This week, your baby is as big as a raspberry.
Baby's toes and fingers start to develop, the upper body grows faster than the lower body, the hands are longer than the legs. These changes mean the embryo is gradually taking on a human shape so is no longer referred to as an embryo, but a baby.
The 8th week of pregnancy can be quite challenging for expectant mothers, as they may feel extra tired and experience morning sickness. Additionally, as the uterus begins to stretch due to the growing fetus, it may add pressure on the bladder, resulting to frequent urination.
Pregnant women usually have their first prenatal check-up during the 8th to 10th week of pregnancy. After seeing the baby and hearing the baby's heartbeat through ultrasound, many mothers-to-be feel the joy of their pregnancy more realistically.
At 8 weeks pregnant, the baby has grown small fingers and toes, and the facial features have become clearer. The silhouette of the ears, upper lip, and nose tip can be seen now!
Baby's knees and elbows are formed, and their hands and feet can bend. Although you may not feel your baby twisting in the womb, they are definitely moving.
At 8 weeks pregnant, your weight will likely increase by about 1.5 to 2.5 kg compared to before pregnancy. It’s common that you may start to feel some abdominal pain as the baby and the womb are growing. However, if you experience sharp pain with vaginal bleeding, please seek medical advice as soon as possible.
As your pregnancy hormones increase early in pregnancy, your breasts may swell and your nipples and areolas may become darker and more sensitive.
Vaginal milky white discharge (leucorrhea) will also increase. This protects the vagina and fetus from pathogens.
Expectant mothers may also experience a series of pregnancy symptoms during this week. The pregnancy symptoms include:
If there is vaginal bleeding during early pregnancy, you need to seek medical attention immediately for diagnosis. The doctor will take a detailed medical history of the woman and perform a pelvic ultrasound scan to check the baby's heartbeat to identify the risk of ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage.
Although you can go earlier, many pregnant women attend their first check-up between weeks 8 and 10. Usually, obstetricians will conduct an ultrasound scan to:
You will also learn about the schedule and details of the upcoming prenatal check-ups, such as prenatal blood tests (blood type, haemoglobin, platelets, and infectious disease screening), NIPT test, preeclampsia screening, structural ultrasound scanning, gestational diabetes testing, and Group B streptococcus test, etc.
After confirming the fatal heartbeat, the chance of miscarriage is greatly reduced (from 15% to 3-5%), but pregnant women should still pay attention to prevent miscarriage.
It is suggested to take supplements like folic acid (up to 12 weeks) , multivitamins, calcium, vitamin D, and DHA. Pay attention to a healthy diet and avoid uncooked food, such as raw fish, oysters, raw/soft-boiled eggs, soft-boiled beef, etc.
Slight changes in the smell of your vaginal discharge may be noticed in early pregnancy due to heightened sense of smell during pregnancy. In case of brown discharge, strong stench, or yellow-green vaginal discharge, itching, and pain in the genitals, you should consult your obstetrician as soon as possible.