Congratulations on your pregnancy. As you start the journey to bringing your bundle of joy to life, you should be prepared for the bodily changes you will experience through the pregnancy. As your body goes through changes, so does the bun in your oven who is also growing fast.
Understanding the fetal development timeline for your baby is important so you can monitor the health of your pregnancy, understand your own body changes, eat healthier so your baby can get the nutrients they need to grow, and also because the transformation from embryo to human is magical.
Here are the development milestones you should expect of your baby.
First Trimester: 3-12 weeks
This is when most of the baby’s growth spurts takes place but also very crucial since it’s when most miscarriages occurs.
At this stage, most of the organs like the heart begin to form and even function. The brain, kidneys, liver and major organs develop and start functioning.
Between week 6 and 8, facial features like eyes and nostrils start forming and by the start of the third months, the limbs start developing including the baby’s nose and lips. You can already hear the baby’s heartbeat, which is twice as fast as that of an adult human, and can even have 12 Week Ultrasound Pictures. The reproductive organs have also started forming.
Since your body is still getting acclimatized to the pregnancy, you will suffer nausea, morning sickness, hunger pangs, food aversions, and irritability. Your diet at this stage is vital for organ development and you should start taking supplements. There is no noticeable bump though.
Second trimester: 14-27 weeks
By the second trimester, your body has gotten accustomed to the baby growing inside you, the morning sickness has subsided, and you are starting to glow. The danger of miscarriage is also reduced and the bump has started showing. The weight gain is now more prominent because the baby is now bigger and more demanding of nutrients.
Almost grown now, you can notice the baby’s facial expressions and even know the baby’s sex. This is also the stage where the baby starts kicking. By week 19, the baby is more aware of their surroundings and can respond to external sounds. Their hair grows as well as their brain and taste buds. You baby should be able to open and close their eyes by the final week of the second semester.
This is the time to start shopping for maternity wear and taking childbirth classes in preparation for the third and final trimester.
Third trimester: 28-40 weeks
This is the last stage of the pregnancy and the baby almost fully grown now in preparation for delivery. Their nails develop as the facial hair also grows during the seventh month.
By the final month, most of the organs are fully developed, the baby can even cry and starts rotating downwards in preparation for birth on week 40.
It is important to start making delivery preparations early into the third trimester since you will feel fatigued in the final weeks.