5th Week of Pregnancy: Baby Changes, Symptoms, Foods & Care

5TH WEEK OF PREGNANCY: WHAT TO EXPECT. Yay! You are now officially pregnant. By now you have missed your period and you are experiencing several physical and emotional changes in your body due to the increasing levels of the pregnancy hormones. So, it is time for you to take a home pregnancy test. A positive result will change your life forever. 

5th Week of Pregnancy: Baby Changes, Symptoms, Foods & Self Care

This news will bring in different kinds of reactions from joyfulness to panic. Your child is a month old now. Though he/she is still very small you will start feeling his/her presence in your body. This week is very important for the growth of your baby so you must take good care of yourself and your child.

 BABY’S DEVELOPMENT

Understanding your baby’s development process is also a necessity at this point. Listed below are the important developments that your baby goes through this time.

  • Your baby is growing fast. The baby’s body structure and organs have started developing including the nerve cells, blood cells, brain, spinal cord, and heart. The embryo is now approximately 2 mm long, as small as a sesame seed.
  • At present, the heart is developing into a tube-like form. Some blood vessels of the baby have developed through which blood circulation has started. The baby is connected to his/her mother with a blood vessel which will eventually become the umbilical cord.
  • The outer layer of the embryo creates a furrow and folds. This creates a hollow tube which later becomes the spinal cord and brain of the baby and it is called the neural tube. Defect in the lower end of the tube causes spina bifida and defect in the upper part causes anencephaly. Spina bifida can be prevented by consuming folic acid. So, you should include them in meals.
  • There is a fluid-filled ball around your growing baby called the gestational sac. This week, your embryo will not be visible on ultrasound but the gestational sac will be visible.

YOUR BODY

Your body will also be going through some important changes at this point in time. Given below is a list of the significant changes you should know of. 

  • You must have missed your period by now. This the most common sign of pregnancy. This is the right time for you to take a home pregnancy test because by this time the level of the pregnancy hormone, HCG is quite high in your urine. So, the result will be more accurate than before. 
  • Learning that you are about to become a mother you will experience a wide range of emotions- both cheerfulness and depression. Mood swings are very normal during this period so do not worry about that. 
  • Pregnancy hormones are being produced in large quantities during this week. Some of these hormones are progesterone, HCG, and estrogen. 
  • Progesterone helps in the functioning of the placenta, increases the growth of breast tissue, and prevents the uterine muscles from contracting. HCG helps by providing support to the corpus luteum till the placenta is ready to take charge and it also controls the amount of progesterone in the body as per the requirement. Estrogen plays an essential role in regulating the level of HCG and progesterone in the body.

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

Your body has started producing a high level of pregnancy hormones. So, you may experience the early symptoms of pregnancy. Some of these symptoms are as follows:

FOOD CRAVINGS AND AVERSIONS- 

During this week you can have an intense craving for your favorite food items and aversion for the healthy and not-so-tasty foods. But you need to maintain a balance between the two. If you want to have cheesecake you also need to add some vegetables to your meal.

CRAMPS-

This week you may experience cramps which indicates that your embryo has properly Implanted into the uterine wall. It can also happen when your uterus is growing in size and stretching the ligaments. But if it is too painful you should consult your gynecologist. 

EXCESSIVE SALIVA-

You may feel some discomfort in your mouth due to the increase in the secretion of saliva. Your mouth will watch for absolutely no reason. You can keep your mouth a little dry by chewing sugarless gums.

FREQUENT URINATION-

You will have to make extra trips to the washroom during this period. It is because the kidney is also expanding along with your uterus and stomach. This creates pressure on the bladder and this increases your urge to pee. Do not hold it or it can lead to a bladder infection.

FATIGUE-

You may feel tired and sleepy all day. This is due to the increase in the level of progesterone in your body. This is one of the most common symptoms in this period.

MOOD SWINGS-

Knowing that you are about to become a mother within a few months can be emotionally stressful. During your pregnancy, you will experience different kinds of emotions- sadness, fear, happiness, anxiety, etc. The pregnancy hormones are responsible for these mood swings. If these emotions are extreme and difficult for you to cope with, you should consult your doctor.

PREGNANCY BELLY

This week, your belly will be a little bloated and you will experience some light cramps. These cramps are normal in this period, indicating the implanting of an embryo in the uterine wall or stretching of your uterus. 

But if you experience severe and painful cramps you should positively consult your doctor. Doctors generally recommend women to gain one to five pounds in the first trimester. You do not have to worry about it for now. Just add healthy food items to your diet.

TIPS FOR THIS WEEK

Here are a few tips that you should follow for the 5th week of your pregnancy.

VISIT THE DENTIST-

You should visit your dentist this week. It is because the same hormones that cause nausea and tenderness of breast can also cause gum inflammation called pregnancy gingivitis. If it is kept unattended, in the future it may lead to a serious gum infection called periodontitis.

TAKE PRENATAL VITAMIN-

You must ensure that you are having prenatal vitamins daily. It is because prenatal vitamin contains high levels of folic acid which reduces the risk for neural tube defects.

MAKE HEALTHY FOOD CHOICES-

At this stage, you need to have healthy and home-cooked food for the baby’s health. You should start consuming more vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans, and grains and stop having uncooked or undercooked meat and seafood, raw cookie dough, and unpasteurized milk and cheese.

STOP SMOKING AND DRINKING-

You should stop smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol as this can be very harmful to your baby. Additionally, you should also lower your consumption of tea and coffee and some recreational medicines as they can have a similar impact on the baby. 

STOP CLEANING THE KITTY LITTER BOX-

You should not take up the duty of cleaning the litter box in this condition since this can cause a serious infection called toxoplasmosis which can be very harmful to your baby.

ADVICE FOR PARTNER

Knowing that you and your partner are going to be parents may make you feel both excited and anxious at the same time irrespective of whether your pregnancy is planned or not. Though she will be going through the different physical and emotional changes during this period, you both will have a challenging path ahead. So, ensure that there are love and understanding in the relationship to make things easier.

TAKEAWAY

You will probably get the good news this week. Getting to know that you are about to take have a kid in a few months will be life-changing. By this time, you will start experiencing some early pregnancy symptoms. 

These symptoms will increase in the following weeks. This week you should take the pregnancy test, visit your prenatal doctor and your dentist, start having nutritious food full of proteins, irons, and vitamins and stop consuming harmful substances like tobacco, alcohol, and coffee.

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