As a first time mommy-to-be, this is one of the most exciting parts of your pregnancy – when your belly first ‘pops’. One of the most frequently asked questions on pregnancy and baby websites is: when is my preggy belly going to start showing?
Well, this will depend on a number of factors, but in short – most women start showing from around 12 weeks. Factors which influence whether a woman starts showing earlier or only in the second trimester include: fitness levels, body type, weight and the size of your baby. Some women start getting a ‘bloated’ feeling as soon as a week after they get a positive pregnancy test. Bloating isn’t the same as showing – it’s more of a swelling that makes a woman’s pants fit tighter.
12 weeks is an accepted time for a preggy belly to start showing, as at this stage the uterus expands above the pubic bone.
First time moms generally start showing later, while ‘veteran’ moms often start showing earlier. This is because their uterine and abdominal muscles have already been stretched from earlier pregnancies.
Why am I showing so early?
As already mentioned, most women start showing at around the 12 week mark, while others only ‘pop’ well into their second trimester. Reasons why a woman might show earlier include:
- A multiple pregnancy (twins for example)
- A uterus that’s tilted back (retroverted)
Remember, each woman and each pregnancy is different. Your focus should be on staying healthy and making sure your unborn baby receives the necessary nutrients for healthy foetal development. Regular scans are important, as this is when any potential problems are detected. It’s only in the second and third trimester that doctors can assess whether your baby is developing normally – and they will let you know if there is any cause for concern. Make sure your medical aid covers both you and your baby – visit Momentum Health for more information.
The best thing you can do for you and your unborn baby is to relax, stay healthy and absorb the experience and miracle that is carrying a child. Enjoy your pregnancy!