Photo: Mandy Milks, Erik Putz, Anthony Swaneveld. Felt: thefeltstore.com
Your baby is the size of a strawberry this week! Her bones and cartilage are now forming, and she is able to kick her tiny legs—though you won’t be able to feel it yet. At ten weeks pregnant, her organs are fully formed and beginning to function, too. She’s practising her swallowing, and her fingernails and hair are starting to grow.
At your next prenatal visit, you’ll probably be able to hear your baby’s heartbeat with the use of a handheld Doppler device—you might want to bring your partner to this one. (However, if the technician or midwife can’t find a heartbeat, don’t freak out: Sometimes the baby is uncooperative or hanging out in a hard-to-locate position or the placenta is in the way. An ultrasound is a much more reliable method for hearing that rapid swoosh-swoosh-swoosh sound.)Inside Creative House / Getty Images
If you’re bolting upright in bed because you’re sure that a huge bear was chasing you (or something much, much weirder), relax! It’s a common experience during pregnancy. Dreams commonly occur during REM sleep and, because you’re more likely to be waking up through the night (thanks to heartburn, restless legs syndrome and that pesky bladder), you’re more likely to experience REM sleep and remember your dreams. Add the anxiety and emotions that come with finding out that you’re having a baby and it makes sense that your dreams are helping your brain process everything.
Mild stomach cramps are common around ten weeks pregnant (they usually feel milder than period cramps), and they’re often described as a slight tugging sensation in your abdomen. That’s your uterus beginning to stretch as it grows at an exponential rate. Lower back pain sometimes sets in around this time, too, due to the pressure of your changing uterus. Back pain usually happens earlier if it’s not your first baby because weaker abdominal muscles put more strain on your back. If your cramps feel worse than those of your period, touch base with your healthcare provider.
A warm beanbag or bath can help alleviate these aches (but watch the temperature, as it shouldn’t turn your skin red). It’s usually best to avoid most medications during your first 12 weeks of pregnancy, so talk to your healthcare provider before taking any pain medication. Generally, acetaminophen (a.k.a. Tylenol) is considered OK in small amounts. (Don’t exceed more than 4,000 milligrams in a 24-hour period. The usual dose is 325 to 650 milligrams per pill.)PixelsEffect / Getty Images
With all the nausea and fatigue you’re battling in the first trimester, exercise may be the last thing you want to do. But there are a lot of benefits to staying active during your pregnancy. Making fitness a priority can help regulate weight gain and prepare your body for all the changes that are coming, and it won’t hurt or “jostle” the baby. You can also think of it as training for the ultra-marathon otherwise known as childbirth.
If you’re already exercising regularly, be sure to let any instructors or trainers know that you’re expecting. Don’t forget to clear the clutter from your workout space because your changing balance and loose ligaments will make you clumsier than ever. Low-impact exercise, such as water aerobics, free weights and prenatal yoga or Pilates (avoiding certain exercises that require doing deep twists, lying on your tummy or staying on your back for long periods), with a certified instructor are good options for pregnancy, but make sure to check in with your healthcare provider before taking on any new routines.
Bonus: Exercise can help you sleep more soundly, which can mean really good things for balancing those mood swings.
Are you gearing up to share your big news with the world in the next couple of weeks? If you feel ready, posting a cute pic to social media is extra-efficient. Or you can go old school with actual paper card announcements (throwback!). Here are 15 creative and hilarious ways that other expectant parents chose to spill the beans.Anna Kurzaeva / Getty Images
You know what they say: “go big or go home.” This Star Wars-crazed Texas family definitely decided to do the former. Making a movie poster using your favourite movie (either old or upcoming) is an easy way to create a punny pregnancy announcement.Photo: Zack Russell
You’re going to have to tell a whole bunch of people, so if you’re going to send some old-fashioned cards via snail mail, you might as well get creative.Source: imgur.com via @Pinterest
Like I said: creative. And this card definitely is. It gets right down to the nitty-gritty. Ha!Source: etsy.com/ca/shop/JulieAnnArt via @Pinterest
Mama and Papa’s socks are hung out to dry. And wait a minute—a wee pair for wee person. They really couldn’t have chosen a cuter pair of socks.Source: twentytwowords.com via @Pinterest
Look at the beaming smile on her face and the wary grin on his…Source: vitamin-ha.com via @Pinterest
Now, this one is awesome. Do you and your significant other get lost in the World of Warcraft on the regular but are planning to spend more time in the realm of Little Big Planet? This might just be the way to break the big news.Source: 9gag.com via @Pinterest
Ha ha ha! We editors have been humming the tune to this song for the past 30 minutes. Ice, ice, baby. Bravo to this couple. Definitely one of our favourites.Source: dumpaday.com via @Pinterest
(Cue a chorus of ‘awwws’.)Source: mylittleme.com via @Pinterest
Hey! Who do those itty bitty sandals belong to? They sure don’t belong to mom and dad. The cuteness! We can barely handle it.Source: thestorkiscoming.com via @Pinterest
Love… Marriage… What rhymes with marriage? B-b-baby carriage? That’s got to be it.Source: pinterest007.blogspot.uk via @Pinterest
This is such a great idea for couples announcing their pregnancy during the holidays. Teeny red and green feet, with Christmas trees to boot! O Holy night indeed…Source: etsy.com/ca/shop/JellybeanApparel via @Pinterest
Oh, don’t mind us while we spend the next 20 minutes ooh-ing and awww-ing. Awww… Awww…Source: newagepregnancy.com via @Pinterest
Adorbs! These new parents have literally put a bun in an actual oven. Dad’s even got his oven mitt on to help deliver it. Now that’s what we’d call proactive.Source: brit.co via @Pinterest
Idioms are great; they never get old.Source: diaperchamp.com via @Pinterest
We blame dogs for all sorts of things; eating homework is just one of them. So when you’re unsure about how to announce your happy news to the world, get your furry pal to do it for you.Source: hative.com via @Pinterest
Bikinis, Rock Band, PS3—it’s all got to go. You really won’t have time for much else besides burping, diaper changing and baby bouncing for the next year or so anyhow…Source: blog.canvaspop.com via @Pinterest
A name doesn’t have to honour a beloved relative to be meaningful. There are other ways to make sure that your baby’s name signifies something special to you or holds sentimental value.Vera Vita / Getty Images
Depending on your age, risk factors and personal preferences, prenatal screenings will begin in the next week or two (see week 11 to find out more about the process). Prenatal screenings are not required, so it’s a good idea to discuss your options with your healthcare provider and your partner at your first prenatal visit. If you plan to go ahead with the testing, you’ll need to book appointments for bloodwork and an ultrasound (they usually need to happen on the same day).Weekend Images Inc. / Getty Images
Now is a good time to take a closer look at what kinds of cleaning products you’re using around the house and consider swapping them out for options that are non-hazardous. Be sure to read all labels for warnings about pregnant women. Beware of greenwashing, though: Not everything labelled “natural” is actually any better or safer. But if you can afford it, switching to eco-friendly and organic options can’t hurt. They’re also less likely to have a chemical smell, which your newly sensitive nose will appreciate. In any case, wear gloves when cleaning and open windows for ventilation. (Or, better yet, make your partner take over your to-do list!)
One chore that you should definitely delegate to someone else right now is changing the litterbox if you’re a cat owner. Cat poop (in a litterbox, a sandbox or garden soil) can contain a parasite that causes a flu-like infection called toxoplasmosis. Wearing gloves, washing your hands with soap and water and making sure that the litterbox is changed daily can also reduce your risk. While toxoplasmosis sounds scary (an infection during pregnancy could cause birth defects), know that indoor cats are less likely to carry it than outdoor or stray cats and that some adults are already immune to toxoplasmosis because they’ve had it before (and never noticed symptoms). Your doctor can order a blood test to check.
Bonus: Exercising caution, babyproofing that litterbox and reading labels will give you a head start on how to make your home healthier and safer for your baby once she arrives.
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