From the moment you conceive a child to the moment you deliver, a lot happens inside your womb. It’s beautiful and surprising to see how your baby grows, step by step, week by week. At 9 weeks your baby has a distinctly human shape and form, at 14 weeks it is now three times the size and can make certain facial expressions and at 28 weeks your baby can see the light from outside the womb! Let’s break it down further to understand how the baby grows inside your womb.
It is from week 4 to week 10 that all organs begin to develop, and some begin functioning too. It is thus also the most sensitive stage to hinder growth and development. By week 8 hands, feet, webbed fingers and toes are developing. By week 9 the eyes are fully formed but the eyelids are still shut until 27 weeks. At 10 weeks, the fetal period, tissues and organs grow rapidly. At week 13 your baby has developed fingerprints, veins and organs can be seen through the skin, the baby at this stage is about 3 inches long.
At 14 weeks, the start of the second trimester, your baby can frown, squint and may even start sucking the thumb! The kidneys start producing urine. The head and neck are more distinct now. The air sacs in the lungs begin developing at week 15. At 17 weeks, the skeleton starts changing from soft cartilage to bones. By week 23 the baby has a sense of movement and can feel you move around! External noises can be sensed by the baby at this stage. By the end of the second trimester, at week 27, the baby weighs around 2 pounds. The baby has a sleeping schedule by now and can close and open the eyes! The brain is active and this may be the time the baby hiccups start to tickle you!
The final trimester starts at week 28. The baby is growing rapidly and preparing to enter the world now. At week 29 the head is becoming bigger and nutritional demands are high! By week 31 your baby can turn the head from side to side and fat begins to accumulate underneath the skin. You will feel the baby moving a lot now! Babies born premature between week 34 and 37, without any serious health issue, generally grow up fine! At week 37, you are almost there! The baby is head down by now and at week 39 your baby is full term and ready to meet you! Usually the last it is safe to house your baby is 42 weeks!
There may be slight variations in development and all pregnancies differ in length from conception to delivery, but generally development follows the above pattern.