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  • Pregnancy Symptoms Week 13: You May Catch Your Baby Thumbsucking!

    If you think you're done with body changes, brace yourself for new pregnancy symptoms!
    by Rachel Perez .
Pregnancy Symptoms Week 13: You May Catch Your Baby Thumbsucking!
PHOTO BY iStock
  • At 13 weeks into your pregnancy, your body had adjusted to being pregnant. It's your last week in your first trimester. Hopefully, pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness are gone for good. While there are no hard and fast rules about spreading the news about your bun in the oven, most pregnant women and couples let the secret out during this week. After all, your baby bump is starting to really show.

    Pregnancy signs Week 13

    You are gaining back your energy and find yourself more mobile. Take this time to cross out important pregnancy to-do tasks. It doesn't mean, however, that you can go back to your pre-preggo routine. You need to listen to your body and take it easy, making sure not to overexert yourself.

    Childbirth may still be months away, but your breasts have already started making colostrum. Your placenta has also grown in size as the fetus, and you're well on your way to expanding your baby bump. You may even start receiving a few pregnancy perks without having to show a medical certificate from your doctor.

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    Pregnancy symptoms Week 13

    You may no longer have any of the early signs of pregnancy since the placenta is now delivering oxygen and nutrients to your baby. You may even feel more like yourself after three months of sleeping, nausea, and vomiting. But, as you enter your second trimester, you may notice some pregnancy symptoms are getting worse.

    Weight gain

    Some women lose weight at the beginning of the pregnancy but expect to pack on more pounds now that you're going into your second trimester. Depending on your pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI), here's a guideline of the recommended weight gain during the entire pregnancy according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG):

    • If your BMI is underweight (BMI under 18.5):
      Your ideal weight gain is a total of 18 to 40 pounds throughout the pregnancy. That's about a pound (1 to 1.3 pounds) per week for the remaining weeks of your pregnancy.
    • If your BMI falls under normal (BMI of 18.5 to 24.9):
      Your ideal weight gain is a total of 25 to 35 pounds. That's about a pound or a little less (0.8 to 1 pound) per week for the rest of your pregnancy.
    • If your BMI is overweight (BMI of 25 to 29.9):
      Your ideal weight gain is a total of 15 to 25 pounds. Aim to gain only a little over a half pound (0.5 to 0.7 pounds) per week for the remaining weeks of your pregnancy.
    • If your BMI is obese (BMI of 30 and above):
      Your ideal weight gain is about 11 to 20 pounds throughout the pregnancy. That's about a half pound (0.4 to 0.6 pounds) per week for the rest of your pregnancy.

    Make sure to eat healthy, not for two! Your baby is growing fast, but so will you if you're not careful. Gaining too much weight may lead to pregnancy complications such as gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, and both may put you and your baby's health at risk.

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    Changes in sex drive

    Some pregnant women experience low sex drive, especially if you still have first trimester symptoms. But intimacy is possible without having sex.

    There are preggos, however, who swear that pregnant sex is the best they've ever had, thanks to more sensitive pleasure areas, deeper cleavage, and more curves. Sex during pregnancy does not cause miscarriage, but you should still check with your doctor to make sure it's okay. If you have a history of early labor or miscarriage, we highly encourage you to talk to your doctor.

    Clumsiness

    Levels of the hormone relaxin will start to increase in your body, and it loosens your ligaments and joints in preparation for childbirth. It should only affect your pelvic area, but it can affect your entire body.

    Increased vaginal discharge

    Having more of the clear or milky-white, odorless vaginal discharge, called leukorrhea, is your body's way of fighting off bacteria. Using panty liners should get rid of the icky feeling. If your vaginal discharge smells bad, causes you more discomfort or it's yellow, greenish, pink, or brown, call your doctor ASAP as these may point to an infection or may be a sign of preterm labor.

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    Visible veins

    Your body is continuously producing 50-percent more blood, and your veins are putting on extra load delivering blood and oxygen to your baby and other parts of your body. Blue-streaked veins on your breasts and abdomen are proof that more blood is circulating in your body.

    Dizziness

    Hormone level and blood pressure changes, as your body send more blood flow to your baby than your own body, are the most common culprits for feeling dizzy at times. Your preggo body is also generating more heat now. Try to stay in well-ventilated areas. Keep it slow and steady when you change positions, from lying down to sitting and then standing up. No sudden movements! Also, snack regularly and drink plenty of water.

    Bloatedness, gas, and constipation

    The muscle contractions that usually move food along through the intestines are slower now that you're pregnant. Expect to burp a lot and pass gas frequently, which may add that bloated feeling. The extra iron from your supplements can be a factor in constipation. Drink lots of water and eat fiber-rich food. Stay away from foods that produce gas, such as fried foods, broccoli, root crops, and beans.

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    Heartburn and indigestion

    The muscle valve between the stomach and esophagus has relaxed, so that's why can get heartburn. Your uterus may have also begun to press down on your stomach, which makes it worse. Eat slowly and drink after you've finished your meal. Avoid eating spicy, greasy, and fatty food.

    Food cravings or aversions

    Your pregnancy hormones are a bit tamer now, but they will not hinder you from disliking or craving certain foods. Your still ultra-sensitive sense of smell may also factor in with your food choices, but try to keep it healthy and balanced.

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    Your baby's development on Week 13

    At 13 weeks pregnant, your baby is about the size of a lemon or a pee pod, almost three inches long and weighs about 0.81 ounces, according to What To Expect. You may notice on your next ultrasound that his head is relatively smaller compared to his body which is rapidly growing in size.

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    Your baby's fully functional intestines will now continue to mature in the fetus's abdomen after forming in the umbilical cord. Your baby's skin is also starting to grow ultra fine, velvety, soft hair called lanugo. It will protect your little one's skin and keep him warm while he's in your womb.

    Your baby's eyes are now formed, but the eyelids remain closed to protect your little one's eyes as they continue to mature. His (or her) ears are also in position, and your little one's vocal cords are now developed. If you're lucky, you may even catch your baby with her thumb in her mouth during an ultrasound scan.

    Your doctor may make out if you're having a boy or a girl, but it's better to wait until around week 20 for him to make a more precise assessment of your baby's sex via an ultrasound. (You can have non-invasive genetic testing to find out this early.)

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    Your to-do list on Week 13 of pregnancy

    You're almost up and about as you were pre-pregnancy but still, take it easy. You should be head deep into figuring out the pregnancy cost, making sure you've got your prenatal tests done, and& filing up forms for your maternity leave. Don't forget to include these in your to-do list!

    Prep your older kids and even pets

    Most of your family and friends may find out just this week that you're expecting, but don't forget to also break the news to your older children or your pets, if you have them. They are very much part of your pregnancy journey as you and your partner.

    Go for a dental checkup

    Pay a visit to your dentist for oral pregnancy health: your teeth, gums, and throat. It's a myth to expect that a preggo's teeth will fall out. Preggos are just more prone to gingivitis or bleeding gums because of the fluctuating hormones. Other common pregnancy oral issues include teeth that become brittle, tooth sensitivity, toothache, tooth loss, and lumps in the gum area.

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    Research for your baby's needs

    Hopefully, you're now happy with your chosen doctor, and she had explained a lot of the many pregnancy questions you had in your head. The next step is doing a little research for your baby, maybe a short list of names and pediatricians. You may also start a discussion with your partner about breastfeeding and childcare.

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    Exercise!

    If you don't have any pregnancy complications, exercise will be good for you and your baby. Continue your routine workout before you got pregnant, but be careful not to work your ab muscles. Start a simple low-impact exercise. Slow down your pace if you find yourself catching your breath while you converse. You may want to work on your Kegel exercises to strengthen your muscles down there and prevent pregnancy incontinence.

    Sleep on your side

    Your doctor may have told you to try to sleep on your side—your left side, actually, to promote newly oxygenated blood circulation. If you remember your biology, the heart pumps blood out through the right artery. But finding a comfortable position is tricky when you've got a growing baby bump. Pillows do come in handy in this case.

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    Moisturize

    If you haven't started applying moisturizer on your tummy yet, now is the perfect time to start. Your belly is now growing quickly real soon as you enter your second trimester. You'd want o lock in more moisture as your skin is just starting to stretch. Who knows? You may even avoid having stretch marks (it depends on your genes, too!).

    Go shopping (or borrow)!

    Start with maternity clothes that give your belly some room to breathe and grow, or nursing bra to provide support to your breasts. But don't go overboard in shopping; you'll only become bigger in the coming weeks.

    More on your week-by-week pregnancy:

    Pregnancy Symptoms Week 12: Your Baby Is Developing His Reflexes!

    Pregnancy Symptoms Week 14: That Big Appetite's Coming!

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