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Pregnancy Week by Week : Week 9 (part 1) - How Your Baby Is Growing and Developing

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1. How Big Are You?

Your waistline may be growing thicker. This occurs as your uterus fills your pelvic area and starts to grow up into the tummy area.

2. Celiac Disease

Celiac disease, also called celiac sprue, nontropical sprue and glutensensitive enteropathy, is a digestive disease that affects the small intestine. If you have celiac disease, you have an allergy to gluten, which is found in wheat, oats, rye and barley. This allergy causes your immune system to attack your intestines so you absorb fewer nutrients. Symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating, irritability and depression.

How Is Pregnancy Weight Distributed?

When a baby is born, an average-weight mother should have gained between 25 and 35 pounds. A woman who has gained 30 pounds may see her weight distributed as shown below.

11 pounds

Fat, protein and other nutrients in mom

4 pounds

Increased fluid volume

2 pounds

Breast enlargement

2 pounds

Uterus

7½ pounds

Baby

2 pounds

Amniotic fluid

1½ pounds

Placenta

The condition is hereditary and occurs more often in women than men. It’s most common in Western Europeans and rare in Africans and Asians. We believe celiac disease affects 1 in 100 people worldwide and 1 in every 133 Americans. It may be overlooked during pregnancy because symptoms can be the same as for other problems. Many healthcare providers don’t know much about the disease, and it can be difficult to diagnose.

A blood test can determine if you may have a problem with celiac disease. A biopsy of the small intestine can confirm it.

If you have celiac disease, it’s important to have it under control before pregnancy by eating a gluten-free diet. You can learn whether a food contains gluten by reading labels because manufacturers are required by law to list this information. Many foods are now gluten-free. Because folic acid is found in many fortified grain products, you will probably need supplements to ensure you receive enough folic acid.

Tip for Week 9

It’s an old wives’ tale that your hair won’t curl if you have a permanent during pregnancy. Our only precaution is that if odors affect you, the fumes from a permanent or hair coloring could make you feel ill.

Celiac disease may appear for the first time during pregnancy or after childbirth. If you have symptoms, talk to your healthcare provider. You may need to meet with a dietician to develop a nutritional meal plan.

3. Changes in You

Your blood system changes a lot during pregnancy, and the amount of blood in your body, called blood volume, increases as much as 50%. Higher blood volume helps meet the demands of your growing baby and helps protect you both. It’s also important during labor and delivery, when some blood is lost.

Increased blood volume begins during the first trimester. The greatest increase occurs in the second trimester. It continues to increase but at a slower rate during the third trimester.

Dad Tip

Ask your partner which prenatal visits she’d like you to attend. Some couples attend every visit together, when possible. Ask her to let you know the date and time of each appointment.

The increase in red blood cells increases your body’s need for iron and can cause anemia. If you’re anemic during pregnancy, you may get tired easily or feel ill.

4. How Your Baby Is Growing and Developing

If you could look inside your uterus, you’d see many changes in your baby.

Baby’s arms and legs are longer. Fingers are longer, and the tips are slightly enlarged where touch pads are developing. The feet are approaching the midline of the body and may meet in front of the torso.

The head is more erect, and the neck is more developed. The pupil forms this week, and the optic nerve begins to form. Eyelids almost cover the eyes; up to this time, eyes have been uncovered. External ears are evident and well formed. Your baby now moves its body and limbs. This movement may be seen during an ultrasound exam.

Image

Embryo at 9 weeks of pregnancy (fetal age—46 to 49 days).
Toes are formed and feet are more recognizable.
Crown-to-rump length is about 1 inch (25mm).

The baby looks more recognizable as a human being, although it is still extremely small. But you still can’t tell the difference between a boy and a girl. You won’t be able to do that for another few weeks.

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