Your baby, the prenatal visit, and tips for the 6th week of pregnancy.
By the 6th week of pregnancy, your baby's heart has started beating and can often be seen early this week by transvaginal ultrasound. The baby is now about 1/17 of an inch in length and growing rapidly.
If an ultrasound were to be performed this early in the pregnancy, the baby would look like a round circle in the womb with a small nub on one side. The nub is the attachment point of the egg to the uterine lining. Buds are starting to develop that will later become the arms and legs. Moms pregnant with multiples will see the same progression by week 6.
At the prenatal visit
You can schedule your first ultrasound with your doctor to assess for any risks and to check the baby's heart rate. During the transvaginal ultrasound, you will be able to see and hear the heartbeat. This is a very special moment. A heart rate over 100 beats per minute is a good sign. However, a heart rate below 90 beats per minute can be worrisome and increases the risk of a miscarriage.
Tips for this week
Cut out the alcohol: As soon as you find out you're pregnant, you should not drink any alcohol. The U.S. Surgeon General officially recommends that you should not have any alcohol during pregnancy, if you are planning a pregnancy, or even at risk for pregnancy.
Revise your eating habits: You might be nauseated and not wanting much food now, but you also might feel ravenous. Either way, stick to healthy protein, vegetables, fruit, and carbs. Avoid all processed food which can contain additives and chemicals that can leave you feeling sluggish, exhausted, or sick (and do nothing to provide nutrition for you or your growing fetus).
Start journaling: Write down one thing every day that you might want to remember and one day read to your child. Maybe it's ideas for baby names or what you thought when you found out you were pregnant or what your mom said when you told her. If you get stuck, simply write the date, how many weeks pregnant you are, and what you did that day. You may not think it's much now but you will relish these days years from now (and so will your child!).