Weeks pregnant Pregnancy week to week
5 weeks pregnant – the changes in you
Your body makes a mucus plug which closes off the uterus and protects the baby. Thanks to this mucus plug the uterus is protected from infections and diseases. The amount of hCG hormone continues to increase. This hormone maintains the pregnancy but is also the cause of pregnancy ailments, such as nausea and dizziness. Not all women experience these ailments. Try not to worry about it as you will know soon enough if your body is reacting to the pregnancy in this way.
5 weeks pregnant – how is your baby growing?
The child is just a clump of cells, just 2 millimetres long and looks a bit like a shrimp. If you look carefully you can just make out a 'head' and 'tail'. There are small bulges which later develop into arms and legs. However an important development in week 5 is the formation of the heart and central nervous system and the beginnings of a primitive blood circulation. An ultra sound scan may be able to already pick up a greyish white line which is the beginning of the spinal cord.
Pregnancy ailments in the first weeks
Many books and articles inform us about possible complaints during pregnancy but for some women they can be a serious ailment. It is no fun spending your whole day feeling sleepy, dizzy and nauseous. It is not just a complaint but can actually be painful and irritating. Fortunately many women see it as 'all in a good cause'. You know what the cause is and what it is all for. It is encouraging to know that it of ten only happens in the first three months of pregnancy.
This is a common ailment during pregnancy and can be a nuisance. It is not completely clear why this occurs. One reason could be that the skin is stretched as a result of the growth of the uterus and baby. This stretching can cause itching especially around the abdomen; another cause maybe ectopic eczema or a small disturbance in the liver. Atopic eczema can lead to patches of eczema on the skin which can become itchy and swollen. A disturbance in the liver may cause the gall bladder not to drain properly. This can cause waste to enter the blood system which causes the skin irritation.
The most common ailment during pregnancy is sickness. Studies have shown that 60-80% of pregnancies suffer from sickness. This ailment is often underestimated and can have a significant influence on your life. It often helps to eat small portions of food spread throughout the day. Make sure you have a cracker or something similar to hand if you are travelling. Keep in mind that after approximately 16 weeks the sickness will begin to subside. The level of hCG hormone (the “trouble maker”) will be reducing around this time. If you cannot keep food down then it is important to contact your GP.
What is your experience of pregnancy?
Your pregnancy week by week
Next week: Week 6 - Baby layette and work