Wednesday, 23 January 2013

What to expect: Week 12

In the final week of your first trimester your baby’s heart will be beating at a rate of about 160 beats per minute, which is twice as fast as your own. This week your baby has discovered their reflexes and is beginning to open and close their fingers and toes. Your baby is now approximately 2 inches long (about the size of a lime) and is looking distinctly human in their facial features.

At this point many mums-to-be are finding that their usual clothing is too tight and restrictive and they are beginning to think about maternity clothes. You may still be feeling permanently tired and finding it hard to sleep but most women start perking up as they enter the second trimester, so it’s not long to go now!

Heartburn is common at this stage in pregnancy and for many women this is the first time they have ever experienced it. Heartburn can be particularly uncomfortable when you are lying down and can cause an unpleasant burning sensation in the throat. The range of discomfort felt as a result of heartburn can vary but if it is very intense you should be sure to mention it to a healthcare professional. 

Most women will have their first ultrasound scan around now and this is often the point when the pregnancy starts to feel real, this is also the most common time for mums-to-be to share their exciting news with their friends and family. It is worth remembering that dating scans are as estimate and only around 5% give birth on their actual due date. At this ultrasound scan there will also be the opportunity to screen for abnormalities such as Down’s syndrome, your midwife will talk you through what is involved and offer plenty of advice.

To help you relax why not treat yourself to an indulgent aromatherapy massage? You should always be sure to let your massage therapist know that you are pregnant so they can avoid any sensitive areas and provide a relaxing and above all else safe massage experience.  

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