1st trimester of pregnancy

What's Covered

Entering the first trimester is a heavenly feeling. A journey from I’m expecting to when the baby will come out. A new life developing in your womb. GOD chooses you to partake new soul. These changes can be sometimes good or odd but in the end, they are worth struggling for. A lot of things happen during this trimester; the divisions of cells, implantation to the womb, and at the end a mass that you can call a baby. You won’t be able to feel the movement but an odd feeling (bloating) tells you something is developing inside your body.

What happens in the first trimester of pregnancy?

When you focus on flowing with the changes you are forthcoming with either physical or emotional you will be more confident in your pregnancy. You may face mood swings like anger, sadness, excitement, fatigue, dizziness, cravings, heartburn, nausea, increased urination, and a feeling of uncomforting. Sometimes you just get overprotected in fear of losing your baby or stepping into an unhealthy pregnancy. The baby is in its developmental stage; you will not get to see your bump but this invisible bond has been mend in your womb.

How do you feel in the first trimester of pregnancy?

You will feel more lethargic with body cramps, nausea, or morning sickness. That bloating feeling is so uncomfortable. Even if you sleep for 12 hours you will be in need of more sleep as your body is adjusting to the changes. To have a sound sleep you may find a cozy pillow to put between your legs.

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Duration of the first trimester

This trimester continues till week 12. It mainly counts in from the last period you have till the week twelve of your embryonic development. It happens to be the most mystified trimester as most abortions occur in this trimester. No need to worry though, you can overhaul by holding your grip on a healthy beginning.

Body changes in the first trimester of pregnancy

The very first noticeable thing about pregnancy is that you will miss a period. A little fever may be faced (after implantation of the placenta the rise in temperature drops). Some devour swelling under eyelids, if these swellings under-eye persists make sure you discuss it with your doctor as this could be a sign of diabetes or thyroid imbalance. You will also surface swellings on your breasts, nipples may also enlarge. It will be difficult for you to wear a bra on the sore breasts though, better to massage them. No matter how much you pee you will feel that you are about to pee again. The vagina will be wetter (as levels of hormones increases) you feel a discharge is coming out (if it smells bad better to seek medical assistance). Feeling nausea most of the time is the supreme challenging thing to contest for. You may pursue some taste changers like candies, gummies, or anything sour to avoid nausea.

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Is there a heartbeat at the 5th week of pregnancy?

In concern with baby`s health inside, through vaginal ultrasound, we can detect the heartbeat sound of the baby which represents that the baby is okay. It also lowers the chances of miscarriages and helps in locating complications at an earlier stage.[1]

Is it safe to have multiple ultrasounds in the first trimester of pregnancy?

In a healthy pregnancy, there is only a one-time scan. Conversely, scans number varies in each pregnancy. Normally scan/ultrasound is done in the 5th week or 8th week to make sure the baby is healthy and not facing any complications.  In case of unhealthy pregnancies or complications, some may recommend more scans or even a weekly ultrasound too. No data or confirmation is made yet that ultrasound can cause miscarriages.[2]

How to know the baby is ok in the first trimester of pregnancy?

The safest way is to have a pelvic examination or pap tests. Pelvic examinations will let us know if the environment for the new baby inside the mother is safe and developed properly or not by checking the size and structure of the pelvic bones. Your body change analysis by a doctor would be a great help to let you know if you are undernutrition or obese. About one in six mothers suffer hypoglycemia some may also suffer diabetes. So these things will clue to the health of your baby. [3]

Foods that can harm in the first trimester of pregnancy

A big no to alcohols, poorly cooked meat, raw eggs, cheese. The fetus is subtler towards the drugs, radiations, and medications. For the safer side, it is better to avoid the food left for more than 2 hours. Lemmatized the intake of caffeine. Avoid papaya or eggplant as they contracted the uterus if taken more than a moderate form. However, there is no scientific proof for pineapple inducing the labor harms but all it can do is cause acid reflux or heartburns during pregnancy so better to avoid it. In addition to that beverages and a lot of sugar intake are prohibited.

Symptoms of miscarriage/abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy

In many cases, the apparent cause cannot be located for abortions all you need is to make sure you are in line with your doctor and try to notice the signs given by your body. Cramping with severe back pain. Bleeding through the vagina, in some cases a tissue may discharge or a spot may be seen. Some may have clots from the vagina or a brown to pink color discharge coming out. Fever with mild contractions may protract. One can also observe a decreased weight.

Diet to follow in the first trimester of pregnancy

The major element required during pregnancy to a mother`s body is iron. Add supplements as per the doctor`s recommendations. Whatever diet plan you follow make sure it has iron, calcium, & vitamins intake in it in a moderate form. Green vegetables, whole grains, yogurt, bananas, berries, apples, kiwis, citrus fruits (lemon, oranges, bergamot), watermelon, lean proteins.

Best exercises and workouts for the first trimester of pregnancy

It is challenging to do exercise when you feel exhausted but to remain healthy and active you have to practice exercise 3-5 times a week at least. The safest of all is yoga. Try to choose low impact exercises like pilates, side-lying lifts, and squats. On a lighter note, you can start by stretching muscles only or a simple walk may help to kick-start your body. Avoid jumping, or weight lifting exercises. Please be cautious and conscious rather stop exercising immediately if you see amniotic discharge, vaginal bleeding, difficulty in breathing, or dizziness. Feeling stress in the body is natural in pregnancy to comfort yourself you can also use any kind of stress relief pillows.

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How much weight do you put on in the first trimester of pregnancy?

The weight gain is not a fixed chart some gain much weight some gain low weight, the important part is to have a healthy pregnancy and let a healthy baby comes out. However, being obese can be a concern as it may be a sign of diabetes. The research-based analysis in the past shows that on average in the first trimester of pregnancy the body of the mother gains the weight of about 0.5 – 2.0kg. For such weight gain analysis, the BMI (Body mass index of a mother) is important to consider. In addition to the BMI in pregnancy, there are other factors too which are the key elements for weight calculations such as the fat mass, body mass, water mass bone mass (fat-free mass.) [4]. Though, the weight will be more than you used to have before pregnancy. So, keeping yourself at ease make sure your wardrobe is added with cozy and comfy clothing. Exclude tight pants during pregnancy, better to opt an elastic comfy maternity pants/trousers which can provide your belly support and back pain. If they can snuggle with your body they are ideal.

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Do`s & Don’ts in the first trimester of pregnancy

Do add some candies or gummies to fight morning sickness or nausea. Snacks and hydrating drinks are a must if you travel in pregnancy. Some get nausea from a bad smell it is better to keep essence on your first hand. Smelling a good perfume or talc may give relief immediately. Don’t treat yourself with sauna or steam baths to end up as an overheat dismal. In the 6th week, your baby`s heartbeat can be heard. By the end of the first trimester, his body will be formed. So make sure in this precious trimester you remember what to do and what to not do.

Balance Rest

Take rest, do not overburden yourself as the hormonal imbalance may lead to poor physical condition. You may also feel emotionally drained, just take a break. It is important to listen to the signals your body gave to you in pregnancies. The first trimester is critical for both of you, your baby`s organs are forming so you need to be careful regarding stress. Make sure to not take a plenteously rest that muscle just overlook to move.

Nausea & morning sickness

Fighting with morning sickens is a real war. To avoid nausea ginger can be a life savior. Eat small portions to avoid vomits. Don’t get scared or getting the guilt of eating less, your baby is having food from the yolk sac. The baby will get nutrients from your body. Stay healthy and eat small portions to remain stable and avoid vomits. Some may experience constipation; drink lots of water you may have to pee a lot but this will keep you hydrated. Dietary fiber intake is also helpful but if still, constipation persists consult the doctor.

Wise food choices

Food cravings are real in pregnancies. Choose wisely between your cravings, like if you are craving spices choose sauces or salsa. If you are craving something sweet, choose fruits. If you are craving a snack, choose nuts. If you are craving fast food, choose low oil fries. Prefer to have homemade organic food.

Stretch marks

To avoid stretch marks in the future, add any bio-oil to your daily life. Don’t scratch your belly consistently, as this will make permanent dark stretch marks on your belly. To evade this, you possibly add a lotion to your routine since the first trimester started till the pregnancy ends.

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Self-medications

The biggest Don’t is to stop taking medications on your own. You can ask your doctor, it’s their niche, not yours. Stop self-medication as you are connected to another soul, it’s not about you only now. Even if you want to take multivitamins seek your doctor`s help as your body is already going through chemical/hormonal changes don’t feed it with more chemicals on your own.[5]

Can I bend in the first trimester of pregnancy?

Bending can be critical but it is not that you cannot bend. It is better to keep your back posture straight and bend from sideward. Do not bend from the front side or belly directly as this will press the belly. The pain is consistent in pregnancy. All you need is to evaluate the pain. At times you may feel menstruation-like pain in the abdomen which is mainly because your womb is increasing its size. You may also feel pain in your legs and back. If the pain is increased in the lower belly take immediate notice. As intense pain in the lower belly is odd. Consulting a doctor would be loftier.

Why sleeping on the left side is better in the first trimester of pregnancy?

The logic behind this is mainly to provide your body a proper flow of blood. It is ideal to sleep on the sides, not on the back or stomach. The left side is preferred as our larger vein runs in parallel to the spine on the right side. If we sleep on the left side it will allow the body to flow the blood properly. Also, the liver lies on the right side so it is better to avoid pressure on it and let the baby reside on the opposite flank.

Sex in the first trimester of pregnancy

Sex can be nauseous and exhausting to mothers. It cannot clue to miscarriages; it is a mythos. Well, let’s get it logical, the baby inside cannot see anything coming and the Penis is not allowed to enter beyond the natural limits more than a vagina. So it is safe until the doctor advised not to do so. However, some mothers may lose the urge for sex and some feel more aroused. They might not enjoy it all or they might be at the peak of sensations. Later on, it is not recommended as it creates the sensations of mild contractions but in the first trimester, it is not the case. If the water bag is broken or the mother is having any infection beneath or any other transmissible disease is diagnosed in your partner, it is advised not to have sex. Be mindful in sex positions as a bad position may elicit pain in the mother’s body. It is better to have sex from lateral sides or partner behind.

Vaginal bleeding or a spot in the first trimester of pregnancy

Indeed, it is an alarming situation to seek immediate help from your doctor. As it may be a sign of placental dysfunction. It is not necessary every time that bleeding is for abortion, the appearance of color, pain, and level of bleeding differs from situation to situation but it is also not something to be ignored. Some women may face a little spotting still medical assistance is required as this may trigger another issue. [6]

Foods to avoid & Diet plan to follow in the first trimester of pregnancy

In the first trimester, you might not have to deal with extra calories but you need to develop a routine and increase the diet gradually. As ultimately it is about the health of your baby and you. Say no to drugs, smoking, and alcohol. Eliminate the fast food, carbonated drinks, and frozen foods from your diet. Eat-in portions, plan your meals sensibly. As eating more is not a good thing, it will only lead to obesity, eating healthy and moderate is an upright thing. [7]

Portions meal:

At least plan 5 meals portions for your diet plans. Focus on food items that can be digested easily. Make sure the liquid intake is greater than you used to take before pregnancy. Avoid high fat, fried and spicy foods to avoid heartburn and acid refluxes. Keep in mind the essential nutrients i.e., proteins, iron, vitamin C, DHA, calcium, iodine, fats, and folic acid. Add fruits (berries especially), egg yolk, vegetables, and whole grains to fulfill these nutrients. In your meals raise your iron level intake to evade anemia. Eat iron-rich green vegetables like spinach, asparagus, broccoli, kale, lentils, chickpeas, etc. Don’t forget to add the dairy product preferably yogurt as it will be the source of calcium. Beans will add a protein factor to your meals. Whole grains will aid in the proper bowel movements. Whole-grain bread can be a rich source of fiber. Fishes with low-level mercury can be a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. However, be conscious to eat fish (high levels of mercury). Also avoid cheese (especially in pizza), raw cook egg, or poorly cooked meat. On snack time between meals have a fruit it will get you nutrient, fulfill your hunger, and also lessens nausea.[8]

Final thoughts:

Meanwhile, you started taking care of yourself, your partner gets more empathetic towards you. However, keep in mind the symptoms may differ as everybody has their way to respond to the changes in pregnancy. Not everything you read implies on you. The data on the internet is to share ideas and experiences of oneself. So, don’t think too much let the doctors decide for you. Finest you can do being a mother is, be a peaceful and healthy mother.


[1] Dias, T., et al. “First‐trimester ultrasound determination of chorionicity in twin pregnancy.” Ultrasound in obstetrics & gynecology 38.5 (2011): 530-532.

[2] Jauniaux, E., J. Johns, and G. J. Burton. “The role of ultrasound imaging in diagnosing and investigating early pregnancy failure.” Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology: The Official Journal of the International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology 25.6 (2005): 613-624.

[3] Poon, Liona C., et al. “The first-trimester of pregnancy–A window of opportunity for prediction and prevention of pregnancy complications and future life.” Diabetes research and clinical practice 145 (2018): 20-30.

[4] Fattah, Chro, et al. “Maternal weight and body composition in the first trimester of pregnancy.” Acta obstetricia et gynecologica Scandinavica 89.7 (2010): 952-955.

[5] Thorpe, Phoebe G., et al. “Medications in the first trimester of pregnancy: most common exposures and critical gaps in understanding fetal risk.” Pharmacoepidemiology and drug safety 22.9 (2013): 1013-1018.

[6] Hasan, Reem, et al. “Patterns and predictors of vaginal bleeding in the first trimester of pregnancy.” Annals of epidemiology 20.7 (2010): 524-531.

[7] Liu, Fang-Li, et al. “Nutrient intakes of pregnant women and their associated factors in eight cities of China: a cross-sectional study.” Chinese medical journal 128.13 (2015): 1778.

[8] Kominiarek, Michelle A., and Priya Rajan. “Nutrition recommendations in pregnancy and lactation.” Medical Clinics 100.6 (2016): 1199-1215.

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Author

Vivian Perry

Vivian Perry

Mother of 3 kids. Enjoy reading parenting books and studied child care degree. Vivian loves to learn and write about parenting tips and help her kids to grow positively with grit mindset.
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