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Week 12 of Pregnancy

Written by Amina Hatia RM
Medically reviewed by Marley Hall BA RM Diphe
Outline illustration of pregnant women

Week 12 of pregnancy.

Congratulations – week 12 is a big week for you and your baby.  It’s not only the final week of your first trimester, by the end of this week your baby will be fully developed and ready for the next stage – growing and just growing.

It’s also the week where you are most likely to have had your dating or combined screening ultrasound scan, so if you haven’t met baby before, this is the first time you have seen baby.

It may also be the week when you have decided to share with your nearest and dearest that you are expecting – many parents-to-be wait for after the scan to announce their pregnancy news.

How big is my baby?

Your baby has grown again – no surprise there. This week your baby is the size of an apricot.  Measuring around 55mm from the top of their head to their bottom, your little apricot weighs around 18 grams.

What happens in week 12 of pregnancy?

By the end of this week all of your baby’s body parts and their vital organs are now fully developed and in place.  There is nothing more that needs to be developed – though baby is still very small and needs the next 6 months to grow, grow, grow before they are ready to meet you.

Around 12 weeks is when you’ll be having your routine ultrasound scan – don’t worry if it’s a week before or just after.   This scan – often referred to as your dating scan, is used to find out how many weeks pregnant you are by carrying out measurements on your baby and check your baby’s development.

As your baby and your uterus is still relatively small, you’ll be asked to make sure you attend the scan with a full bladder – so drink up before the scan and cross your legs in the waiting room as you need the pee in you to make sure the sonographer (the person carrying out the scan) can get a nice clear image.

Once the sonographer has carried out the measurements, they will show you the screen with your baby on it – hopefully posing nicely for you.  You’ll also be able to see and hear their heart beating too.

If you’ve requested to have screening for Down’s syndrome, the sonographer will also measure nuchal translucency (NT) – fluid at the back of your baby’s neck.  This is the first part of the screening test – after the scan you will need to see a midwife to carry out the next part which is a sample of blood from you that is sent off with the details of your scan and NT to determine your risk of having a baby with Down’s syndrome, Edward’s syndrome, or Patau Syndrome.

Your midwife will also discuss with you the results of your blood and urine test’s taken at your booking appointment.

Week 12 pregnancy symptoms

Pregnancy symptoms lessening or disappearing.

It’s not uncommon for pregnancy symptoms like nausea, vomiting, tiredness to start diminishing at around 12 weeks. Whilst it’s great if this is the case, it’s understandable if you are feeling worried too.

Try not to worry though – this change or disappearance of pregnancy symptoms is because now, at 12 weeks, your fully formed baby’s organs (well some of them) have begun to work for themselves, lessening the load on you.

Similarly, those pregnancy hormones such as hormone human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) have also settled down now and your body has adapted to the change, again reducing the symptoms you feel.

Finally, the placenta – that you have grown for your baby, is now fully functioning, and has now taken over the job of providing your baby with oxygen and nutrients, again reducing the load on you.

So if pregnancy symptoms have disappeared – embrace the moment and enjoy the changes.  If they haven’t, try not to worry – they may do a little more slowly over the next few weeks, or it may be that some stay with you throughout.

Not passing urine so often

In the early few weeks of pregnancy, one of the first symptoms you had may have been peeing more often.  At 12 weeks this changes, and you will find that running to the loo often isn’t an issue any longer. Your uterus which has now grown to the size of a large grapefruit, has now moved low down in your pelvis to a more central part of your tummy, which has reduced the pressure on your bladder.

Week 12 pregnancy tips

  • Sharing news with others – this is the week when most do, often in inventive and hugely personal ways.  But it’s not for everyone – if you don’t feel ready yet – then take your time, it’s your baby and your pregnancy and you only need to share when you feel ready
  • Maternity clothes – the next 6 months ahead are about growth – so if you haven’t already, you may want to start shopping for clothes that your bump can grow with and keep you feeling comfortable.
  • Start thinking about antenatal classes – it’s never too early and they can get booked up early.  We at Now Baby are the leading online antenatal class provider and run a range of classes to suit your needs.