Your Pregnancy Week 13

Your Baby

There is a lot going on with your baby this week. Your baby's intestines are migrating from the umbilical cord into his or her abdomen. The villi are also forming in the intestines, and these help in peristaltic movements and digestion. The liver begins to secrete bile and the pancreas is even secreting insulin! All twenty teeth have formed and are waiting under the gums, while your baby has begun to practice swallowing by taking in the surrounding amniotic fluid and pass it back in his urine. Your baby can smile and his vocal cords are quickly developing, too. He looks more and more human as his eyes move closer together and the ears are beginning to move to what will be their normal positions. Your baby weighs between approximately 13 and 20 grams (1/2 and 3/4 ounce) and is approximately 2 1/2 to 3 inches long. The placenta and baby are about the same weight now.

This week marks the end of the embryonic period. Most of the vital systems are developed now, and baby starts really growing, at times, growing as much as an inch this week.

Your Body

Many mothers state that this is the time when they feel their best. The early signs of pregnancy are over and you will find yourself with more energy. Also, this is the time when you will begin to feel pregnant. This is usually the most enjoyable and comfortable part of pregnancy as the feelings of sickness are ending (or soon will be) and your tummy is still small enough that it is not getting in the way or making you feel uncomfortable. Enjoy being pregnant. However, your body is working very hard right now, so you need to listen to the little clues it will give you, and make sure to get enough rest.

You may have been putting off telling others about your good news, but now would be a great time. This is also a time when fathers and other family members want to start becoming more involved as the pregnancy becomes more real for them. You can help them do this by encouraging them to participate in your pregnancy, but only to the extent that you feel comfortable.