Pregnancy week by week



Week 9 of Pregnancy

You have now entered the last month of your first trimester. By now, you have survived morning sickness, mood swings, indigestion , heartburn and plenty  of other uncomfortable symptoms as your baby has transitioned from small ball of cells into something  starting to resemble a human being. Try to remember that in only a few more weeks you should start feeling better as your placenta begins to take over the production of hormones.

Your body

You may notice that your breasts are getting larger. Your pregnancy is still not visible on the outside but you will notice that your waist line is beginning to expand. Around this time, some women experience heartburn and indigestion, as well as bloating and frequent need to urinate. Bloating and bowel troubles can leave you feeling very uncomfortable. The best way to combat water retention is drinking more water. Cut down on the salt and be sure you are drinking enough water throughout the day. Refer to our section on first trimester symptoms to get some tips on how to reduce your pregnancy discomforts.

Food aversions and cravings are very common throughout the pregnancy. In the first trimester, you may find the aversions to be stronger than the cravings due to your increased sensitivity to smells, taste and texture. You may get turned off at the sight of your favourite dish and instead crave for something new altogether.

Your baby

Your baby is now an inch long; the size of a green olive. Her eyes and ears are developing rapidly at this time. Her skeletal system is starting to appear. Her eyes are covered by a thin membrane, which are the eyelids. The eyelids are fused shut at the moment, but will open later at around 27 weeks. She has skin that is paper thin. She is floating in a pool of protective liquid called amniotic fluid.

Your baby’s heart has four chambers and it is beating twice as fast as yours. Your baby has fingers and toes that are getting longer. She has organs, muscles and nerves which are beginning to work. As most of your baby’s joints have developed, she will have started moving. You may not feel it yet but her movements can be picked up in an ultrasound. She may be playing with her fingers and practicing grasping movements. Another physical change is the disappearance of your baby’s tail. Your baby is now taking up a distinct human shape as her head and neck begin to develop away from what will soon be a torso. The arms and legs continue to lengthen and tiny sensitive pads show up on the end of the finger buds.


Make sure you are taking light, small, healthy meals at frequent intervals throughout the day. Increase your milk and calcium intake as your baby’s tooth buds are developing around this time. This will have a positive effect on your baby’s teeth.

Take up a form of exercise like yoga, walking, and swimming if you have not done so already. Tone down your physical activities that you were doing pre-pregnancy like working out at the gym, and lifting heavy weights.


1) What is first trimester screening?

In the first trimester you will be advised a scan and a blood test. It is done between 11-13 weeks of pregnancy. This is referred to as first trimester screen. It is done to look for chromosomal abnormalities such as Down syndrome. The blood test will measure your levels of two pregnancy hormones hCG and PAPP-A. An ultrasound will be done to measure the fluid under the skin of your baby’s neck (nuchal translucency). The result of the blood test and ultrasound along with your age can help your doctor calculate the odds that your baby has a chromosomal abnormality.

It is important to keep in mind that this is only a screening test. If your tests come positive, your doctor will suggest additional tests such as amniocentesis to confirm or rule out the diagnosis. Refer to our section on antenatal tests to read more.


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