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10 Weeks Pregnant: Your Baby's Development

You might be surprised to know that the foetal heartbeat is much faster than yours. The heart is now fully formed and beats a whopping 180 times per minute − about two to three times as fast as your heart does!

Although you won’t be feeling any movement yet, if you were to have an ultrasound scan at 10 weeks pregnant, you’d be able to see the foetus making tiny, jerky movements. Be patient, you’ll start feeling these sensations in just a few months’ time.

There’s more! Your little one is gaining more and more of the features of a human face. The ears are starting to protrude, an upper lip is now in place, there are two nostrils and the jawbones are forming. The eyelids, which started growing over the past couple of weeks, half cover the eyes this week. On the inside, the ear canal is developing, and the tooth buds, which will become your baby’s milk teeth are in place.

How Big Is Your Baby at 10 Weeks?

Now that you’re 10 weeks pregnant, your foetus is about the size of a strawberry, measuring about 30 mm, from crown to rump.

Embryo development at 10 weeks pregnant

Mum's Body at 10 Weeks Pregnant

You’re nearing the end of the first trimester, and the health of you and your little one are paramount.

Aim to have your first antenatal appointment with your midwife by week 12. If you don’t have one of these ‘booking appointments’ set up yet or you’re not sure how to find a midwife, ask your GP or use NHS service search.

Here are some of the things you can expect to happen at the booking appointment:

  • Medical examination. You’ll likely have a thorough examination including a check of your blood pressure, height and weight.
  • Blood and urine tests. A blood test will be taken to check for things like HIV, syphilis, hepatitis B, anaemia and rubella, and to check your blood type. You’ll also be offered a blood test for the blood disorders sickle cell and thalassaemia, and for Down’s syndrome. You might also have a urine test, which tests for things like whether there’s protein in your urine.
  • You and your family’s medical history. You’ll be asked if you have any chronic or genetic conditions, and asked about your family’s medical history, too. For example, whether there has been a baby born with an abnormality or if there’s a history of inheritable conditions such as cystic fibrosis in your family.
  • Immunisations. If your immunisations are not up to date, you’ll be offered any of the missing shots. During pregnancy, you’re at a greater risk of infections like the flu and whooping cough, so these vaccinations help protect both you and the foetus.
  • Support and guidance. You might be asked about your living situation, your physical and mental health, your work environment, how much of a support network you have, and whether you already have children. This helps the midwife find ways to get you additional support, or suggest solutions to any problems that might crop up.
  • A chance to ask questions. No matter how big or small, take this time to ask the questions you have. You might be wanting recommendations about breastfeeding or birthing classes in your area. Or perhaps you’re wondering what benefits you have access to now that you’re pregnant. You could also ask for personalised advice on nutrition and exercise. Or guidance on how to do something like pelvic floor exercises. Write a list of your questions beforehand so that you don’t forget any. Your midwife is there to support you, take advantage of the booking appointment to discuss whatever is on your mind.
  • If you’re pregnant with number two, it’s worth asking about how this second pregnancy might be different. Mention any complications you had during your first pregnancy, for example if you had preeclampsia or gestational diabetes, or if your baby was born prematurely.
  • The rest of your antenatal care will be explained. If you haven’t already had your dating scan, you’ll be offered this ultrasound by the time you’re 14 weeks pregnant. At this scan you can find out your due date. You’ll be offered another ultrasound scan for between 18 to 20 weeks when foetal development will be checked. Altogether you’ll have about 10 appointments in addition to these 2 ultrasounds. It’s a good idea to ask to have the same carer for the duration of your pregnancy.
  • Looking ahead to labour and childbirth. Have a discussion about what options you have for where to give birth. It will depend on where you live and whether you have any pregnancy complications. The possibilities include giving birth at a hospital, birthing centre, or at home.

10 Weeks Pregnant: Your Symptoms

  • Feeling sick. You’re not alone if you’re 10 weeks pregnant and still suffering from morning sickness. You’ve probably figured out ways to cope that work for you, but if not try eating something bland before getting out of bed, and eating six small meals instead of three bigger ones.
  • All kinds of digestive symptoms. Bloating? Burping? Heartburn? Feeling gassy? There is a hormone called progesterone that might be behind these symptoms. It helps relax the uterine muscles so that your uterus can grow with your foetus, but it’s also relaxing the muscles of your digestive tract causing these pesky symptoms. If you’re 10 weeks pregnant with twins (though you may not know it yet), these symptoms may be more intense. You might find that not eating before bed and eating slowly might help. Some mums-to-be also find that spicy or rich foods can cause bloating, so if this sounds like you, steer clear of these foods.
  • Lower back pain and cramps. Around 10 weeks pregnant, you might experience cramps that feel like period pain or a stabbing pain that feels a little like a stitch. These pains could come and go or hang around all day. In early pregnancy you may also get a backache. Once again, hormonal changes are likely to blame. It should be nothing to worry about, but head to the doctor if you’re also experiencing bleeding or a burning sensation when you pee, or if you’re worried.
  • Exhaustion. You might feel like napping at every opportunity due to your extreme fatigue during pregnancy. Read our tips on how to get a good night’s sleep and hopefully you’ll get some much-needed rest.
  • Headaches. Some mums-to-be get lots of headaches during the first trimester. If you're experiencing this symptom at 10 weeks pregnant, try to drink lots of water, get plenty of sleep, and do a relaxation class like antenatal yoga. Contact your doctor if the headaches persists or they’re severe, or if you’d like advice on what painkiller is safe to take during pregnancy.
  • Mood swings. You have lots going on right now, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re on a rollercoaster of highs and lows at 10 weeks pregnant. You might feel anxious and stressed one minute, over the moon the next, and vulnerable and sad the one after that. Try to stay healthy by exercising, chat with your loved ones, and seek help from your doctor or midwife.
  • Vaginal discharge. Most mums-to-be have more vaginal discharge during pregnancy. Although it might mean you need to use a panty liner, the extra discharge is important because it helps prevent infections from reaching the uterus. If the discharge smells off or if it’s green or yellow, if it feels itchy around the vaginal area, or if it hurts to pee, then contact your doctor as these symptoms may require treatment.
  • Night sweats. Although not specific to being 10 weeks pregnant or even night-time for that matter, you might feel hotter during pregnancy and sweat more due to increased blood flow to the skin. Wear loose, natural fibres, and keep your room nice and cool at night. Keep in mind, if you’re sweating so much that you’re soaking your night clothes and bedding, or if you get night sweats regularly, speak to your doctor.

10 Weeks Pregnant: Things to Consider

  • Wondering what a 10-week pregnant belly looks like? Unfortunately, it’s impossible to give one answer as each mum-to-be is so unique. What we can say is that your uterus is now the size of a large orange, and you may have also gained a little weight by now. This means that although you may not be showing obviously yet, you may have a rounded belly or a little bump. Read our pregnancy weight gain advice and ask your midwife for help on how to stay on track with gaining the healthy amount of weight. If your jeans are a little hard to do up these days, it might be time to switch to some more stretchy pants, or even some maternity wear. Comfort is key from here on out.
  • Reduce your caffeine intake, if you haven’t already done so. Many doctors recommend having 200 mg a day at most. That’s the equivalent of about one mug of filter coffee and one can of cola. Keep in mind, there’s caffeine in tea and chocolate, too!

10 Weeks Pregnant: Ask Your Doctor

  • When will you be able to hear a foetal heartbeat?
  • Is your pregnancy high risk for any reason, and what will be done to try to reduce the risks?
  • Are any genetic screening tests recommended? If so, when would these take place? Keep in mind: Genetic testing is completely optional and you can talk to your doctor to understand what’s involved before deciding if it’s right for you based on any risk factors, your family’s history, and any other considerations like your personal preferences.

10 Weeks Pregnant: Your Checklist

When you have a minute, read our article on pregnancy warning signs you should not ignore. You shouldn’t worry unduly, but it helps to be informed so you know what signs to look out for.

Start thinking about where you would like to give birth, and do some research about the options in your area.

If your doctor has recommended you take vitamin D, check if you qualify for free vitamins under Healthy Start.

Get a professional bra fitting and buy comfortable underwear and well-fitting bras if needed.

Start to plan a second trimester holiday! The next few months could be a good time for a short, relaxing break. Before you book anything, chat with your midwife as they can give you tips for flying while pregnant and any destination-specific advice like whether you need vaccines or how to seek medical help when you’re away from home.

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10 Weeks Pregnant: Your Checklist

When you have a minute, read our article on pregnancy warning signs you should not ignore. You shouldn’t worry unduly, but it helps to be informed so you know what signs to look out for.

Start thinking about where you would like to give birth, and do some research about the options in your area.

If your doctor has recommended you take vitamin D, check if you qualify for free vitamins under Healthy Start.

Get a professional bra fitting and buy comfortable underwear and well-fitting bras if needed.

Start to plan a second trimester holiday! The next few months could be a good time for a short, relaxing break. Before you book anything, chat with your midwife as they can give you tips for flying while pregnant and any destination-specific advice like whether you need vaccines or how to seek medical help when you’re away from home.

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