Around the 14th week of pregnancy, you may notice your clothes aren't fitting very well. You still may not "show" a lot, but it's important to wear clothes that you feel comfortable in. Pregnant women have a lot of clothing choices these days, so you should be able to find clothes that are comfortable and will allow you to grow bigger.
Hair and Nails
Pregnancy hormones circulating through your body often trigger changes in your hair. You may notice less hair loss than usual. Unfortunately, after your baby is born, the hair you have retained during pregnancy is lost. Don't worry if it happens to youâ€”you're not going bald!
The same hormones that stimulate hair growth also temporarily influence your nails. You may find that you have problems keeping your nails filed to a practical length during pregnancy. Enjoy them while you're pregnant!
Some women notice they have more facial hair during pregnancy. Usually it's not a problem, but check with your healthcare provider if it worries you. Facial hair will probably disappear or decrease after pregnancy, so wait before making any decisions about permanent hair removal.
During pregnancy, your metabolism increases;your body uses more energy when you're pregnant. You may feel overheated or hot.
Pregnancy hormones elevate your body temperature, which may lead to greater perspiration. Use absorbent talc to help keep you dry because excess moisture can result in a heat rash. Don't get overheated. Wear layers of clothing, and peel them off if you have to. If you perspire heavily, keep up your fluid intake to avoid dehydration.
A Different Bulge (Not the Baby)
When you lie down and look at your stomach, you may notice a bulge you didn't have before (not the baby). Abdominal muscles are stretched and pushed apart as your baby grows. Muscles that are attached to the lower portion of your ribs may separate in the midline. Called a diastasis recti, it isn't painful, and it does not harm the baby.
This condition may still be present after the birth of your baby, but the separation won't be as noticeable. Exercising can strengthen the muscles, but a small bulge or gap may remain.
Measuring Your Abdomen
As you progress in your pregnancy, your doctor needs a point of reference to measure how much your uterus is growing. Your abdomen will probably be measured at each office visit during your pregnancy. Some doctors measure from the bellybutton to the top of the uterus. Others measure from the pubis symphysis, the place where pubic bones meet in the middle-lower part of your abdomen, to the top of the uterus.
These measurements reveal a great deal. If at 20 weeks, you measure 11.2 inches (28cm), your doctor may be alerted to the possibility of twins or an incorrect due date. If you measure 6 inches (15cm) at this point, your due date may be wrong or there may be a concern about intrauterine-growth retardation or some other problem. If there is a question, your doctor will have you evaluated further by ultrasound.
When "Lightening" Occurs
Often a few weeks before labor begins or at the beginning of labor, your baby's head begins to enter the birth canal, and your uterus seems to "drop" a bit. This is called lightening. It's normal.
One benefit of lightening is an increase in space in your upper abdomen, which gives you more room to breathe. However, as your baby descends, you may notice more pressure in your pelvis, bladder and rectum, which may make you uncomfortable.
Center of Gravity Changes
When your uterus grows, it grows out in front of you, so your center of gravity moves forward over your legs. Your joints are looser, and it may feel as if they are slipping. Your posture may suffer, which may cause backaches.