Your little baby has officially hit the one-pound mark and is measuring at about 8 inches. That puts your little one around the size of a papaya! They’re growing so fast these days as they work up to their big debut. The eyelashes and eyebrows are now fully formed but your little one is still working on that head of hair. Believe it or not, at this point it’s still translucent so even if you could see your baby already, don’t cash in on that hair color wager just yet! Eye color also hasn’t developed yet so that bet is out as well.
Baby’s growth continues on the inside. The pancreas is developing further this week. This underrated organ is responsible for digestion and regulating blood sugar, which will become especially important once you introduce whole foods into their diet.
Baby is hard at work developing the senses this week. While there’s not too much in the form of tactile stimulation yet, baby is touching and gripping everything it can get its hands on, including their own little body parts and the very strong umbilical cord. Although it’s pretty dark inside your womb, your baby’s sense of sight is developing further. If you shine a flashlight on your tummy, you may notice a reaction from your little one. Those itty bitty ears are hard at work too. Baby can hear all kinds of sounds from your voice, your rumbling tummy, and one of their favorite and most comforting sounds – your heartbeat.
Baby is growing, but so are you. Those pesky stretch marks might be making an appearance as the skin around your belly, breasts, butt, hips, and thighs all grow to accommodate your growing child. The visibility of stretch marks is largely genetic so lighter-skinned women whose mothers had stretch marks can expect to have them as well. Unfortunately, there is no surefire way to prevent them from appearing. You’ve likely heard of applying moisturizers to reduce their appearance. While this has no proven impact on stretch marks, it does prevent the burning and itching that goes along with stretched skin so it is still beneficial. On the plus side, those purple or reddish hued lines zigzagging across your belly will fade to a less noticeable silvery shade after delivery.
Your belly isn’t the only thing stretching either. The relaxin hormone that helps your ligaments and joints relax to accommodate your child doesn’t pinpoint its target so you may notice that your shoes don’t fit so well these days. For now, find some comfy shoes with no more than a two-inch heel to spend your days in. You may find that the change is permanent and could result in a half size to whole size increase so feel free to use this as an excuse to update your shoe collection.
Since your belly is now clearly displaying that there’s a baby growing inside, you may find people who feel the need to touch your belly. If you’re a touchy feely person you may not mind in general, but that doesn’t mean you want the mailman or grocer entering your private bubble. Your best defense is to let people know you are uncomfortable with it. You can use your words or you can throw them off by placing your hand on their belly in return. Either way, you should politely let them know that the hands-on approach isn’t always best.
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