The First Trimester: The Good, the Bad, and the Surprising

The first trimester of your pregnancy can be extremely overwhelming. It is the time when you experience an almost invisible, yet incredible transformation, both mental and physical. It’s exciting, and draining, and Wondrous all at once… I’ve heard ;). Understanding and dealing with the changes can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Let’s discuss the things you should expect during the first trimester of your pregnancy and how you can deal with any roadblocks.

First things first – How long does the first trimester last?

The first trimester of your pregnancy will last for about 13 weeks and begins before your pregnancy. Did you know, the first day of your last menstrual cycle is typically measured as the very first day of your pregnancy?

Expect these changes in your body

Apart from the very first sign of your pregnancy, (usually a missed period) you may also notice the following changes in your body:

  • Swollen, tender breasts
    If you feel sudden heaviness in your breasts along with a missed period, there are high chances that you’re pregnant. Abrupt hormonal changes in the body can lead to breast soreness or tenderness. Don’t get too worked up if you notice swelling on your breasts; it’ll slowly fade once your body becomes accustomed to the hormonal changes.
  • Increased urge to urinate
    The quantity of blood in your body increases during the first trimester of pregnancy. This pushes the kidneys to filter out extra fluid that enters your bladders and means you pretty much constantly have to pee.
  • Nausea or morning sickness
    Even though “morning sickness” is the term most commonly used to refer to pregnancy-related nausea, it can trouble you during any time of the day – morning or night. There is no set pattern. Once you conceive, you may have to deal with morning sickness almost daily, especially during the first trimester.
  • Aversion to certain food items
    While it’s true that your food cravings increase manifold during pregnancy, the cravings don’t strike immediately after you get pregnant. In the first trimester, you may experience aversion to the taste and odor of certain food items, due to hormonal changes in the body.
  • Constipation
    Increased levels of the hormone progesterone can cause sluggish movement of food through your digestive tract, leading to constipation.
  • Lower back stress
    Once you’re in the third week of pregnancy, you may experience lower back stress and pain. Don’t worry; the pain is a part of your body’s attempt to prepare your uterus for the baby.
  • Acne breakout
    Yes, your near and dear ones may compliment you on your “pregnancy glow,” but it’s more about your internal joy than your skin. During the first trimester of pregnancy, your body can release excess oils due to the sudden hormonal changes. This excess oil on your skin can lead to acne breakouts.

Try herbal and peppermint tea to help stave off nausea

Brace yourself for the emotional turmoil

Get ready for a roller coaster, mama. All those hormones are going to have an impact. You may feel irritated, agitated, anxious, exhausted, and overwhelmed. The thought of giving birth and handling a newborn also adds to the emotional strain.

If you’re dealing with mood swings, don’t press the panic button too soon. Give your mind some time to adjust to the hormonal changes in your body, and make sure you are intentional about doing things to relax. If you still feel you need medical help, don’t hesitate to consult your doctor.

Want to sail through the first trimester without any hiccups?
Here’s are a few things you must do

  • Avoid keeping your stomach empty to tackle morning sickness.
  • Consume foods that are low on unhealthy fats.
  • Keep your body hydrated by increasing your fluid intake.
  • Focus on a healthy diet and regular exercise to keep your energy level high.
  • Avoid citrus fruits, fried foods, spicy foods, caffeinated drinks, and alcohol.
  • Prepare yourself to experience a broad spectrum of emotions during the first trimester of your pregnancy.
  • Provide your body with adequate rest.

8 incredible facts about the first trimester of pregnancy

In case you’re already feeling nauseous after reading about the changes that you might notice in your body, don’t worry. Not all the news is bad! There are also some amazing things that happen during your first trimester.

  1. You will hear your baby’s heartbeats for the first time.
  2. You’ll be asked to appear for your baby’s first sonogram.
  3. Your clothes will still fit you.
  4. Your hair will look more lustrous and bouncier.
  5. At four weeks, your baby will be the size of a poppy seed.
  6. Once you hit the eight weeks mark, the chances of miscarriage drop to 2%.
  7. At ten weeks, your baby will begin to respond to your touch.
  8. Most of your baby’s organs will be fully developed by the end of the tenth week.

The final thought

If you’re planning to conceive anytime soon, make sure you read the article thoroughly to prepare your body and mind for the changes that come with the first trimester of pregnancy. Make sure you don’t miss any visit to the clinic or midwife. During your appointments, discuss all your issues with the birth team, including your fears about giving birth or pregnancy. At the end of the day, pregnancy is an incredible miracle, and mamas agree, your precious little one is worth every pain, mood swing, bout of nausea, and more.

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