Week 2

Maybe baby?

In week 2 of pregnancy you aren’t actually pregnant yet. This is because the slightly confusing way doctors determine how far along you are in your pregnancy involves counting the first day of your last period as the very beginning of gestation. So, at week 2, there’s no baby just yet – but your body is in full swing preparing your uterus in case this is the month that you conceive.

Maybe baby?

In week 2 of pregnancy you aren’t actually pregnant yet. This is because the slightly confusing way doctors determine how far along you are in your pregnancy involves counting the first day of your last period as the very beginning of gestation. So, at week 2, there’s no baby just yet – but your body is in full swing preparing your uterus in case this is the month that you conceive.

Changes in your body this week

As ovulation draws near, your ovaries are preparing to release an egg. Meanwhile, the hormone progesterone is thickening the endometrium (lining of the uterus) so it can nurture the embryo. What happens over the next two weeks will determine whether or not you become pregnant.

How does your baby develop?

Each month, immature eggs develop inside a number of follicles in your ovaries. A follicle looks like a fluid-filled cyst and maturation of the egg occurs in only one of them. This dominant follicle then suppresses the others, and it will be this egg (now known as the corpus luteum) which is then released to travel gently down the fallopian tube, ready to meet the incoming sperm.

The corpus luteum releases progesterone and oestrogen in its bid to become an embryo and there’s one more stage of development to complete though, before this structure becomes an embryo, it has to change into a zygote. This happens only once the sperm has entered the egg and the protein coating changes to prevent any more sperm from getting in.

This is actually the moment of conception and all of your baby’s characteristics are determined at this point. You will have to wait a few weeks to find out the sex of the baby, but he or she already exists in this tiny ball of cells. The zygote, made up of many cells as it splits and divides must now attach itself to the lining of the uterus in order for you to become recognisably pregnant.

Health concerns

Ideally, existing health concerns should be discussed with your GP prior to conception. This will help to ensure that you are cared for in the best way possible by the antenatal team. And don’t forget to invest in a high calibre prenatal vitamin supplement. These are specifically designed for women entering pregnancy and taking them means that you will easily achieve the recommended levels of vitamins and minerals, such as folic acid.

Are there any symptoms you should be looking out for?

If you have ‘conceived’, as you progress through your ‘two week wait’ towards the date that your period is due, it is possible that you may start to experience some early pregnancy symptoms. Most women don’t, but you can keep an eye out for feeling nauseous, being extra tired and hormonal or having a very thin vaginal discharge.

Safety first

At this stage you might want to start finding out about which foods you would have to cut from your diet if you are pregnant. There are some obvious no-nos such as blue cheese, shellfish and undercooked meat, but it’s also recommended that pregnant women avoid pre-packaged sandwiches, soft ice cream (Mr Whippy style) and some cured meats. See our first trimester nutrition page for more information.

Important issues this week

If you are hoping to get pregnant, take some time to make sure that everything in your day is as ordered as possible. Studies show that women who are less stressed tend to have higher chances of conceiving. Whilst it’s not an exact science, it’s always nice to feel a little more relaxed about life.

Keeping fit, staying healthy

Drink plenty of water and try to stay moderately active. If you have a FitBit or similar, aiming for 10,000 steps a day is ideal. If you can’t manage that, try small changes like swapping the lift for stairs and getting out for a walk at lunchtime. You don’t need to be increasing your fitness level, but strong, supple muscles will mean that your body is better placed to cope with the physical demands of carrying a baby and the challenge of labour.

Looking forward; planning ahead

The world is your oyster. Right now, you are on the threshold of an amazing change. Whether this is your first pregnancy or a subsequent one, you are about to take a huge step into a new way of life. There will be lots of things to focus on in the coming months, but for now, simply concentrate on keeping your body and mind healthy and prepared for whatever lies ahead.

Important – If you or your child are unwell you should seek medical advice from a professional – contact your GP or visit an A&E department in an emergency. While My BabyManual strives to provide dependable and trusted information on pregnancy and childcare 24/7 via our website pages, we cannot provide individual answers to specific healthcare questions.
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