This week is party time. Except not the kind where you drink too much vodka, sing badly on the karaoke and fall in a hedge. This is a hormone party!
Over the next 7 days or so your HCG level (human chorionic gonadotropin), the one pregnancy tests detect, is at its highest. This is awesome for your baby as it keeps them where they need to be. But it can make you feel absolutely grim.
And if that wasn’t enough, oestrogen and progesterone join in too and help get more blood to your baby. Amazing stuff but also explains why your mood is more up and down than a rollercoaster.
Feeling dizzy, sore boobs? They’re both normal early pregnancy symptoms (link to early pregnancy symptoms).
What does my baby look like?
All those fast changes in Week 8 carry on this week. Your strawberry sized baby now has eyes with eyelids, a mouth and a tongue. You can see the outline of fingers and toes on their hands and feet. And some big structures start to take shape like the lungs, kidneys and bones.
I feel really dizzy - is that normal?
Yes, feeling dizzy is normal (along with a whole host of other delightful early pregnancy symptoms). There are a few reasons you can feel a bit wobbly. Pregnancy hormones make your blood vessels relax and widen, which can drop your blood pressure and make you lightheaded. And they can affect your inner ear, making you feel off-balance and a bit barfy.
Getting up too quickly, not drinking or eating enough or low iron are also culprits if you feel like the world is constantly spinning.
What can you do to help yourself?
- Stop and rest. If you feel really dodgy then sit or lie down until it passes. Not ideal in the middle of Tesco but better than keeling over in the biscuit aisle.
- Slow down. Your body is doing amazing things so let it catch up. No jumping up from chairs or diving out of bed in the morning. Give your body time to adjust.
- Eat. You might be thinking that would be wonderful if you could just stop vomming for a second. Go for light, small meals. Little and often is the key.
- Drink. You can easily get dehydrated if you're sick and even if you’re not, your body needs more fluid than normal to function. Keep yourself topped up with water all day.
If you try those four things and still have serious dizzy spells or pass out, then contact your GP or midwife. It can be a sign of low iron (anaemia) which needs to be treated.
Have you joined our Facebook support group yet?