Despite their symptoms, many women are still unsure whether they’re actually pregnant during the third week, so they either take over-the-counter pregnancy tests or visit their OB/GYN.
If you’re unsure whether you’re pregnant, you should contact your OB/GYN to confirm at this point. After confirmation of an existing pregnancy, an obstetrician should be selected to keep in contact with over the next nine months.
If you don’t have one, or you’re unsure about selecting a good obstetrician, you can ask your family or friends for a recommendation. Once you’ve made an appointment with your obstetrician, make a list of questions for the first visit.
Your questions should include how often visits should take place, necessary changes that need to be made to diet and lifestyle, what vitamins you should take, and whether any medications you may be taking need to be reviewed.
If this is your first pregnancy, your thoughts and emotions will be racing, so be sure not to forget to ask about something that is important to you.
Symptoms and Body Changes at 3 Weeks
Even though the baby is growing in size, during the third week many women actually lose weight due to nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite caused by the hormonal changes. Cramps and vaginal discharge are also very common.
So although there aren’t many external changes occurring, it’s important to remember that the internal changes that are occurring are critical, especially during the early stages.
Your obstetrician will probably tell you that you don’t necessarily need to stop working or cancel any activities at this stage. Your obstetrician probably will also advise you to increase your nutrient intake.
Dairy products, leafy green vegetables, red meats, and legumes are great sources of folic acid, calcium, protein, and iron, all of which help develop strong bones, muscles, and tissues in the baby. Plus, a healthy diet can help you to manage the mood swings brought on by the hormonal changes.
During the third week the baby is called a morula. A morula is a ball of cells that is constantly multiplying. About 30 hours after fertilization occurs, the morula begins to divide into two cells, then four, then eight and so on, as it moves from the fallopian tubes to the uterus.
As the morula travels, it becomes known as a blastocyst, and it hollows out and fills with fluid. By the end of the week implantation occurs, meaning the blastocyst attaches to the lining of the uterus, or the endometrium.
Once it has attached, the endometrium provides nutrients and removes waste from the embryo. Specific parts of the baby are beginning to take shape.
Features such as gender and eye, hair, and skin color have already been determined, and the brain, head, spinal cord, and gastrointestinal tract are developing.
The heart starts beating, and the size of the baby varies from .2 mm to .5 mm. This can be a very exciting time for new parents, as they can get their first glimpse of their new baby.
Pregnancy Week 3 Tips
- Ask friends and family to recommend a good gynecologist and/or obstetrician in your area.
- Don’t quit your job – continue your normal activities until you are told to stop.
- Begin eating foods that are important for your baby’s development, if you haven’t done so already.
Next week makes one month! Find out what happens during the 4th week of pregnancy.