In the seventh week of pregnancy, the woman may already begin to notice weight gain, in addition to other characteristic symptoms.
The embryo continues to develop very rapidly and takes the shape of the future baby. It may already start to move at this time, although the mother will not notice it yet.
During this week, it is advisable for the woman to consider a visit to her gynecologist for the first ultrasound
Provided below is an index with the 8 points we are going to expand on in this article.
The embryo at 7 weeks
At 7 weeks of pregnancy, the embryo has a gestational age of 5 weeks, since gestation is counted from the day of the last menstrual period, that is, 2 weeks before the conception of the embryo.
The size of the embryo is approximately 1 cm in week 7 of pregnancy and continues with organogenesis, i.e. the development of all its organs and body systems.
The changes that the embryo undergoes during the seventh week are discussed below:
- The brain already has both hemispheres and neurogenesis takes place. At this time, about one billion neurons are produced.
- Facial features become more and more evident: the eyes have color, eyelids appear, the nose begins to show with the nostrils, the hollow corresponding to the mouth appears at the beginning of the digestive tract, etc.
- The heart has two chambers and beats at a more regular rhythm.
- The liver, pancreas and bronchi form and begin to function. The liver is responsible for making blood cells because the bone marrow has not yet formed.
- The skin is very thin, almost transparent.
- Arms and hands are intuited, but fingers have not yet appeared. The bumps on the legs begin to grow.
- The embryonic digestive tract is formed, which unites with the umbilical cord.
- The skeleton takes shape and the tissue that will form the future vertebrae appears.
Because of all these major changes, these weeks are critical for the proper development of the embryo. Exposure to teratogenic agents could cause congenital malformations in the future baby.
The placenta continues its formation process in order to serve as a nutritional supply in the near future. It will also be responsible for removing waste products from the fetus during the remainder of the pregnancy.
The umbilical cord, which joins the embryo to the placenta, increases in size and widens during this week to improve the connection.
Symptoms in the mother
There are no major changes from last week. It is likely that some symptoms will begin to improve or disappear, but it is usual to continue with the same symptoms of the previous weeks.
We will now discuss the typical symptoms of pregnancy during the first trimester:
- Nausea, with or without vomiting.
- Sudden mood changes.
- Burning appears as a consequence of the pressure of the uterus on the stomach.
- Slight weight gain.
- Constipation, as intestinal transit slows down.
- Headache and fatigue.
- Frequent urination due to pressure on the bladder.
Most of this discomfort usually lasts for the first few months. After the fourth month, pregnancy symptoms disappear, except for those related to belly enlargement.
The elevated level of the hormone progesterone during pregnancy makes women feel more sensitive and emotional.
Finally, an important change in the expectant mother's body is the formation of the mucus plug, which is responsible for sealing the uterus to protect the fetus and prevent infections.
When the woman goes to the first gynecological visit after discovering the pregnancy, a medical record is opened to start with the follow-up of the pregnancy during the next 9 months.
The first measures to be monitored during pregnancy are taken: weight and blood pressure. It is advisable not to gain more than 1 to 1.5 kg per month during the entire pregnancy.
Urine analysis and blood tests are also scheduled to see if all parameters are within normal range and to check for antibodies to viruses such as hepatitis, toxoplasmosis and rubella.
Typically, women who have an early ultrasound in week 7 of pregnancy are those who are coming from in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment, those who have had previous miscarriages or those who have had vaginal bleeding in the last few days.
For a normal pregnancy, the first trimester ultrasound is performed a few weeks later. However, in this seventh week of pregnancy it is already possible to see the embryo by ultrasound and hear its heartbeat.
Assisted procreation, as any other medical treatment, requires that you rely on the professionalism of the doctors and staff of the clinic you choose. Obviously, each clinic is different. Get now your Fertility Report, which will select several clinics for you out of the pool of clinics that meet our strict quality criteria. Moreover, it will offer you a comparison between the fees and conditions each clinic offers in order for you to make a well informed choice.
Recommendations in week 7
In week 7 of pregnancy, it is important for a woman to start paying special attention to taking care of her body if she has not already done so.
Living a healthy lifestyle will not only help maintain a healthy pregnancy, but is also essential to combat unwanted symptoms such as nausea.
Here are some recommendations to keep in mind during this seventh week of pregnancy:
First of all, it is advisable to eat every meal, even snacking between meals if the woman is very nauseous. In this way, the stomach will not be empty and it will be easier to fight them.
Foods high in protein are best suited for nausea. On the other hand, ginger is a natural plant that helps relieve nausea, either in infusion or in candies.
It is very important to drink plenty of water throughout your pregnancy. Hydration will prevent stretch marks and reduce constipation. However, do not overdo it by drinking water either, as this can make nausea worse and will increase the urge to urinate.
As we have said, week 7 of pregnancy is very important for the correct evolution of the baby. Therefore, it is very important that the woman has a healthy and nutritious diet that favors the whole organogenesis. To this end, we will highlight some nutrients that are essential in the diet:
- Folic acid
- as a dietary supplement, in addition to being found in green leafy vegetables and legumes. It is an essential vitamin to avoid the risk of fetal malformations.
- in green leafy vegetables and lean meats, as well as tomatoes and oranges that improve its absorption. Since the baby has an increased demand for blood, it is important to take iron to prevent anemia.
- take with skimmed or semi-skimmed milk and yogurts. Also with semi-cured cheese. Calcium is very important for the development of the baby's nervous and muscular systems.
- fruits, vegetables and cereals should be consumed daily to avoid constipation.
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- in fish. Omega-3 has multiple benefits during pregnancy.
On the other hand, it is important to highlight the foods that should be avoided during pregnancy to prevent toxoplasmosis or listerosis: undercooked or raw meats and fish, unpasteurized milk and cheeses, sausages, pâtés, etc. It is also very important to wash fruits and vegetables properly before eating them.
A pregnant woman should not abandon physical exercise completely. Practicing a moderate-intensity sport will help you cope better with pregnancy, reduce back pain, prevent stretch marks, etc.
In addition, sport greatly helps to maintain muscle tone, strength, and endurance, which will make the woman's labor more bearable.
The most suitable sports, both for an athletic woman and for those who do not like to practice sports, are the following: pilates, yoga and swimming. Another option would be to take long daily walks. Walking is very good for circulation and also helps you rest and sleep at night.
What to avoid?
In addition to the foods that are harmful to pregnant women that we have already mentioned, there are other substances that should be eliminated from our daily lives:
- nicotine influences oxygen transport to the fetus and could cause bronchial diseases in the newborn.
- is a toxic substance that could affect the physical and mental development of the baby. One of the malformations that appear in the fetuses of mothers who drink is the so-called fetal alcohol syndrome.
- can cause anemia and increase the risk of miscarriage.
It is best to stop these unhealthy habits before becoming pregnant when a woman is looking to become pregnant. In this way, it will be more bearable than doing it all at once and, in addition, there will be less risk of having affected the baby.
FAQs from users
Is it normal not to hear a heartbeat in week 7 of pregnancy?
The fetal heartbeat should appear between 5 and 6 weeks of pregnancy, so at 7 weeks it should be possible to detect the fetal heartbeat without problems by Doppler ultrasound.
There is a circumstance that could explain a delay in the detection of the heartbeat. This would occur when the actual time of pregnancy is less than that calculated on the basis of the last menstrual period. Ovulation is normally calculated to occur mid-cycle in women with regular cycles between 25 and 35 days. However, especially in women with irregular cycles, ovulation may be delayed, so that pregnancy would occur later than calculated. Therefore, if we do an ultrasound at 7 weeks of pregnancy and we observe an embryo of smaller size and without a heartbeat, the most prudent thing to do would be to wait a while and repeat the ultrasound to evaluate if the embryo has grown and has developed a heartbeat.
Another situation to take into account would be the case of women with obesity in which the visualization of the embryo can be more difficult due to the interposition of fat. In these women it is sometimes necessary to wait until the size of the embryo is somewhat larger to be able to detect the fetal heartbeat clearly.
However, if we are visualizing a 7-week embryo, with a corresponding size (about 8mm) and it does not have a fetal heartbeat, it is most likely that we are dealing with a miscarriage.
I have had an ultrasound in week 7 of pregnancy and nothing is visible, is there anything wrong?
In the seventh week of pregnancy, the embryo should already be seen inside the gestational sac and, in addition, it is very likely that the embryo's heartbeat can also be heard. If this is not possible, the gynecologist may suspect that an anembryonic pregnancy has occurred, in which the gestational sac is seen but the embryo is not inside because it has stopped its development too early.
How many months is 7 weeks of pregnancy?
Week 7 of pregnancy corresponds to the second month of gestation. As for the gestational age of the embryo, it is still 5 weeks old and there will be another 33 weeks to go before birth.
What if I have vaginal candidiasis in week 7 of pregnancy?
It is very common for pregnant women to develop a vaginal infection due to increased estrogen. In principle, fungi are not usually transmitted to the fetus. However, it is important for the woman to see a doctor so that the appropriate treatment can be applied. A heavy vaginal discharge could be a symptom of candidiasis.
You will soon be 8 weeks pregnant. If you want to know all the information about pregnancy during this stage, we recommend you to visit the following post: The eighth week of pregnancy.
It is possible that in this week 7 you have discovered that you have a twin pregnancy when doing the ultrasound scan. If so, you can find all the information about twin pregnancy in the following post: Multiple pregnancy.
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FAQs from users: 'Is it normal not to hear a heartbeat in week 7 of pregnancy?', 'I have had an ultrasound in week 7 of pregnancy and nothing is visible, is there anything wrong?', 'How many months is 7 weeks of pregnancy?' and 'What if I have vaginal candidiasis in week 7 of pregnancy?'.
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