5 weeks pregnant: Changes for mum

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You will probably suspect that you’re pregnant at the beginning of this week, because your menstrual period is missing. While there are few other visible changes to your body, the unseen changes occurring in your womb are extremely significant. And they’re likely to cause you to start feeling pregnant.

If you haven’t already begun experiencing fatigue, don’t be surprised if you start feeling tired and worn out this week. You’ll also probably find yourself needing to make some extra trips to the bathroom. Another common symptom of the first trimester of pregnancy, morning sickness (a very polite term for feeling like you’re going to vomit, not only in the morning but at any time of day), also often begins around the fifth week of pregnancy. Heartburn (indigestion which causes a burning feeling in the throat around the heart) and insomnia (trouble sleeping) are other symptoms of early pregnancy that might start affecting you this week. While they may be annoying and unpleasant, these symptoms are also a sign that your pregnancy is well underway, so don’t let them get you down.

The body changes which began in the fourth week of pregnancy, including increased blood production, and changes to your breasts and cervix, continue for several weeks. Your breasts may begin to grow bigger in preparation for breastfeeding. Your uterus, although hidden, is also beginning to increase in size to accommodate your growing baby, and the pressure it creates on your bladder is the reason you need to urinate more often. The cervix also continues softening this week, and for the remainder of your pregnancy, in preparation for the expansion it needs to make to allow your baby through it when you’re ready to give birth.

The placenta begins functioning as the site of nutrient exchange between you and your bub this week. Previously the transfer of nutrients from you to your baby occurred by diffusion (the molecules simply moving from mum to baby). From now on, blood vessels (which began their growth in week four) connect your body to your baby via the placenta and will allow the exchange for blood and nutrients from your body to your baby. These blood vessels also provide the route via which waste products are transferred out of your baby’s system.


More information on the 5th week of pregnancy

For more information on the fifth week of pregnancy, see 5 weeks pregnant.
For more information about how your baby is changing and developing, see Changes for baby this week.
For more information about appointments regarding pregnancy health advice and other lifestyle changes, see Doctor appointments this week.
For more information about the key points on the fifth week of pregnancy, see Key points this week.
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Date Created: August 19, 2012 Date Modified: August 29, 2012