Pregnancy Symptoms at 12 Weeks

A pregnant woman should take utmost care during the first trimester or first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Loss of pregnancy symptoms at 12 weeks indicates a miscarriage. Read ahead, to know the significance of pregnancy symptoms, especially during the first trimester...
Women who are trying to get pregnant, desperately watch out for pregnancy symptoms. After missing the period, a woman usually notices certain pregnancy symptoms within a week or two. Pregnancy is divided into three trimesters and early symptoms like 'nausea' are prominent during the first trimester. Positive home pregnancy test, examination by the doctor and a blood test help confirm the pregnancy. Hormonal changes in the body and growing uterus with fetus, exhibit several symptoms. Take a look at the pregnancy symptoms at 12 weeks.

Pregnancy Symptoms at 12 Weeks

Missed Period: Missed period is one of the sure-shot signs of pregnancy. Those who have irregular menstrual cycles may not be able to notice this symptom as the earliest symptom of pregnancy.

Implantation Bleeding: Some women experience spotting when the embryo attaches itself to the wall of the uterus. Spotting is sometimes followed by cramps, but all pregnant women do not experience implantation spotting.

Frequent Urination: The growing fetus and uterus exert pressure on the urinary bladder, leading to frequent urination.

Darken Areolas: A 12 weeks pregnant woman can easily notice the change in the color of areolas. The pink areolas turn dark brown and their size increases. Nipples become tender and the tiny bumps on the breast (Montgomery's tubercles) become more pronounced. The nipples start sticking out more.

Increased Breast Tenderness: The breasts begin to increase in size and stretch marks begin to appear. The breasts are tender to touch. The veins on the breasts are easily seen. Slight soreness in the breasts can also be experienced.

Morning Sickness: This is a typical pregnancy symptom that is experienced by almost all pregnant women, during the first trimester. Though the name is 'morning sickness', women may experience nausea throughout the day. Nausea leads to vomiting, which results in weakness and tiredness.

Food Craving and Aversion: A pregnant woman may suddenly start disliking some foods and smells. She may have strong cravings towards certain foods. It is possible that the foods which were her favorites may make her feel sick now! Some women crave for non-food items like ice, cigarette butts, chalks, soil, color chips, etc. Craving for ice-creams, chocolates or some fruits is very common.

Excessive Tiredness: Several hormonal changes take place in a pregnant woman's body. Energy is now also consumed for the growth of the fetus, placenta, uterus, excessive production of blood and blood vessels, etc. Morning sickness lowers the energy levels. All these factors contribute to excessive tiredness and fatigue during the first trimester.

Fetal Heart Rate: Pregnancy symptoms may vary from woman to woman. Some pregnant women may not exhibit symptoms like morning sickness, food cravings, etc. But fetal heart rate (FHT) shows a fixed pattern of change till 12th week of pregnancy. An ultrasound doppler helps measure FHT. The heart of the fetus starts beating at around 5th week. In the 5th week, the FHT and the heart rate of the mother are almost the same (80-85 beats per minute or bpm). Then, the FHT increases with an astonishing speed. It increases by about 3 beats per minute per day for one entire month! By the end of the 8th week the FHT can be around 172 bpm. From 9th week, it starts lowering down and stabilizes to about 150 bpm (average) in the 12th week. The range of normal fetal heart rate after 12th week is 120 -160 bpm.

Loss of Pregnancy Symptoms at 12 Weeks

Women who have a greater risk of miscarriage, women who have already had one or more miscarriages should indeed keep a watchful eye on the symptoms of pregnancy. Loss of pregnancy signs, especially absence of fetal heart beats is a sign of impending miscarriage. Placental or umbilical cord problems, chromosomal abnormalities, psychological or emotional stress, excessive physical exertion, an injury or trauma or any other health complications can lead to miscarriage. Chances of miscarriage after 12 weeks of pregnancy are lower when compared to chances before completing 12 weeks of pregnancy.

I hope you found the above information regarding pregnancy symptoms at 12 weeks helpful. Women should not panic at the loss of symptoms. They should visit a doctor immediately. Women with higher risk of miscarriage should follow the instructions of the doctor religiously.
By Leena Palande
Last Updated: 9/29/2011
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