First trimester of pregnancy: what to know

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Philippe Gloaguen
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The first trimester of pregnancy

Even if nothing is seen on the outside, the first quarter it is the most important phase for the subsequent continuation of the pregnancy.





Even before the menstrual delay and the positive pregnancy test, the hormones, especially estrogen and progesterone, increase, leading to the first changes in the body. It is only with the skip of the cycle that the first visible signs begin along with breast enlargement, nausea, changes in sensitivity, taste and smell.

Read also: First months of pregnancy

Symptoms

Towards the sixth-eighth week the uterus increases in volume, the vagina and vulva appear soft. Around the tenth the weight begins to increase, the breasts become heavier and as they grow they give a feeling of tension, the blood volume increases, the heart and lungs have to work harder. There is a lot of urge to urinate and the nausea will only subside towards the end of this trimester. Constipation and frequent menstrual-like pains may appear. The desire to sleep increases and if nausea and vomiting are not intense, appetite increases. Blood pressure is lowered and heart rate increases.



First trimester of pregnancy, weeks

The first trimester of pregnancy starts from the moment of conception and ends at 12th week and 6 days. In detail:



  • 1st month: starts from the first day of the last menstruation (0 weeks + 0 days) and ends at 4 weeks + 3 days
  • 2nd month: from 4 weeks + 4 days to 8 weeks + 5 days
  • 3rd month: from 8 weeks + 6 days to 13 weeks + 1 day

First trimester, the weight

The weight in the first three months of gestation does not change much. You can certainly feel a marked hunger and the need to have a few more snacks or to indulge some particular food craving. However, it is very important to start following one right away balanced and complete dietary style to avoid putting on weight immediately, since as the weeks go by, the growth of the fetus, amniotic fluid, water retention and fat reserves will certainly contribute to weight gain.

First trimester of pregnancy, pains

In the first months of pregnancy, pains are physiological lower abdomen, similar to those related to menstruation, and breast tenderness and a little pain are also normal breast.

The risks

They may appear small blood loss but they are not always a sign of a threat of abortion. However, notify your gynecologist. If it is true that in the first quarter there is the greatest risk of miscarriage is also true that this could happen without any symptom and that the cause often remains unknown. The incidence decreases significantly in the second and third trimesters

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Nine months of sweet expectation

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What not to do

Avoid x-rays or take them while protecting the abdomen, do not use contrast media. It is good to avoid exposure to smog as much as possible and to avoid or reduce smoking, alcohol, overeating. Tights and smoky environments in general are also harmful, nicotine can cause premature aging of the placenta and low birth weight. L'alcohol (certainly not a glass of wine with meals or a beer) can create fetal malformations. Medicines should be avoided as far as possible, but it is not true that you cannot take anything during the nine months of pregnancy, talk to your gynecologist. It is not true that dental treatments cannot be performed, it is sufficient that an anesthesia without adrenaline and particular antibiotics is used.

Read also: Symptoms of pregnancy in the first week

Nel first quarter nausea, vomiting and digestive difficulties are frequent (these also during the rest of pregnancy); control them, if not severe or particularly intense, with small and frequent light meals and simple medical aids. In the first trimester and throughout pregnancy, you will be advised to take folic acid to avoid malformations such as spina bifida in the fetus.

Exams

After the pregnancy test, the first test that is usually done is the dosage of beta HCG. Between the tenth and the fourteenth week, the nuchal translucency test can be done to evaluate the percentage of probability of any malformations of the fetus. In the first three months, the first ultrasound is done which allows you to see the baby's heart beating. In this article you will find all the other exams to be performed in the first trimester.

What to eat when pregnant

An example of a diet for the first quarter, recommended by our dietician:
  • Breakfast: cup of semi-skimmed milk, rusks and apricots
  • Snack: low-fat yogurt with cereals
  • Lunch: pasta with tomato and basil and some cheese and mixed vegetables
  • Snack: strawberries with a scoop of fiordilatte ice cream
  • Dinner: omelette without oil with asparagus and bread

The three trimesters of pregnancy

  • Second quarter
  • Third quarter

Questions and answers

When does the first trimester of pregnancy end?

The first trimester of pregnancy ends at the end of the third month of gestation, at 12th week and 6 days

What visits to do in the first trimester?

The first visit is important because the gynecologist will evaluate, through an ultrasound, the presence of the fetal heartbeat, the number of gestational chambers, the correct start of the pregnancy. In addition, at the end of the first trimester the nuchal translucency test can be done.

What are the most frequent complaints in the first trimester?

Morning sickness is one of the most common pregnancy symptoms in the first months of pregnancy and is caused by the exponential increase in Beta Hcg hormones. But breast tenderness, pain in the lower abdomen, drowsiness are also common.

What to watch out for in the first trimester?

The first three months of pregnancy are particularly delicate and in these weeks the risk of spontaneous abortion is higher. So you should avoid doing strenuous or high-impact sports, just as it is important to take the right amount of vitamins and folic acid right away, which is essential to prevent neural tube malformations in the fetus.

Is it possible to do sports in the first three months?

In the first three months you can continue to play sports, but avoiding all those excessively tiring, which can cause trauma or contrasts. Therefore yoga, walking, swimming are perfect. In any case, the gynecologist will recommend what can be done and what should be avoided after the first visit and the first ultrasound.

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