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: What is the mucus plug?

What exactly is the mucus plug, and what does it mean if I see it?

Re: What exactly is the mucus plug, and what does it mean if I see it?

The Bump Expert

The mucus plug is just what it sounds like -- a thick plug of mucus that builds up at your cervix over the course of pregnancy and covers the opening of your uterus. It's there to prevent bacteria from entering your uterus. When your cervix starts to efface or dilate in preparation for labor, the "plug" is pushed out into your vagina, meaning you may see it plop on out into the toilet. Heard of the "show" or "bloody show" that comes as you move towards labor? This is part of it, along with some lovely mucusy discharge and maybe a little blood. Don't worry if you don't see your mucus plug, though -- not everyone notices it.

American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists. Your pregnancy and birth. 4th ed. Washington, DC: ACOG; 2005.

Paula Kashtan

Q&A: What is the mucus plug?

It doesn't always plop into the toilet. Mine came out over the course of two days on the toilet paper, without any "show" with it.

stephaniezens |

Q&A: What is the mucus plug?

Mine came out in the toilet and then the rest on toilet paper later that night and the next morning.

ibis0612 |


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