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: Constipation during pregnancy?

Why do I have such bad constipation and what can I do about it? Are there any medications or natural remedies I can take while pregnant?

Re: Why do I have such bad constipation and what can I do about it? Are there any medications or natural remedies I can take while pregnant?

The Bump Expert

Constipation during pregnancy

During pregnancy, elevated progesterone levels cause smooth muscle to relax, which slows the passage of food through your intestines. This increases water absorption from the bowel and results in constipation. Your rapidly growing uterus, which compresses your intestines and pushes displaces your stomach upward, also contributes to the problem. Although for the most part constipation is mere nuisance, in some cases it does lead to serious medical problems such as hemorrhoids, rectal bleeding and rectal fissures.

First steps in treating constipation

The first step in treating constipation is making sure that you are drinking lots of water (at least 8 glasses a day), consuming enough fiber (as in fruits and vegetables), and getting ample activity (try walking 20-30 minutes daily. If the constipation persists, Metamucil or a mild stool softener such as Colace can help. If you are taking iron supplements, these may be contributing to  your constipation -- talk with your doctor about possible alternatives. In general, mineral oils, oral laxatives, enemas and rectal suppositories should be taken only after discussion with your physician, because they may stimulate labor.

watch: more on constipation during pregnancy

Dr. Ashley Roman

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

So, I am NOT a doctor but one thing that has really helped ease constipation for me has been probiotics. I purchased some at GNC a while back when I was on antibiotics to avoid a yeast infection and discovered a secondary gain of regularity! I have continued to take one one every night. I feel like it makes a big difference! I asked my Dr. and she said she was not familiar with them or research regarding using them during pregnancy so I guess I am using at my own risk. I did look into it and some articles said there was no harm and some actually said increasing your probiotic intake is beneficial in many ways. I can only speak to my own experience... but I would definitely recommend giving them a try. Right now I am taking a pill with 75 billion micro organisms- works like a miracle!

gingrica1 |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

Prune juice has helped me a lot! Not the most satisfying of beverage, but it gets things moving. It also helped eliminate some gas that was causing a lot of pain.

rachem1 |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

Kashi Shredded Wheat Cereal is the only saving grace for me, I took a stool softener but it did nothing, lettuce did nothing either. The shredded wheat is the bringer of poop!

Jamie Summers |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

When I was in the hospital post surgery (fibroids) they gave me Colace and the nutritionist gave me warm prune and apple juice mixed. It helped me get past the taste of the prune. Worked for me then.... and its working for me now that baby is on the way.

kmrambert |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

I've found that Odwalla Smoothies have helped. They settle my stomach in the mornings and the high fiber content keeps things moving along. Good luck!

jenbrian06 |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

Cold Apple cider is working for me right now. Great fall treat and just one 8 oz glass a day has decreased gas and gotten the flow going. Unfiltered apple juice has the same effect without as much sugar ;)

cleatsosu |


When I was pregnant with my first baby my doctor recommended Miralax and it was a miracle worker! Now that my 9 month old son has bouts of constipation his pediatrician recommended Miralax in is bottle. It's super gentle on your tummy.

cangrick317 |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

During my pregancy I was having trouble and my friend who has two kids suggested to take Metamucil, the orange sugar-free can do it more than once a day is needed but start with one it really helps! Also when you mix the powder with water drink it fast or it will turn into a applesauce consistency yuck! The taste is good! also if there is additional trouble try Colace as well with the helps!!

VirginiaZ |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

I agree with the comment above about taking a PROBIOTIC! I take Melaleuca's Florify. It is $13 for a month a day. One pill is like eating 10 cups of yogurt. I take it at night before bed and it helps with digestion..sleep much better as well.

cfloda |

Q&A: Constipation during pregnancy?

Apple juice works wonders! :)

lillobster |


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