Baby Growth at 5 Weeks
Your baby is the size of an orange seed and is measurable at around 0.12 inches in length and in the upcoming week, your baby will double in size. Talk about small but mighty! Your embryo looks like a tadpole more than it does a baby but it is growing like crazy.
This week your baby’s heart and circulatory system take shape and will be the first system fully functional this early on. Your little baby’s heart is small but mighty – the size of a grain of salt and is possibly already beating! Remember last week when your entire baby was the size that just their heart is today? That’s right, if you were to have an ultrasound by the end of this week, you could potentially see the fluttering of the two tiny channels that make up the heart for now.
Your baby is also developing their nervous system. The neural tube developing and will become its brain and spinal cord. The neural tube is still open but will close up in another week.
You and Your Body at 5 Weeks Pregnant
At 5 weeks pregnant, you’re entering your 2nd month of pregnancy! If you just found out you’re pregnant, doctors date your 40 weeks of pregnancy beginning with week 1 (being the first day of your last menstrual period), so you’re already farther along than you may have thought.
You’re likely missing your first period right about now, so you can put away your tampons and pick up the pregnancy tests. hCG (the “pregnancy hormone”) levels continue to increase in the coming weeks and you’ll see a “positive” on your pregnancy test. Congrats mom!
hCG isn’t just making itself seen in pregnancy tests, you may also notice some of the not-so-savory effects of its abrupt increase, along with other key pregnancy-related hormones that are beginning to surge.
Your body probably doesn’t look much different yet but you may notice some physical effects due to surging hormones such as fuller breasts and a bloated belly. You don’t need maternity clothes yet, but you may feel most comfortable in your favorite pair of sweatpants and one of your bigger bras.
Typical Symptoms at Pregnancy 5 Weeks
Many things are starting to happen in your body now that pregnancy hormones are ramping up!
You may feel symptoms this week, or they may be more pronounced next week. Not feeling any different at all? Not to worry, the absence of symptoms is not a cause for concern as every woman’s pregnancy experience is unique.
The symptoms you feel this week are just the beginning of all the symptoms you may experience throughout your pregnancy. Many women feel the first trimester is the most difficult due to some of the tougher symptoms (such as morning sickness) that wear off by the second trimester.
Pregnancy nausea (also known as morning sickness) can occur at any time throughout the day. For some, it begins with a simple nauseated feeling that comes and goes and is often more prominent after skipping a meal. Be sure to talk to your doctor if your nausea is intolerable. There are various techniques, remedies, and medications that can help you out.
Others may have an increased sense of smell that makes them feel queasy easily when they encounter an unsavory scent. If you’ve heard the term ‘food aversions’ you’ll know that the mere sight, thought, or smell of certain foods can make a pregnant woman turn green! Don’t worry if you find yourself gagging at the thought of a salad; food aversions are temporary and should improve in the second trimester.
Other symptoms you may see in week 5:
- Tender and full breasts
- Fatigue (bring on the naps!)
- The need for frequent potty breaks
Pregnancy Week 5 Tips and Advice
If you haven’t already, schedule that first prenatal appointment! Your doctor will want to see you 3-5 weeks from now to check in on your little babe. It’s best to think about who you want to manage your pregnancy and deliver your baby sooner rather than later.
It’s time to start weaning off coffee; say it ain’t so! If you’re a coffee addict and savor your morning cup of joe, you are not alone. It’s important to keep your caffeine intake at or below 200mg of caffeine each day – that’s about one 10 oz cup of coffee – for the health of the baby. It’s best to start weaning off sooner rather than later. Consider replacing your 2nd or 3rd cup of coffee with pregnancy-approved herbal teas or sparkling waters with a slice of fresh fruit.
If you haven’t started taking a prenatal vitamin yet, now is the time! There’s a lot going on in that uterus of yours, you want to make sure your body has all the nutrients it needs for a safe and healthy pregnancy. Look for a prenatal that contains at least 400mg of folic acid or methylated folate (B9) and consider adding on an additional fish oil supplement that contains at least 200mg of DHA for that growing baby's brain. Talk to your doctor to find the best supplement for you and be sure to keep them apprised of any supplements you're taking to ensure it is safe for your baby.
While pregnant you’ll need to stay away from these food “no-no’s”:
- Raw, undercooked meats and fish
- High-mercury containing fish (the big fish, such as swordfish and tuna)
- Processed meats (like deli meats)
- Unpasteurized dairy products
- Unwashed produce
- Processed junk foods
- And of course, absolutely no alcohol
You’re on your way! If you feel overwhelmed, well, there’s a lot going on. The learning curve to do’s and don’ts in early pregnancy is huge but you’ll get the hang of things and we’re here to support you along the way so keep checking back for more tips each week.