9 Weeks Pregnant: Signs, Baby Development Milestones, & Tips

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The 9th week of pregnancy or the third month is marked by several physical and emotional changes. After having crossed the first eight weeks successfully, you may be preparing for the first doctor visit as you enter the ninth week. This is when you will need your OB/GYN’s advice for healthy eating, exercise, and sleeping habits.

So, read this post to know all about the 9th week, including your baby’s development and the physical and emotional changes in your body. We also provide you with some useful tips on sailing through this week smoothly.

How Big Is Your Baby At Week 9 Pregnancy?

Your baby is about the size of a grape that measures about 1.67 inches (4.24 centimeters) (1).

Baby Development At Nine Weeks Pregnant

When you are in your 9th week of pregnancy, your developing baby’s body parts and proportions continue to develop and change quickly. Your growing baby is now out of the embryonic phase and enters into the fetal phase. It means your little embryo is now a fetus. The tail that was with the embryo disappears and looks like a small human being. Your baby’s essential body parts undergo critical developmental transformation in the months to come (2).

  • Eyes: The eyelids completely cover the eyes, they are fused and don’t open till 26th week pregnancy.
  • Ears: The earlobes are tiny and visible.
  • Other facial features: The nose, nostrils and mouth become more distinct. The mouth appears as a flat line on the surface, and the tongue starts forming.
  • Limbs: Fingers and toes are visible, wrists and ankles begin to develop. Arms are growing and bend near the elbows.
  • Neck region: Neck region becomes more defined. It also undergoes lifting and turning movements.
  • Joints: All the joints, including the baby’s elbows, shoulders, knees, ankles and wrist joints start working and allow her to move freely in the amniotic fluid.
  • Digestive system: The digestive system and diaphragm begin to develop that allows her to breathe and hiccup.
  • Skeleton and bone: At 9th week of pregnancy, your baby’s skeleton start to harden. Cartilage forms all through the body.
  • Common integument: Nipples and hair follicles slowly form.
  • Intestinal system: Baby’s pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and anus form. Also, the intestines elongate.
  • Reproductive organs: Your baby’s reproductive organs develop internally when you are in your 9th week of pregnancy. Her ovaries (if a boy, they are testes) grow, but the girl and boy fetus look the same from outside.
  • Movements: Your baby makes squirmy movements; she also starts kicking at a later stage.
  • Heart and blood flow: Your baby’s heart begins to beat around the 24th day. But in the 9th week, it divides into four chambers and valves start to form (1). The blood starts pumping in and out rapidly. It thus provides oxygen and nutrients to the baby’s growing body and likewise removes wastes from the body.

The developed placenta now takes up the final task of producing hormones. The development of essential body parts is complete in this week of pregnancy. In the coming weeks, these body parts are better defined structurally.

Changes Occurring Within Your Body At Week 9 Pregnancy:

You may feel the pregnancy, but you may not look pregnant. Though there may not be any noticeable physical changes, you will begin to observe the changes in your body.

  • Waistbands go uncomfortable: Even if you don’t have a proper bump, you may still find your waistbands uncomfortable.  Restrictive clothing around your waist can irritate you. Choose breathable and stretchy fabrics (3) (4).
  • Breast size increases: Your breasts increase in size because of the ducts and glands that begin developing at the early stage of pregnancy. You may also notice tiny blue veins that usually supply blood across the region. You should wear a maternity bra for a comfortable experience.
  • Uterus size: Uterus increases double fold and will be now in the size of a small melon. The area under the navel region becomes firm.
  • Pain in the abdomen: The uterus grows and contracts throughout the pregnancy, and the tightening is known as ‘Braxton Hicks’ contractions. If you notice vaginal bleeding along with pain, you should immediately see your doctor.
  • Gas: It is normal to pass gas during pregnancy. To help relieve yourself, you should avoid eating gas producing foods like cabbage or beans. You should not take any OTC anti-gas medications. Do not worry or feel embarrassed since anyone can understand what you might be going through.
  • Sense of taste and smell changes: Though all women in their pregnancy may not experience this, few do sense these changes. The food you may have loved earlier can now completely put you off (5). One puff of your favorite perfume can make you gag. Try avoiding the things that irritate you and do not worry since your senses return to normalcy after delivery.
  • Heartburn: Hormones like progesterone help in expanding your body with the growing baby. But, hormones also slow down the food movement along the digestive system. It can, therefore, result in heartburn. You can prevent heartburn by eating smaller meals at frequent intervals than larger meals at three intervals. Also, avoiding spicy foods and lying down after meals prevent heartburn.
  • Urge to pee more: The expanding uterus presses on your bladder since more blood is filtering through the kidneys. This means you will pass more urine frequently. If passing urine more often hurts you, you should better check with your health care provider. You can avoid drinking water two hours before bed, cut caffeine intake and empty bladder as these help to improve the condition.
  • Blood circulation increases: It is normal to carry five liters of blood in your body. But, it increases to seven or eight liters to support your growing baby. The major part of the increased blood is liquid plasma. The red blood cells usually increase in the second-trimester pregnancy. The blood circulation increases in the breasts, uterus, kidneys and almost every organ, until delivery.
  • Veins bulge: You will find bulging veins on your hands and legs. It is because of the extra blood that flows. They protect your baby while you stand or lie down. They also safeguard against the loss of blood you experience during labor.
  • Vaginal discharge increases: Vaginal discharge increases by now. It is normal during pregnancy and usage of panty liners will be helpful.
  • Gain in body weight: You will gain weight that is more likely due to water retention in the body than the baby. However, gaining too much weight or losing too little weight can be harmful. Too much weight can increase the risk of high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, complications during labor and prolonged labor.
  • Libido: Some women show disinterest in sex, while some report of showing more interest. If you experience any bleeding, you should check with your health care provider.
  • Changes in hair: Your hair may turn lustrous and thick or thin, lump and greasy.
  • Other symptoms: Backaches and headaches are common in your 9th week pregnancy. You will also be likely to experience gum bleeds and nose bleeds. Dehydration, feeling of bloating, lethargy are all the other signs you experience.

Though you may not feel like doing any physical activity, you can take small walks and do meditation and yoga. This helps in proper digestion of food (6).

Emotional Changes During 9th Week Of Pregnancy

  • Feeling of weakness: You will feel a bit weak during this period. You can still have the feeling of fatigue and nausea, but you will feel better by the trimester end.
  • Sense of guilt: Some women in their 9th week pregnancy may feel guilty that they are not able to overcome maternal love. They may even worry that their negative feelings may have an effect on their growing baby. Do not fret since your baby will not gain cognitive ability at this phase to know your feelings.
  • Exhaustion: Tiredness and exhaustion may have a toll on the growing baby. Always aim for an easy life and do not do things for which you don’t have the energy.
  • Anxiety: It is obvious that you might feel anxious about your pregnancy. You may also worry about how others may react to the announcement of your pregnancy. Do not fret since workplaces now have everything in place to help you with maternity leave free for you.
  • Stress: Do not try to take any form of stress. If you had an argument with anyone, or if you are tired and fed up, chill out by listening to some music, take a warm bath, try to relax by closing your eyes (7).

Making some time exclusively for yourself is important for your emotional health during pregnancy.

Your First Ob-Gyn Visit

The following is what you can expect from the very first visit to your obstetrician. The first examination will typically happen around 9th or 10th week (4).

  • Medical history: Your doctor will find out regarding your health, details of your earlier pregnancies, the health of your partner and family.
  • Physical examination: Your blood pressure, weight and height are measured. She may discuss any chronic issues you have and how they can affect your pregnancy. Physical exam also includes checking thyroid, breasts, lungs and heart. She will perform an internal examination of the vagina, uterus, ovaries and cervix.
  • Due date calculation: It is calculated based on the first day of your last menstrual period. A normal pregnancy lasts from 37 to 42 weeks, and an average pregnancy is for 40 weeks, i.e., 280 days. If your menstrual cycle is irregular, then your due date is based on your first ultrasound.
  • Lab tests: Your doctor may perform some common prenatal tests by taking urine and blood samples.
  • Genetic testing: Your doctor may ask you to take tests for Tay-Sachs disease, Canavan disease, cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia.
  • Future appointments: Find out with your doctor about the upcoming tests and when you can schedule your appointments.
  • Prenatal vitamins: You may get a prescription for prenatal vitamins that you need to take during the pregnancy period.

Tips For A Better 9th Week Pregnancy

Expert Tips From A Gynecologist:

1. Continue medical advice

You should continue the intake of folic acid as prescribed by your doctor. Visit your doctor more frequently. He will advise some baseline tests and sometimes special tests.

These tests include a specialized ultrasound scan called Nuchal Translucency Scan (NT Scan) to predict whether your baby is at risk of developing any abnormalities or not. You may opt for tests like first trimester serum testing (blood tests) to predict the risk more accurately.

You should not take any drugs without consulting doctors as they may be harmful for the developing baby.

2. Do not confine yourself to home

You should continue your daily activities that are possible without discomfort. Absolute bed rest may be harmful for you and your baby. So continue your normal activities indoor and outdoor but take care while travelling to avoid injury. Avoid prolonged sitting while travelling. Do not do strenuous exercise.

3. Intimacy

Most of the couples do not know whether they should continue physical relationship or not. Many fear that it might harm the pregnancy. But the fact is that sexual activity is not harmful, in general. However, it should be avoided if you have bleeding in pregnancy or other high risk factors like previous miscarriages.

Dr Sujoy Dasgupta

MBBS (Gold Medalist, Hons)
MS (OBGY- Gold Medalist)
DNB (New Delhi)
Fellow- Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (ACOG, USA)
Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist,
Specialist in Infertility and Sexual Dysfunction

Now is the time to receive prenatal care and here is how you need to go about it:

  • Join a support group: If you are not able to cope with the stress and anxiety, you should join a support group. You can also get to talk with other pregnant women that help you cope with the feelings you are undergoing. There will be professionals who specifically deal with moms-to-be to calm their emotions.
  • Beat stress: Whenever you feel overexcited or over stressed, you can get along with deep breathing exercises or go for a short walk. Doing so can reduce anxiety and stress levels. Physical activities can release endorphins in the brain, which help increase overall happiness by reducing stress levels.
  • Communication with partner: You should always feel free to express your feelings with your partner. It helps him understand what is going on with you.
  • Connect with your growing baby: Diane Sanford, the clinical psychologist, highly recommends to set at least 10 minutes aside every day to connect with your baby. You can start by relaxing in a calm area by taking deep breaths. Think about the dreams and hopes you have for your baby. You can also think about what kind of parenting style you can adopt for your child. It is a healthy way to get rid of stress and allows you to connect with your child in a better way.
  • Learn about the tests: It is a good time to find out about the diagnostic tests when you are at 9 weeks of pregnancy. If you do not understand about any test, talk to your doctor to learn about what that specific test is all about.
  • Safe workplace: It is important to make sure about your workplace’s safety policies and ensure whether it is safe for your baby. If you are working in a chemical based environment, bring the concerns to your doctor.
  • Comfortable sleep: During this week of pregnancy, you may feel more tired because of the hormonal changes, morning sickness and trouble sleeping. You may not get a proper sleep because of the frequent visits to the bathroom. You should change your sleeping positions if you are facing difficulty in sleeping (8).
  • Yoga: Enroll in a yoga or ante-natal exercise class after checking with your health care provider. It helps you meet other moms-to-be and build up a network of supportive friends. If you are a jogger, try to get into any other form of exercise. It is because jarring is not ideal and can have an impact on your baby.

Nutrition At 9th Week Pregnancy

It is very important to maintain a healthy and nutritious diet during pregnancy (9).

1. Wholesome diet

  • If you experience morning sickness, keep crackers or biscuits near your bed. Eat one before you get off the bed as it can keep away morning sickness.
  • Ginger tea or ginger ale can reduce the effects of morning sickness.
  • You can include healthy snacks in between your meals.
  • Avoid smelling foods and you can add a dash of lemon to your tea or water.
  • Mints can also have an effect on reducing nausea and morning sickness.

2. Vitamin B6

  • It helps in the production of red blood cells.
  • Your doctor may prescribe you vitamin B6 supplements to add to your diet (10).

3. Magnesium

  • Magnesium is important for both mom-to-be and baby.
  • The main sources include rice, beans and bananas. Some other potential sources include soybeans, nuts, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
  • You can also find magnesium in whole grains. Small traces are also found in non-refined cereals, leafy greens and dairy products.
  • Add these foods in your everyday diet (11).

4. Nutritious snacks

  • You should include healthy snacks during pregnancy so that your body gets all the nutritional requirements.
  • Whole grain bread, whole grain crackers and tomato soup are great options that ease morning sickness as well.
  • Rusks, lemonade and ginger tea are also healthy choices.
  • You can also include bananas, nuts and cucumbers.
  • All these items are great for both you and your baby’s health.

Tips For Dad-To-Be

  • Create a quiet and tranquil environment in your bedroom. You can place dimmer bulbs in place of brighter bulbs.
  • She may have mood swings that can annoy you. Try to deal with the situation calmly so that neither of you ends up in a bad mood.
  • Show your love for her during her most wonderful phase, so as to win her love for a lifetime.

The 9th week of pregnancy is a vital time for your baby’s growth since it is at this point that all of the significant developmental changes occur. It’s also time for your first prenatal appointment. While the physical changes of your pregnancy will not be visible until later, you may notice emotional and physical changes such as larger breasts, abdominal pain, an increase in uterine size, anxiety, and exhaustion. Therefore, be cautious and at ease in whatever you do, and eat a nutritious and well-balanced diet.


MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
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Rebecca Malachi

Rebecca is a pregnancy writer and editor with a passion for delivering research-based and engaging content in areas of fertility, pregnancy, birth, and post-pregnancy. She has been into health and wellness writing since 2010. She received her graduate degree in Biotechnology and Genetics from Loyola Academy, Osmania University and obtained a certification in ‘Nutrition and Lifestyle in Pregnancy’ from Ludwig... more