Pregnancy Week by Week

Get a window on what’s happening in your pregnancy, week by week. From week four to week 42, your baby is experiencing a miraculous transformation from a clump of cells to a fully formed (and totally cute) newborn. Just imagine, as early as five weeks, your baby is already starting to form major organs (heart, stomach, liver, and kidneys) and systems (digestive, circulatory, nervous). By eight weeks, your raspberry-sized womb-mate is moving her arms and legs. At the beginning of your second trimester (week 14), your wee one is sucking his thumb. By week 28, the first week of the third trimester, baby (now as big as an eggplant) is prepping for breathing, developing his eyesight and packing on pounds in anticipation of life outside the womb. Each week is a new miracle. Less miraculous is how a mom-to-be may feel. Pregnancy Week-by-Week charts your baby’s development but also lets mom know what she might be feeling during each week of her pregnancy. Pregnancy week by Week includes everything mom needs to know to feel a sense of control over her pregnancy. Each week offers a complete guide to what you might feel, your must-do’s, your nice-to do’s, and answers and advice on everything pregnancy-related. Plus each week’s guide offers tips on maintaining a healthy and comfortable pregnancy from strategies on coping with pregnancy symptoms (morning sickness anyone?) to ideas for healthy eating, and pointers on talking to your OB. Let us guide you along your pregnancy, week by week.

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Q&A: Discharge during pregnancy?

I'm having so much discharge all of a sudden. Is this normal?

Re: I'm having so much discharge all of a sudden. Is this normal?

The Bump Expert

You've probably seen this normal, odorless or mild smelling, whitish discharge before... there's just more of it now that you're pregnant. This discharge, called leukorrhea, is made up of secretions from the cervix and vagina, and becomes heavier during pregnancy thanks to an increase in estrogen production and greater blood flow to the vagina.

You'll notice another increase in discharge as you approach delivery. As your cervix thins and dilates it will expel the mucus plug, leaving behind a thicker discharge. If you see an increase in discharge or change in consistency before week 37 or a pink or brownish tint at any point during pregnancy, call your doctor immediately -- this could be a sign of preterm labor. Also inform your doctor if your discharge is accompanied by itching or burning, because this might be a sign of infection.

The best way to deal with discharge is by keeping the area dry and clean. Wear cotton underwear and steer clear of tight clothing, scented pads, douches, or any other feminine hygiene sprays or products. There's really no way to reduce discharge... but you wouldn’t want to, anyway. It's your body’s natural way of expelling bacteria that could harm both you and baby.

watch: more on discharge during pregnancy

Paula Kashtan

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