The 6th Week of Pregnancy

Feelings 6 weeksWhat happens to the fetus
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Signs and feelings at the 6th week of pregnancy

At this time, toxicosis increases. The expecting mother becomes more sensitive to odors, salivation and nausea are intensifying. The woman notes that she has become more irritable. The body begins to change visually: the breast swells, the areola around the nipples darken.

Although the fetus on the 6th week of pregnancy is rapidly growing and developing, the shape of the expectant mother remains the same. But there are signs such as absentmindedness, decrease of attention, drowsiness and fatigue. Due to the weakening of the blood vessels tone, the woman may suffer from headaches and even fainting. Since the skin is affected by a surge of hormones, acne may occur.

In the first trimester of pregnancy, such digestive disorders as constipation, intestinal colic and heartburn can be expected.

At an early stage of pregnancy, some women may be bothered by other symptoms :

1. Pulling ache or soreness in the abdomen. In the normal course of pregnancy, this is caused by a sprain in the abdominal cavity. There may also be tenderness in the lumbar region.

2. Increased amount of discharge. If it is light odorless and colorless, it’s all right. This is another evidence of hormonal changes in the body. Cottage cheese-like, heavy discharge and itching indicate an infection that often affects pregnant women – thrush, or candidiasis.

3. Frequent urination. The 6th week of pregnancy is a time when this characteristic symptom is already manifested. Although the stomach has not visually increased, the gradually growing uterus puts pressure on the bladder, causing a heightened urge to visit the toilet. It will accompany the future mother to the very childbirth.

Thrush is manifested by cottage cheese-like discharge and itching.

Don’t worry about the listed symptoms, they are completely normal at this stage of pregnancy.

What is happening to the fetus

The child changes noticeably. The sixth week of pregnancy is the time when:

  • a tail disappears;
  • a skull, bones and cartilage tissue are formed;
  • a chest becomes outlined;
  • a nose and eyes appear.

All systems of organs laid earlier continue to develop actively. The only exception is respiratory system – it begins to function as the baby takes its first breath. Now the fetus begins to form the digestive, urogenital and immune systems.

Amniotic fluid volume becomes larger, and the placenta begins to actively develop. By the 40th week, its weight will be around 800 grams. The “height” of the fetus is about 9 millimeters, while the weight reaches 1.3 grams. Because of its small size, the mother can’t yet feel the baby, even as it is moving very actively.

The 6th obstetric week of pregnancy is actually the 4th week from conception. The body shape of the baby at this stage resembles the letter C or looks like a curved oval. A fetal bladder is formed around it, the main function of which is protective. Until birth, it will protect the child from mechanical stress. The baby reacts to them, since the development of muscle tissue has already begun.

The formation of two chambers of the heart is an important stage of prenatal development – this is happening right now. The germ erythrocytes are produced, the first blood vessels, ventricle and atrium quickly grow. In a little while, a partition will appear and divide the heart into 4 chambers.

Starting from week 6, you can hear the fetal heartbeat on the ultrasound. Its rate is 110-130 beats per minute.

Every day the fetus looks more and more like a person. It has the rudiments of legs and arms, and in a week tiny fingers would begin to form. On the sides of the head appear ears in the form of bumps. The eye sockets and mouth are already visible.

What happens to the woman at the 6th week of pregnancy

Changes in the body

The body of a pregnant woman is changing gradually, but steadily. The chest begins to prepare for lactation. The bust of the future mother increases markedly in size due to increased blood circulation. The nipples swell, darken and become more sensitive, sometimes a venous mesh appears on the chest.

Not every woman can notice these changes in her body, especially with irregular menstrual cycles, frequent delays and unplanned pregnancy. Not everyone suffers from toxicosis either.

Hormonal changes

Most of these changes in the female body are due to a sharp increase in the level of progesterone – the “pregnancy hormone”. Each week after successful fertilization of the female egg, it grows exponentially, and by week 6 it reaches approximately 18.5 nmol/l. Thanks to progesterone, the body naturally preserves pregnancy. The release of this hormone reduces the tone of the uterus, preventing its reduction and lowering the risk of miscarriage. In addition, progesterone provides the intensity of blood flow in the uterus and its active growth.

The level of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which is secreted by germinal tissue, is also rapidly increasing.

One week after conception, a dynamic blood test can be used to confirm the fact of pregnancy. Pregnancy tests for domestic use follow the same principle of measuring the level of hCG in the urine. Conducted at the 6th week, such test will confirm with high accuracy that a woman is expecting a baby.

Uterine enlargement at the 6th week of pregnancy

The new status of the woman is not yet visible to those around her: the stomach at the 6th week of pregnancy is not round enough to make it noticeable. However, important processes take place inside. During the examination, the gynecologist may already notice that the uterus is enlarged compared to the normal state. By this date, it has the size of a large plum, and a little person is growing inside in leaps and bounds. Slight pain in the lower abdomen speaks about the growth of the uterus – the amazing female organ, which will soon become larger several times.

Toxicosis

Under the influence of hormones, most women experience an unpleasant condition called early toxicosis. The 6th week of pregnancy can be the beginning, and those who have already faced with the manifestations of toxicosis can feel its significant increase. However, not all expecting mothers suffer from this condition.

Toxicosis is one of the brightest characteristic signs of pregnancy. Its main symptoms are:

  • nausea in the morning or all day;
  • vomiting;
  • loss of appetite;
  • increased salivation;
  • change in taste preferences;
  • drowsiness and weakness.

Toxicosis worsens the general state of health of the pregnant woman, and the body weight can drop dramatically.

If the condition has deteriorated further, it’s best to seek medical attention. The doctor will help to cope with early toxicosis, give useful tips and correct diet.

To alleviate the condition, it is recommended to:

  • eat in small portions, 5-6 times a day;
  • remove from the diet the producyts that cause nausea and the urge to vomit;
  • drink more fluids to avoid dehydration;
  • limit contact with strongly smelling perfumes, deodorants, household chemicals;
  • rest more, get enough sleep;
  • avoid stress.

Visit to the doctor at the 6th week of pregnancy

The sixth obstetric week of pregnancy is the best time to visit an obstetrician-gynecologist. The doctor will conduct an examination, refer to the necessary tests, put you under regular medical check-up, and prescribe a vitamin complex, if necessary. For every woman there is a so-called exchange card. There are information about her health, past, chronic and hereditary diseases, vaccinations, previous pregnancies and childbirth. All this allows to make the correct obstetric history and identify possible problems and risks in time.

After getting registered for pregnancy, you need to visit specialists: an ophthalmologist, a dentist, an endocrinologist, an otolaryngologist, a cardiologist, etc.

It will be necessary to pass a series of blood analysis: CBC, for STDs, glucose test, for the level of progesterone and hCG. Be ready for the regular common urine test throughout pregnancy.

Before the first visit to the women’ health clinic, it is useful to write down all your questions, so as not to forget to ask the doctor.

Ultrasound and photo of the fetus

6-week pregnancy can be a reason for an ultrasound scan only if the doctor suggests that there is more than one fetus, or the woman has a history of miscarriages and cases of ectopic pregnancy. In a typical situation, there is no need for an ultrasound examination at this time. Ultrasound imaging is usually carried out with a transvaginal sensor – this method is more informative at this stage. The future mother will be able to hear her baby’s heart beating, to see it on the monitor screen and in the photo. The doctor makes conclusions about the location of the ovum, its size and the exact duration of pregnancy.

Dangers

Ectopic pregnancy

This is one of the main dangers of the first trimester. In case of an ectopic pregnancy, the embryo has not been implanted into the uterine cavity, as is normal. It finds itself in some other place, most often in the fallopian tube. There it develops until there is enough space, and then its growth leads to a tube collapse. This can happen at a period of 5-6 weeks. The most dangerous thing about ectopic pregnancy is heavy bleeding. Without proper medical assistance, a woman can lose a lot of blood, which can be fatal.

Recognizing ectopic pregnancy on your own is difficult – its symptoms are similar to the normal pregnancy.

The improper location of the ovum can be diagnosed by using ultrasound or hCG analysis, the figures of which will not increase as rapidly as during normal pregnancy.

If a vaginal bleeding begins, accompanied by severe one-sided abdominal pain, this is a sure sign of a dangerous diagnosis. At the slightest suspicion of an ectopic pregnancy, urgent hospitalization is necessary.

Missed miscarriage

Sudden stop of the pregnancy is no less dangerous pathology. The problem is that the fetus ceases to develop at some stage and perishes right in the womb. This most often occurs precisely in the first trimester. The missed miscarriage is impossible to predict. Its main reasons are:

  • hormone imbalance;
  • infectious diseases;
  • abnormal blood clotting ability;
  • chromosome breakage in embryonic development;
  • use of alcohol, drugs.

Since the woman can’t feel the baby moving at the 6th week, she learns about the missed miscarriage by indirect signs. Its symptoms are as follows:

  • spotting blood-tinged discharge;
  • weakness, chills and fever;
  • pulling, spasmodic pain in the lower abdomen;
  • ache and swelling of the mammary glands disappear;
  • hCG levels begin to decline instead of increasing.

Having identified these signs, you should seek emergency medical care. The diagnosis can be confirmed with the help of an ultrasound.

Danger of brown discharge

Discharges at week 6 can be of a different nature and indicate both the various problems in the interaction of mother and fetus, and the normal course of pregnancy. Both spotting and brown discharge are always a disturbing symptom. They can speak of the beginning miscarriage or separation of the ovum.

Brown discharge, even scarce, should be a reason for immediate visit to the doctor. This can help preserve the health of the woman and the life of the baby.

Diseases

The first weeks are the most important in the development of the fetus, because now the main organs and systems are being formed. At this stage of pregnancy, the future mother should monitor her state of health very carefully, because it directly affects whether the baby will be healthy.

Self-medication is unacceptable with the flu, cold or viral infection. Many common drugs and herbs are prohibited at this stage.

Food poisoning is also dangerous, as all substances and toxins from the mother’s body are inevitably transferred to the baby. To avoid this, you should eat out only in trusted places and to use only fresh and quality products for cooking.

It is equally important to identify and treat a urinary tract infection in time. Its pathogen can penetrate the amniotic fluid through the vaginal microflora and adversely affect the development of the fetus, especially if it has not yet attached to the wall of the uterus.

It should also be remembered that the body temperature of +37°C at week 6 is quite normal.

Recommendations for the expectant mother

In the normal course of pregnancy at this time, the woman continues to lead a normal life. The doctors advise:

  • not to take hot baths;
  • avoid injuries and falls;
  • not to lift weights;
  • avoid alcohol and potent drugs.

This applies not only for the 6th week, but for the entire first trimester.

It is not recommended to adopt pets during this period, and if you already have pets, ask your households to take care of them.

Pets may be hosts of toxoplasmosis – the infection dangerous for pregnant women.

Diet of the expecting mother

At the beginning of pregnancy, it is very important to adhere to the principles of a healthy and balanced diet. You should avoid any harmful food (fried, fatty, spicy dishes) and carbonated drinks. This will improve your well-being and relieve digestive problems. Eat more fiber to avoid constipation. If you suffer from toxicosis, drink more water and eat fractional portions. A diverse diet of the future mother is the basis of a good metabolism. This is necessary for normal weight gain, as well as for the harmonious development of the fetus.

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