Your baby is the size of an orange seed

5 Weeks Pregnant: Your Baby's Development

Some mums-to-be to realise they’re pregnant this week. If this is you: Congratulations! Wondering when you’ll meet your little one for the first time? Our Due Date Calculator will help you find out.

Even though you’re just five weeks pregnant, lots of changes are taking place inside with the growing embryo. The nervous system, brain and spinal cord are developing, and the heart starts to beat. The teeny-tiny face has the start of what will be the nose and eyes.

At five weeks, the embryo is growing some blood vessels, which connect to you. These are the beginnings of what will be the umbilical cord that eventually connects to the placenta. When you’re five weeks pregnant, the placenta is still growing but soon it will remove waste and deliver oxygen and nutrients to your baby via the umbilical cord.

The Size of the Embryo at 5 Weeks Pregnant

At five weeks, the embryo is still very small, but growing quickly! Picture a very small orange seed or a sesame seed. At this stage, your little one is around 2 millimetres long.

Take a look at this visual for an idea of all the things that are happening to make your uterus a comfortable home for your baby during your pregnancy.

Embryo at 5 weeks pregnant

Mum's Body at 5 Weeks Pregnant

If you’ve just found out you’re pregnant, you might feel ecstatic, worried or overwhelmed, or even a range of emotions. It’s normal to experience mood swings during pregnancy.

Speak to your loved ones or your GP about what’s on your mind. It may also help to find some ways to manage your feelings. Perhaps, go for a relaxing walk or block out some ‘me time’ each week when you unwind by doing something that makes you feel happy.

At five weeks pregnant, you might still be symptom-free – other than missing your period. It’s normal to look and feel much the same as you did before you were pregnant. Some pregnancy symptoms may be so mild that you barely notice them.

Be sure to talk to your doctor if you have questions, or if the lack of any early signs of pregnancy has you feeling uneasy.


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5 Weeks Pregnant: Your Symptoms

Although every mum-to-be is unique, and some experience only mild or no symptoms at all at this time, these are some of the symptoms you may be experiencing at five weeks pregnant:

  • Bloating. At five weeks pregnant your belly may be looking and feeling a little bloated. Pregnancy hormones are probably responsible, and this symptom may be accompanied by burping and passing wind, too.

  • Morning sickness. Some mums-to-be start to experience morning sickness at five weeks pregnant, while for others it starts a little later. Some mums-to-be never get it at all. This unpleasant, nauseous feeling can strike morning, noon or night – or hang around all day long. Some mums-to-be also throw up. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, eat something bland – like toast – before getting out of bed, eat low-fat foods if greasy foods trigger your bouts of nausea, and avoid smells that make you feel ill. It may also help to eat small meals frequently throughout the day.

  • Breast tenderness. At five weeks pregnant, your breasts may feel sore or tingly. The veins on your breasts may also become darker and more visible.

  • Frequent urination. Do you need to pee more often, even in the middle of the night? It's no surprise as this is a common early symptom of pregnancy. Drink plenty of water during the day and have a plan for where the nearest toilet is, but consider reducing how much water you drink just before you go to sleep so you have fewer night-time toilet visits.

  • Fatigue. Your raging hormones and changing moods can leave you feeling completely wiped out. Take good care of yourself by eating healthily and doing some gentle exercise, plus don't feel guilty about resting when you need it.

5 Weeks Pregnant: Things to Consider

  • Take 400 micrograms of folic acid every day until you are 12 weeks pregnant to support your baby's healthy growth and development and reduce the risk of neural tube defects. If you're not already taking a folic acid supplement chat to your doctor or midwife.

  • Give some thought to what you're eating. You need to avoid eating certain foods during pregnancy. For example, some types of fish like shark, swordfish, and mackerel; uncooked meat or eggs; and unpasteurised cheeses.

  • Need some inspiration on how to make the big reveal to your partner? Discover these exciting ways to tell your partner you're pregnant.

  • Think about whether to share the news that you're five weeks along with your friends and family. Some people prefer to wait until the end of the first trimester after they've had their first ultrasound scan, others tell a select few the moment they've got a positive home pregnancy test in hand. You might want to discuss this topic with your midwife, but ultimately the choice is yours!

  • If you have a cat, now is the time to get someone else to take care of the litter box or wear gloves when you empty the litter tray each day. This will help you avoid toxoplasmosis, an infection that can harm unborn babies. The symptoms of toxoplasmosis include fever, aching muscles, a sore throat and swollen glands. Visit your doctor if you notice any of these.

  • Start a journal. It’s normal to feel a range of different emotions as you adjust to the idea that you are pregnant. Whether it’s something you’ve been hoping for for a long time, or come as a bit of a surprise, your feelings about it may be different to what you had expected. And, they may even change from one day to the next! Writing in a journal is one way to get your inner-most thoughts and feelings out of your system and journaling can help you navigate the emotional highs and lows of early pregnancy.

  • Although you won’t be showing just yet, you may want to start a week-by-week or month-by-month baby bump photoshoot. You can either save the photos as a private keepsake or share the images on social media (once you’re ready to share news of your pregnancy, of course). In the years to come, you’ll love to look back on how your bump grew during your pregnancy, and your little one will also love to see his first “home.”

5 Weeks Pregnant: Ask Your Doctor

  • How far along are you in your pregnancy?

  • Is your pregnancy high risk for any reason like your age or medical history, and are there any precautions that need to be taken in response?

  • What scans, tests and antenatal appointments can you expect in the coming months?

  • Should you be concerned if you notice spots of blood on your panties at this stage of pregnancy? What does implantation bleeding look like?

  • Are there any lifestyle changes that need to happen now that you know you’re pregnant?

  • How do you do pelvic floor exercises?

5 Weeks Pregnant: Your Checklist

  • Schedule an appointment with your doctor so that you can get started with your antenatal care.

  • Find out who to call if your doctor is unavailable or if it’s after hours and you have a medical concern.

  • Save your doctor’s number to your phone and have emergency contact numbers stuck on your fridge and saved to your contact list, too.

  • Cut out smoking and alcohol, if you haven't already.

  • To help you feel more prepared for what’s ahead, do some early reading about maternity leave and think about when you will tell your employer about your pregnancy.

  • Sign up for even more weekly pregnancy tips:

How we wrote this article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the National Health Service (NHS). The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.