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9 WEEKS, 1 DAY

216 days to go...

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Your baby today

Most of your baby's primitive organ systems are in place: the arms and legs have formed, complete with wrists and elbows, and have tiny fingers and toes; the retina of the eye, and the nose, can be seen. The large dark mass is the enlarged liver.

Your baby's welfare will be your main concern, but be reassured that, however you're feeling, she'll be getting sustenance.

You may be very conscious of your health and well-being at this time but be reassured that even if you've felt unwell during this first trimester, your baby will have been taking what she needs from you: you have internal reserves of various minerals and substances, such as iron, and will still be absorbing some nutrients from what you eat. However, if you're concerned about the amount of vitamins and minerals you're consuming through your diet, for the sake of your own health you could take a prenatal vitamin supplement. Remember, you should still be taking folic acid supplements and eating folate-rich foods (see Take folic acid). There is no cause for concern if you do not put on any weight in the first trimester, or even if you lose a bit of weight. The majority of weight gain takes place in the second and third trimesters (see How much weight will you gain?).

If you're vomiting a lot and struggling to keep food down (see Fit-not sick), don't hesitate to see your ob/gyn.

The Lowdown

He's "pregnant" too

Can your partner ever really understand what you're going through?

According to a recent study, some dads don't need a fake pregnancy belly to empathize. Known as Couvade syndrome, symptoms experienced by expectant fathers ranged from morning sickness to backaches, mood swings, and food cravings. Although, interestingly, often it was the woman claiming her partner had these symptoms.

Couvade is thought to happen because men are so deeply involved in the pregnancy. While others believe it could be jealousy (you're getting all the attention) or guilt that he's responsible for your condition and therefore your symptoms.

Focus On... Your body

Your changing breasts

The changes to your breasts you will be noticing are caused by both an increased blood supply and a rise in pregnancy hormones, particularly in the first 12 weeks.

Before your pregnancy was confirmed you may have felt tingling sensations (especially in the nipple area) as the blood supply increased.

  • As early as 6-8 weeks, your breasts will have become larger and more tender and may have begun to look different on the surface, with threadlike veins starting to appear.
  • At around 8-12 weeks, the nipples darken and can become more erect.
  • As early as the 16th week of pregnancy, colostrum, the first milk, may leak from your breasts.
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Excerpted from Pregnancy Day by Day.
Copyright © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited.
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