You’re eight weeks pregnant and you’re probably still getting used to the idea.
Even if this isn’t your first baby, the idea of adding another little bean to the mix can be a lot to get your head around.
At 8 weeks, it’s really starting to feel real. You’re probably starting to feel pregnant now.
It’s also likely you’re finding it a little hard to keep your good news to yourself, if you haven’t already told people.
Read on for what to expect at 8 weeks pregnant.
How many months is 8 weeks pregnant?
Congratulations! You’ve reached pregnancy week 8 – or 2 months pregnant if you’re thinking in terms of months.
If you haven’t yet told people your secret, your symptoms might give the game away.
Frequent running to the loo, early nights, and afternoon naps can sometimes be hard to disguise.
When should you tell people you’re pregnant?
Maybe you haven’t shared your news with the masses yet. Perhaps you’ve told just a select few. Or maybe you’ve screamed it from the rooftops.
There is no ‘right time’ to tell. Share your news whenever you feel ready.
If you’re feeling pretty rotten, it’s nice to have someone you can confide in, to give you some extra support.
Seek expert advice from your doctor or healthcare provider, if you feel you need to take additional precautions at your place of work.
If you’re struggling with your symptoms, at home or at work, be sure to speak to someone about how you’re feeling.
You might like to read 4 Reasons Not To Wait Until 12 Weeks To Announce Pregnancy.
Week 8 pregnancy care
Now is a good time to start thinking about your options for birth. If you are a first-time parents-to-be, this is something you’ve never needed to consider before.
Choosing the right healthcare provider and birthplace, however, is very important.
Your choices should reflect the type of birth you want.
Spend time discussing this with your partner to make sure you’re on the same page. Share with each other your hopes and expectations for your baby’s birth.
You both might like to read How Do I Choose A Care Provider for more information.
It’s not uncommon at this stage for parents-to-be to realize how little they know about birth.
Ask yourselves plenty of questions. What’s most important to you? Do you have any concerns or fears about birth that need to be addressed?
Are you high risk and, if so, how will this affect your choices for your birth?
Do some research on the options available in your area.
Some popular options, such as birth centers and private midwives, have long waiting lists, so don’t leave it too late.
This will be one of the most important days of your life. Plan to have the best people there to support you.
See our article about your options when giving birth for more information.
First prenatal appointment | what to expect
At this early stage, you might be starting to think about your first prenatal appointment. Perhaps you have already booked an appointment.
Depending on your pregnancy care choices, it might be with your midwife, your general practitioner (GP), or your obstetric doctor (OB).
At your first visit, your health care provider will check your health and your baby’s health.
This might involve:
- A detailed health history
- Recording your height and weight
- Checking your blood pressure
- Taking a urine sample
- Discussion about prenatal testing
- Having your blood drawn for testing
- Questions about your mental health
- Hearing your baby’s heartbeat
- Offering you an ultrasound, for dating accuracy.
Symptoms at 8 weeks pregnant | what to expect
At 8 weeks pregnant your symptoms will most likely have kicked in by now. Early pregnancy symptoms, such as morning sickness and fatigue are normally at their peak around this stage.
Levels of pregnancy hormones are rising and you might have noticed a heightened sense of smell. This could mean certain foods are off the menu (or even at home) until your hormone levels settle.
Acne during pregnancy isn’t uncommon in your first trimester too. You might also notice patches of darker skin, especially on your upper lip and face.
Many of these symptoms are to be expected during your first trimester, but there could be a few you haven’t heard about before.
What are some unusual signs of early pregnancy?
You’re probably familiar with the more common early pregnancy symptoms, such as sore breasts, emotional swings, and food aversions.
But you might not have heard about some of the surprisingly odd ones.
Some pregnant women might have experienced some of these symptoms, but might not have realized they were connected to their pregnancy:
- Metallic taste in the mouth. Along with many pregnancy symptoms, a metallic taste in mouth during pregnancy is caused by a change in your pregnancy hormones, particularly estrogen
- Bleeding gums. Pregnancy hormones affect the mucus membranes inside your mouth and gums. This makes the gums more sensitive and more likely to bleed
- Nose bleeds. Increased blood flow and sensitive mucus membranes also increase your chances of nose bleeding in pregnancy
- Heart palpitations. Most women notice an increased heart rate during pregnancy, and some experience palpitations, due to the increase in blood volume
- Dizziness. Feeling dizzy in pregnancy is common, as your blood vessels dilate to accommodate your extra blood volume. This will naturally lower your blood pressure, but can leave you feeling a bit woozy
- Pregnancy hunger. Do you feel hungry all the time? Do you have weird pregnancy cravings? Keep healthy snacks to hand for when hunger strikes.
Many of these symptoms are perfectly normal, and more common than you might think.
If you have concerns, though, mention them at your next prenatal appointment, or speak to your healthcare provider.
Is it normal to be exhausted at 8 weeks pregnant?
At this point, you might feel like taking a nap under your desk most days. It’s quite common for women to feel very tired and fatigued in early pregnancy.
Being 8 weeks pregnant isn’t easy. Although from the outside, it might seem like not much is happening, you’re growing a tiny human being – and that takes a lot of energy.
Pregnancy fatigue is no joke. Most of us are not used to the feeling of having no energy, and it can be very frustrating at times. You might not feel able to manage even the most basic of chores or routines.
Don’t worry. This is very normal in early pregnancy, especially around about now.
Try to rest as much as you can. Go to bed early, learn to take naps, and listen to your body. Be kind to yourself.
Block out some ‘me’ time throughout the week. Make it a priority. Self-care is key.
Your body has some very important work to do over the next few weeks.
Your due date might feel a long way away. But trust me, soon you’ll be into the second trimester. You’ll have more energy and you can let that pregnancy glow shine through.
What should I be eating at 8 weeks pregnant?
Cravings can be a big feature throughout pregnancy. It might not be all about pickles and ice cream, but you could find you are keen on certain foods.
Listen to those pregnancy cravings. It’s your body’s way of telling you it needs something specific that’s lacking from your diet.
For example, if you’re craving red meat, maybe you’re a little low on iron. If you’re craving milk, your body might need some extra calcium.
Just remember, a healthy and balanced diet is the best option right now.
Everything you eat is a building block for your baby’s development.
And although you’re ‘eating for two’, that just refers to nutritional needs.
You only need about 300 extra calories per day (or 600 if you’re pregnant with twins) to nourish your growing baby – which isn’t actually very much.
Chocolate or potato crisps might be the easiest snack to go for, but try reaching for a healthier option.
Try to include iron rich foods for pregnancy and focus on lean protein. Avoid fast food and processed foods, as they’re high in unhealthy fats and empty calories.
Keep eating lots of fruits and veggies, which will provide plenty of nutrients for your baby’s growth.
Stay hydrated and drink lots of water.
Weight gain at 8 weeks pregnant
Try not to get too caught up with the numbers when it comes to weight gain.
Everyone will put on weight differently during pregnancy.
Some people will put on weight quickly during early pregnancy, while others will actually lose weight in the first trimester. Some will put on more weight in the second or third trimester.
Try not to compare yourself with others. Spend more time focusing on making healthy choices where you can, and less time stepping on the scales.
Read our article Pregnancy Weight Gain – How Much Weight Is Normal? to learn more about this topic.
Pregnancy sickness at 8 weeks
If you’re suffering from sickness or nausea, focusing on your diet can be a bit harder. Just do your best and try to make healthy choices whenever you can.
Over the next few weeks, you’ll possibly feel much better, and you’ll be able to concentrate more on your diet then.
If you’re struggling to keep fluids down, seek professional medical advice. You could be suffering with an extreme form of morning sickness, known as hyperemesis gravidarum.
8 weeks pregnant belly
In week 8 of pregnancy, you might notice your body is starting to change as your baby grows.
Your uterus is now about the size of a large orange. As the uterus expands it starts to take up more room in your pelvis. But it’s still below your belly button level.
Your clothes might be fitting a little more snugly around your waist as a result.
Your breasts have started to grow and your normal bra probably feels tight. This is due to the development of ducts and glands, which begins quite early in pregnancy.
You might consider purchasing a maternity bra to help you feel more comfortable.
Your baby at 8 weeks pregnant
8 weeks is the last week your little one will be referred to as an embryo. After this milestone, your baby is now classed as a fetus.
At 8 weeks pregnant, your baby is moving around, even though you can’t feel anything yet.
Your baby’s organs are developing and beginning to function, which makes this a crucial time for baby.
Your baby’s taste buds are also forming right now. Your healthy eating during pregnancy will help inform your child’s food preferences later.
Your baby’s heart is now beating more regularly, at about 150 beats per minute. That’s roughly twice your own heart rate.
Baby’s brain is forming neural pathways. The skin is still very thin. Elbows and knees are developing, and your baby’s fingers and toes are still slightly webbed.
Cartilage and bones are starting to form and soon the intestines will move into your baby’s abdomen.
Organs, muscles, and nerves begin to function at this stage, and your baby no longer has an embryonic tail.
Are you curious to know whether your baby is a boy or a girl?
Your baby’s internal sex organs develop between 7 and 12 weeks gestation.
The size of your baby at 8 weeks pregnant
At 8 weeks pregnant, your baby is now about 1.6 cm long (just over half an inch). He or she weighs about 1 gram and is about the size of a kidney bean.