Your Guide to Being 4 Weeks Pregnant:
How your baby is growing
The stem cells which make up the embryo start to form into specific cells to create your baby’s organs and tissues. Cells at the top begin to form your baby’s nervous system, brain and spinal cord (called the neural tube). Cells in the middle start to create the heart and circulatory system. And at the bottom grows your baby’s intestines, lungs and urinary tract. Around your baby, a double-layered fluid-filled bag – called an amniotic sac – is forming.
The umbilical cord is starting to sprout, and a basic placenta is forming. Until it matures, your baby will be fed by a yolk sac.
What’s happening to you
Your body has been flooded with hormones. Each does a specific job, from telling your body to stop shedding the womb lining for your next period to forming a mucus plug in your cervix. And one side-effect of them is to make you more emotional, so prepare for some highs and lows in the first trimester.
Need to wee more often. This happens when your womb stretches to accommodate the new arrival and presses onto your bladder. Make sure you completely empty your bladder by leaning forward when you wee. And don’t drink too much in the evening if you want to avoid waking in the night.
When to check it out:
If there’s pain when you wee. It may be a urinary tract infection which needs treatment.
‘To do’ this week
Take a home pregnancy test. Once your fertilised egg implants in your womb your body starts releasing human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), and this is the hormone picked up on pregnancy tests. Levels increase rapidly after implantation and should register on home tests by the first day of your missed period. Your doctor can do a blood test for HCG, which is more sensitive than a home test, but it’s only necessary if there’s a problem such as bleeding or pain. The accuracy of home tests (around 97 per cent) means they’re the easiest way to confirm your pregnancy.