blastocyst attaches to the uterine wall and the placenta starts developing. After a week or two, the immature placenta starts generating human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). HCG flows in the first trimester to instruct the ovaries not to release any more eggs.
HCG ensures that more estrogen and progesterone are produced so that the uterine lining does not shed and helps in the growth process of the placenta. These hormones play a major role during these nine months. The hormones can be traced in blood and urine. That is why the home pregnancy test requires you to urinate on the stick and for the blood pregnancy test, some of your blood is required.
Most of the symptoms occur due to pregnancy hormones. You would not experience most of the symptoms so early because the production of hormones in your body is still low. Some of the symptoms experienced during this week are as follows:
If your future embryo has always reached his new home then you can experience a bit of spotting. It is because of the fertilized egg drills into your uterus linings.
When the pregnancy hormones start to develop your body you may experience some feelings of nausea- with or without vomiting. This might happen anytime, irrespective of time. Mostly twin mothers-to-be experience such symptoms in their third week because they have higher levels of hormones in their bodies.
You may have sore breasts with the nipples darkened since your body has started preparing to produce milk.
You can get to know about your pregnancy, the end of the third week if your cycle is shorter than twenty-eight days. Taking a test is significant to attain surety.
Sometimes you may feel that you have put a few coins in your mouth. This is due to the hormones produced in your body. You will experience this only in the first trimester. You can reduce this by taking lemonade and other acidic drinks.
You can take a pregnancy test this week if you experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms. There are two kinds of pregnancy tests- home pregnancy test and a blood pregnancy test.
Home pregnancy test-
You first go through the instructions provided on the box of your pregnancy test kit. Most of the companies claim to be 99% accurate. Here is a thing that you need to know. The level of pregnancy hormones is not the same all the time. It doubles every 48hrs. So, if you test negative on the first day do feel sad. Continue taking the test for a few days to get the true result.
Blood pregnancy test-
Your gynecologist can ask you to take a blood pregnancy test. A blood test is a more accurate test as compared to the home test. It can detect lower amounts of hormones in the blood so you would be able to know about your status sooner.
It is too early for you to experience any change with your belly. It will start growing in size only after the 12th week of pregnancy.
You do not have to make any changes to your diet. You should have nutritious and well-rounded meals and have prenatal vitamins every day containing at least 400mg of folic acid. You do not have to increase your calorie intake until the second trimester. Once you have completed 12 weeks, you should increase your daily intake by 300 calories.
Here are a few nutritious tips you can consider to follow in this third week.
Eating nutritious food-
You need to have nutritious and home-cooked meals full of iron, vitamin c, calcium, and protein. Calcium will help in building healthy and strong bones of your child and it is also essential for his/her nerves, muscles, and heart.
Protein helps in making the new tissues of the baby. When you start having vitamin c rich food it helps the body to absorb more iron. Iron is needed to support the increased blood supply in your body during this period.
Take more fluids-
During your pregnancy you may experience vomiting, nausea accompanied by fever, cramps, and other problems and your body lose fluids. So, it is very important to be to increase your fluid intake. You can have water, fruit juice, warm water with lemon, etc.
Using positive affirmations-
Along with your physical health, you need to take good care of your mental health. Using positive affirmations can help to remain calm and avoid fear and anxiety during this period.
ADVICE FOR PARTNER
The partner needs to take good care of his wife. You should ensure that you have a good, healthy lifestyle. You should take her for walks, get fresh air, and engage in some physical activities that you both enjoy. You both should stop smoking cigarettes and consuming alcohol as it can be harmful to the baby.
3-WEEKS PREGNANCY ULTRASOUND
It is a bit too early for an ultrasound scan. Gynecologists generally advise women to get their first scan done between the eighth and fourteenth week. The second scan is usually done between the eighteenth and twenty-first week of pregnancy.
This is a very special period in your life. You have so much to do this week. First, you need to take a home pregnancy test, calculate the due date, and read more about the first trimester. From this week you need to start leading a healthy lifestyle for the wellbeing of your child.
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Mother of Two children. I’m a former teacher with a background in child development and a passion for Good parenting. I understand child development and know how to develop activities to help children learn and grow. Spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and volunteering in my community.