When you are 12 weeks pregnant, your baby’s brain is entering an intensive development phase. Stay away from alcohol, drugs, and cigarettes. And eat healthy foods!
By the end of this week, the risk of miscarriage is down to below 2.5% and even less if a live embryo has been seen at an ultrasound scan.
To learn more about fetal development, how big your baby is, what month you are actually in, pregnancy symptoms, and what’s happening with your body, mom, read on.
What to Expect when 12 Weeks Pregnant
In this article:
How Many Months is 12 Weeks Pregnant?
You are approaching the final stage of your 1st trimester (lasting only one more week).
You are 2 months pregnant but in your third month – and you will soon complete it!
To learn the difference between how many months you are pregnant and what month you are in, read our post where we explain how to calculate pregnancy weeks and months.
Many women will breathe a sigh of relief at this point as the risk of miscarriage is significantly reduced. By pregnancy week 13, the average risk of miscarriage is down to below 2.5%, compared to 4.9% in week 9 and between 10% and 20% on average for the whole first trimester. You can learn more about miscarriage statistics week by week here.
Many choose to start announcing the big news. You are now almost 1/3 through your pregnancy. Weird.
Your Baby’s Development
How Big is My Baby at 12 Weeks?
The fetal age of your baby is now 10 weeks.
Your baby is now just over 2 inches long (5 cm) and weighs close to half an ounce (14 grams). That’s about the size of a lime.
Interestingly, at this time during pregnancy, most babies are of the same length. Later on, the length will start to vary due to genes. But right now, measuring the fetus’s length is an excellent way of estimating your due date.
What Does my Baby Look Like when 12 Weeks Pregnant?
At 12 weeks, your baby looks like a little human.
Eyes, ears, and nose are more or less in their correct places, which of course, is vital for a pretty baby-looking face. You can see the nose tip in the ultrasound image above. :-)
Although the baby is moving and kicking already, you won’t be able to feel it just yet. We know you are impatient, but just a little bit longer, and then you’ll finally feel these tiny movements.
Fetal Development in Pregnancy Week 12
This week, all your baby’s vital organs and body parts will be in place. What a huge milestone!
Another big milestone for your little one this week is the development of reflexes. Fingers will open and close; toes will curl, even facial expressions will change. Your baby can both scratch his nose and suck his thumb!
If you move a specific way, your baby will respond by moving as well, even if you can’t quite feel it yet. Muscles start responding to the stimulus development for a more natural movement for your baby.
The brain starts making hormones as well, and the nerve cells are developing rapidly. Actually, week 12 is the start of a critical development phase for your baby’s brain. Between week 12 and week 18 and later between week 24 and 36, brain development is particularly rapid and sensitive. Make sure you stay away completely from alcohol and nicotine.
The placenta is functioning effectively, and blood now flows from the umbilical cord.
Muscles within the intestines also begin to practice contractions known as peristalsis in order to digest food later on. Your baby’s intestines are moving back into the abdomen at this point. The kidneys start producing urine.
Although the sex organs are formed, it is still too early to say if you are having a boy or a girl.
Mom’s Body When 12 Weeks Pregnant
Your uterus is now about the size of a grapefruit.
Your baby bump might start showing a little bit. However, if you are not showing yet, don’t worry. That is perfectly normal, too, especially if this is your first pregnancy. Every woman’s body is different, and the belly sizes will also vary. Try not to compare yourself to other women, and don’t worry about whether your belly is too big or too small for 12 weeks. It is perfect just the way it is.
You may also find yourself looking a little more bloated now from water retention, and you may notice as much as 2 or 3 pounds more are showing up on your scale than before you got pregnant.
For many women, 12 weeks pregnant is a turning point, with anxiety levels subsiding due to the dramatic drop in miscarriage risk.
Some women may find several positives this week, including increasing energy, a change of libido, appetite change, and even less nausea than before.
If you are still experiencing your early pregnancy symptoms, don’t worry; you are not the only one.
Some women will experience the negative effects longer than others, while some women even feel them to some degree throughout their entire pregnancy. Which pregnancy signs are you experiencing? Vote in this poll and compare pregnancy signs with other moms.
Because of the hormone progesterone, which is causing your blood vessels to relax and widen, you might experience dizziness.
You might still feel bloated and experience gassiness because of the hormonal changes and your growing uterus.
Some skin changes occur for some women who may notice freckles or dark pigmentation in their faces. That may not always seem attractive to you, but it is perfectly normal and is nothing to worry about. Use sunscreen when outside to prevent this.
The skin around your nipples and your areolas will darken, and some women find that starting a moisturizing routine now will help later once your skin starts to stretch and grow with your baby.
Spotting might be nothing to worry about if it is light because your cervix is more sensitive during pregnancy. However, it is always best to contact your doctor when you notice bleeding, even when it is light, to make sure everything is ok. If you experience more than just light bleeding, especially if it is accompanied by cramping, contact your doctor immediately.
Things to Do and Buy This Week
A baby registry is fun! Amazon has one of the best, check it out here. Or take a look at my review of some other stores to set up your (free) baby registry!
The book What to Expect When You’re Expecting is a great read throughout your pregnancy.
Is your waist expanding? Check out Motherhood Maternity Women’s Maternity Bi-Stretch Secret Fit Belly It might be time for your first maternity pants. These are nice, soft, and work well already in the first and second trimesters.
If you haven’t already, start taking weekly photos of your growing belly! I only took monthly photos, and I really regret it.
You may want to start looking for a prenatal class to enroll in. It is fun to meet other women who are in a similar pregnancy stage and very informative now as you are going to be a new mother. Having a class with a qualified nurse or medical informant can help ease those fears and anxiety that you may have as you come closer to your due date. If you feel that it is too early to actually pay for anything related to giving birth, sign up for this free prenatal online class, provided by an experienced labor nurse.
Another (paid) online class to check out is the one provided by childbirth educator and author Catherine Beier. She focuses on natural childbirth and empowering moms-to-be. Check out her birthing class here!
And here I have listed a number of high-quality, useful online prenatal classes.
Week 12 Pregnancy Video
Diary of a Daughter
What’s it really like being 12 weeks pregnant…? Here’s a true diary from a 12 weeks pregnant mom (Me..!)
Week 12 – now the risk of miscarriage is going down. My husband wants me to announce our pregnancy at work. I want to put it off until after the nuchal fold screening test next week.
Are you also 12 weeks pregnant? Please share your experiences and thoughts by leaving a comment below! :-)
- Breasts and areola changes during pregnancy and beyond
- What to eat and not during pregnancy
- Miscarriage statistics week by week
Mayo Clinic, Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy
Joanne Stone MD and Keith Eddleman MD, The Pregnancy Bible: Your Complete Guide to Pregnancy and Early Parenthood
Nilsson, L; Hamberger, L. A Child Is Born
Soderberg, L., Mammapraktika. B Wahlstroms.
Experiences and expectations in the first trimester of pregnancy: a qualitative study