First trimester: weeks 1 to 12

You're pregnant: congratulations! The first weeks of your pregnancy are a vital time as your pregnancy gets established. While you get used to being pregnant, your body is busy building a baby. How exciting!

Weeks 1-12 infographic

First trimester: key stages

The first trimester begins on the first day of your last period and lasts until the end of week 12. This means that by the time you know for sure you're pregnant, you might already be five or six weeks pregnant!

A lot happens during these first three months. The fertilised egg rapidly divides into layers of cells and implants in the wall of your womb where it carries on growing. These layers of cells become an embryo, which is what the baby is called at this stage.

During this trimester, your baby grows faster than at any other time. By six weeks, a heartbeat can usually be heard and by the end of week 12, your baby's bones, muscles and all the organs of the body have formed. At this point, your baby looks like a tiny human being and is now called a fetus. He or she will even be practising swallowing!

Lifestyle changes in the first trimester of pregnancy

You may need to make some lifestyle changes now that you are pregnant. Find out which foods and medicines you should avoid to keep your baby safe and healthy. You’ll also need to cut out alcohol and smoking, and reduce your caffeine intake.

You might be surprised to learn that caffeine is not just found in coffee, but also in tea, chocolate and energy drinks! Find out how much caffeine is in your daily diet.

Get your free guide to healthy eating straight to your inbox.

Try not to worry if you smoked or drank alcohol before you found out you were pregnant. Now that you know, you can take steps to looking after yourself and your baby.

Get help to stop smoking.

We also have lots of useful tips for coping with everyday pregnancy niggles. It’s common for women to experience symptoms such as morning sickness, cramp and indigestion during the first trimester. But try not to worry, these symptoms mean that your baby is growing strong and healthy!

Don't forget that your mental health is just as important as your physical health. It's normal to feel some anxiety and stress but it shouldn't be ongoing. If what you’re feeling isn’t normal for you, talk to your GP or midwife about it. They are there to help. 

Read more about mental wellbeing in pregnancy.

Find out more about the first trimester

Sources

1. NHS Choices (2012). “Your pregnancy week by week”. National Health Services: Choices. Accessed online on 02.02.2015: http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/pregnancy-week-by-week.aspx#close Page last reviewed: 22/07/2014. Next review due: 22/07/2016

2. Macdonald S, Magill-Cuerden J (2012) Mayes’ Midwifery, 14th edition, London, Ballière Tindall

3. NICE (2008). “Antenatal care: NICE clinical guideline 62”. National Institue for health and care excellence 2008; accessed online on 15.01.2015: http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg62/resources/guidance-antenatal-care-pdf (last review August 2014). 

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Last reviewed on April 1st, 2015. Next review date April 1st, 2018.

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Comments

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 27 Jun 2017 - 12:22

    Hi, I recently did a home pregnancy test 3 times and they all came back that i was pregnant. Last day of period was 17th May so I am thinking I am 6 weeks, is that right?
    I am going back to Australia in August but I am desperately trying to get an appointment with a GP but because I don't have proof of address no one is seeing me, the hospitals have told me I need a referral from GP before I go see them and i spoke to a midwife this morning who told me that they cant do anything with early pregnancy that I have to wait a few weeks. I am really stressing out that no one can help me. My boyfriend and I are living at an address but are not meant to be at that address and unable to register at local GP. Could you please give me some advice, I need to see someone asap!!!

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 27 Jun 2017 - 12:33

    Hi there,
    It is difficult to register at a GP if you are not living in the property for the foreseeable future. You do not need to access midwifery care until you are 8 weeks pregnant or more though as they will be no additional care up until this point anyway for any woman.
    The easiest way to make contact with a midwife- bypassing the GP, is to google the hospital that you would like to start your maternity care with and look for a direct number/email for them. It is likely to be called "direct access to a midwife" or contact a midwife etc. Most U.K hospitals have a telephone number or email address for you to make contact with a midwife. The first booking in appointment with a midwife needs to take place between 8-12 weeks gestation- you will be scanned after this appointment between 11-13 weeks.
    If you need more information on this, please feel free to call us for more advice on 0800 0147800

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 24 Jun 2017 - 18:26

    Hi my last period was 29 April , but no period since ( regular 28 days ) on the 3rd June I had some spotting , I'm not on any form of contraception , I feel out of sorts with myself , today iv been feeling nauseous but not being sick ( but I was never sick with my other children) , iv had constipation , my partner says iv been having mood swings , iv been emotional ( crying ) , I'm unsure weather it's pregnancy or menopause , my mums past away so iv no one to ask , please help .

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 26 Jun 2017 - 11:38

    It is not possible to confirm a pregnancy at this stage without a pregnancy test but you could be as much as 8 weeks pregnant. The most likely age to reach the menopause is 45-55 but it is certainly not impossible for it to be earlier. If you are not able to do a home pregnancy test are you able to see a doctor for confirmation?

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 14 Jun 2017 - 01:55

    My last Period was 29 March. I took a pregnancy test it was positive and showed 3+ weeks in April. Now am feeling my Tammy is very sore sleeping is a problem, am even having difficult wearing any thing with elastic, and my Tommy is showing already I thought the bamp will show after 12weeks is this normal. I haven't gone to the doctor yet coz I still have some issues to sort out with my medical insurance. Is what am feeling normal and why do I have to go to the lu many times

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 14 Jun 2017 - 11:42

    Hi Zuri,
    Please get seen by your doctor or midwife today as you are already coming to the end of your first trimester and need to start antenatal care as soon as possible. you need to know what your options are in regards to scans and blood tests. Going to the loo so many times may just be due to early pregnancy but I would want to check that you haven't got a urinary tract infection as well. You can also call us here at Tommy's and talk to a midwife on 0800 0147 800 or email us on midwife@Tommys.org
    Hope to hear from you soon
    Anna-Tommy's Midwife

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 13 Jun 2017 - 19:06

    My last period was on 27th April, on 25th may I saw period for a day and half and I had unprotected sex this two months. Please am I pregnant. Am afraid to do pregnancy test.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 14 Jun 2017 - 10:36

    Hi Rosy,
    If you have been having unprotected sex over the last two months it is possible that you are pregnant. You mention a period but this seems very short lasting.
    I appreciate that you are feeling frightened but if you don't do a pregnancy test you won't know whether or not you are pregnant and if you are you can get support and find out what options are available to you. Please buy a test today and call us if we can be of any support to you on 0800 0147 800.
    Anna - Tommy's Midwife

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 13 Jun 2017 - 18:12

    My last period was on 27th April, on 25th may I saw period for a day and half and I had unprotected sex this two months. Please am I pregnant. Am afraid to do pregnancy test.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 8 Jun 2017 - 11:51

    I saw my last period on d 3rd of May 2017,always 28days.And in June 5th i saw it again is it possible to be pregnant?pls help me easy my worries.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 8 Jun 2017 - 12:03

    Hi, if you have not missed a period then you shouldn't be pregnant. If the period that you have had in June was a normal period for you, then again you may not be pregnant. If you have been having unprotected sex then there is a chance of a pregnancy but you have not missed a period so the likelihood of you being pregnant is relatively low. That's not to say that in some cases women don't miss a period or have some bleeding and they are pregnant. If you think that you may be pregnant then you can always take a pregnancy test, but again you haven't missed a period, so being pregnant is highly unlikely. Hope this has reassured you a little. Take Care, Tommy's Midwives x

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 5 Jun 2017 - 05:33

    Hi I am trying to get pregnant for the longest while I did an ultrasound and it shows all my organs are good in shape and size what is going wrong I had sexual I intercouse to with my husband the day after my last cycle finish can I get pregnant that way or will I become pregnant

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 5 Jun 2017 - 11:53

    Hi. How long have you been trying to get pregnant? In the UK we recommend that couples try for a year before we suggest that they see a doctor for advice. Have you seen our page on 'getting pregnant' ? It may help. https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/getting-pregnant/how-conception-works

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 30 May 2017 - 12:57

    If my last period was on the 18th of april,how many weeks pregnant am i?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 31 May 2017 - 11:21

    Hi Nikiruka
    Congratulations of your pregnancy. Using the link below, you can enter the 18th april as your last menstrual period date, as well as the average length of your cycle to work out roughly how many weeks pregnant you are and to get your estimated due date. Please take good care of yourself!
    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 29 May 2017 - 19:10

    hi i saw my last period on 28 april when i went for a test on 27 may i was pos so how many weeks is my pregnant thenks

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 25 May 2017 - 14:34

    I want to know how many weeks pregnant I am.I saw my period last on April 8.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 25 May 2017 - 16:37

    Hello! If the first day of your last period was on the 8th April, then you are nearly 7 weeks pregnant. If you have had a positive pregnancy test then you need to see the GP, who can refer you to the midwife. Take care Tommy's Midwives x

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 31 May 2017 - 11:12

    Hi, using the link below, you can work out your estimated due date and roughly how many weeks pregnant you are by using your last menstrual period date of the 8th april, and putting in your average menstrual length cycle. Congratulations!

    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 31 May 2017 - 11:12

    Hi, using the link below, you can work out your estimated due date and roughly how many weeks pregnant you are by using your last menstrual period date of the 8th april, and putting in your average menstrual length cycle. Congratulations!

    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 15 May 2017 - 21:51

    I've just found out I'm pregnant but unsure of how far gone I am. I had a 4 day mens cycle (which is normal) march 2017 and a day and 1/2 mens cycle at the beginning of April. Gp doesn't know how many weeks I could be , midwives haven't been in contact. Any ideas?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 17 May 2017 - 09:27

    Hi there.
    It might be necessary to date your pregnancy via Ultrasound scan if your dates are uncertain.
    You can try our pregnancy calculator - see link below- using your last menstrual period date as your april period, and give your average length of menstrual cycle. That will give an estimation of how many weeks pregnant you might be. But an ultrasound scan will be more accurate.
    You can contact your local midwifery service via your local hospitals website if you have still not got a midwife booking appointment and you are concerned.
    Please take good care of yourself

    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 12 Jun 2017 - 14:12

    I had my period on 28 April bt May I did nt got intil me my period nvr come why everybody reply I need to knw

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 12 Jun 2017 - 14:32

    Hello
    Have you done a pregnancy test? If your periods are regular and you have had unprotected sex there is a chance that you could be 6 weeks pregnant. An ultrasound scan would confirm your dates. Glad that you have found our site. Please look after yourself and follow the health advice that we provide. Best wishes

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 14 May 2017 - 15:22

    um pregnant n I want to know he far I am .I had my last period on the1st of April so how far can I be

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 15 May 2017 - 11:01

    Hi
    We use the last menstrual period to calculate your due date. If this was April 1st your due date will be 7th January 2018 making you 6 weeks plus 2 days today. Your first scan appointment will confirm the date for you.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 13 May 2017 - 18:33

    Hello I'm 37 and have PCOS. It took 3 years and IVF to conceive my 19 month old daughter, who I still breastfeed twice a day. I developed post natal hypothyroidism. I recently started metformin to TTC. Today by some miracle I got a positive home pregnancy test-I am 4w4d. This week I also got a call from the doctors telling me to reduce my thyroxine as I've gone hyperthyroid now. TSH 0.07, T4 19.2 and T3 4.4. It'll take 4 weeks for my reduced size to take effect. My sister has had two miscarriages (you have helped her, thank you) and has just been found to be hyperthyroid. Whilst I am over the moon and staggered that I have conceived naturally, I am so anxious about miscarriage. I've had very light brown (barely a tint) discharge since 10dpo and I had one red spot at 10dpo. All pregnancies are precious and this one is a miracle to me - I need to know what I can do to ensure my thyroid levels don't risk my pregnancy. I've some progesterone left over from IVF so I'm going to use them up for the next week. Also, should I stop breastfeeding my daughter? Thank you so much-it's Saturday so my doctors are shut (and are not great with endocrinology or fertility issues)

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 15 May 2017 - 13:12

    Hello and congratulations on your pregnancy. I would suggest that you make an appointment to see your GP as soon as possible and discuss the thyroid levels in the context of the pregnancy.
    In the mean time I cannot advise that you take the progesterone tablets that you have left over. Although the BNF states that these tablets are not known to be harmful, studies have shown that progesterone tablets do not really prevent miscarriage. In addition the medication may require storage in a fridge or cool area to maintain it's potency. In a spontaneous pregnancy it is thought that the ovaries will produce enough progesterone to maintain the pregnancy naturally.
    How lovely that you are still feeding your daughter. You can continue with this for as long as you and she wants to. You may find of course that she instinctively stops on her own. Some people believe that the taste changes in a pregnancy and the toddler no longer wants to feed. All the best Tommy's midwives x

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 12 May 2017 - 14:43

    Hi,my last period was on 12th April and lasted for 3days which is not suppose to be so,my period normally last for 5days,untill now i hve not seen my period till now which suppose to come on the 11 (bin yesterday),i don't know if am pregnant cos feeling fuller nd bloat....though,i've not done d pregnancy test....
    But,could it be am pregnant?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 15 May 2017 - 12:38

    Hello
    Sometimes periods can be irregular and this is not something to worry about but if you think you could be pregnant I would suggest that you do a pregnancy test to confirm either way. x

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 10 May 2017 - 07:42

    I had my last menses around 4th April 2017 and ended on the 10th of April... I have not seen my menses this month and today is 10th May will it be a pregnancy because I tasted positive when I did a
    home test ..how old is the pregnancy now

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 10 May 2017 - 09:21

    Hi Nancy,
    Using our pregnancy calculator below, you can find out roughly how many weeks you are by putting in the date of the first day of your last menstrual period, as well as your average length of menstrual cycle- this will calculate a rough due date and how many weeks pregnant you are currently.
    Congratulations! Please do take care of yourself!

    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 7 May 2017 - 18:56

    Hello,
    I have very recently found out I am pregnant after several attempts at IVF. I am 38 and currently 4wks 3days pregnant. I had a missed miscarriage at 10 weeks in Jan 16 following a frozen embryo transfer. Tests on the baby identified no abnormalities. I had swabs taken when being treated at the hospital which identified bacterial vaginosis and e-coli. I had anti biotic treatment for this. As I am pregnant again I am terrified that I may have BV again and that this had some impact on my last miscarriage. I went to my GP yesterday and had swabs taken. I have been advised I may be prescribed metronidazole if BV is identified however I am very concerned about taking any medication, particularly in the first trimester. However I am also scared that if I do not have treatment I may be more susceptible to another miscarriage. What are current recommendations regarding antibiotics in pregnancy and BV in pregnancy. I have been using Balance Activ BV gel as it says it is safe in pregnancy. Would this be a safe and effective alternative to antibiotics?
    Thank you, Lesley

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 8 May 2017 - 16:18

    Thank you for your comment. Congratulations on your pregnancy and I hope everything goes well for you
    I understand your concerns about taking medication in pregnancy,
    "If BV develops in pregnancy, it may increase the risk of pregnancy-related complications, such as premature birth or miscarriage. However, this risk is small and appears more significant for women who have had these complications in a previous pregnancy. BV causes no problems in the vast majority of pregnancies.
    As a precaution, you should contact your GP if you're pregnant and you begin to have vaginal discharge (although discharge can be a normal part of pregnancy)."

    If you do have BV, I would advise that you consider taking Metronidazole if prescribed; medications are not usually prescribed in pregnancy unless there is a risk to your health if you do not take them so please be guided by your GP's advice

    As you are using a BV gel, please also be aware of the following facts to help you make a decision whether or not to take metronidazole
    "Vaginal pH correction treatments are a relatively new way of treating BV. These usually involve applying a gel to the inside of your vagina that changes the acid balance, making it a less hospitable environment for harmful bacteria. Most vaginal pH correction treatments are available over the counter from pharmacists.

    However, it's not clear how effective these treatments are for treating BV. Some studies have suggested they may help, whereas others suggest they're either ineffective or less effective than antibiotics"

    I have attached 2 links that have additional information that may help you

    https://cks.nice.org.uk/bacterial-vaginosis#!scenario:1

    http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Bacterialvaginosis/Pages/Treatment.aspx

    Hope this helps
    Please contact us again or call our helpline for further advice
    0800 0147 800
    Take care
    Marianne
    Tommy's Midwife


  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 11 May 2017 - 10:58

    Thank you so much Marianne.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 6 May 2017 - 16:46

    My last period was the 14 of march I took a pregnancy test an it came out positive .So my concern is how many week can I ne pregnant

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 8 May 2017 - 11:50

    Thank you for your query. As your last period was 14th march, you are currently 7 weeks and 6 days pregnant.
    I hope everything is going well and would encourage you to either contact your GP or local maternity unit so that you can start your pregnancy care. Make sure you are staying healthy-by having a healthy diet, following safe eating in pregnancy advice and taking folic acid supplements for pregnancy. I have attached some links that you may find helpful
    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date
    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/calculate-your-due-date
    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/antenatal-care-pregnancy

    Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or call our helpline 0800 0147 800

    Marianne-Tommy's Midwife

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 26 Apr 2017 - 09:38

    Hi please get back in contact if you need advice as your message is incomplete.
    Tommy's Midwives

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 25 Apr 2017 - 09:04

    I had my last period on 25th March and unprotected sex on de 6th of April. I took post in or 2 after twelve ours . I've had a posi

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 24 Apr 2017 - 10:44

    I m pregnant and uts my 6 week bt i m not having any splecial feeling like vomiting. Is it ok wid my pregnancy

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 24 Apr 2017 - 13:23

    Congratulations on your pregnancy.
    Every woman id different and experiences pregnancy differently. For some that means a lot of nausea and vomiting and for some none at all. Try not to worry - you may be one of the lucky ones to not get the nausea and vomiting, or you may find that as the pregnancy progresses you start to feel it.
    Enjoy your pregnancy and if you haven't already start taking Folic Acid and Vitamin D supplements as well as visiting your GP or midwife for antenatal care and advice.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 23 Apr 2017 - 10:22

    My depo provera wore off before my next injection was due , I had my period and was just wondering if there is any chance I could be pregnant , I've been feeling dizzy and feeling sick all day for the past week and I passed out once . I had my injection on the 18/4/17 , if I am pregnant can the injection harm the baby ??
    Thanks

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 24 Apr 2017 - 09:54

    Hi - thanks for your message.
    Its difficult to say if you are or aren't pregnant without a positive pregnancy test. Please visit your GP who can advise and maybe able to carry out a pregnancy test if you aren't able to - but also for the symptoms you have had too.
    If you would like to discuss in more detail please feel to contact us here at Tommy's Pregnancy Line on 08000147800 or via email midwife@tommys.org

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 21 Apr 2017 - 20:03

    I took pregnant test 20th april and found im pregnant..my last period was 15thmarch..how many weeks my pregnancy is?..Also im very stressing because i have problem with sciatic pain/low back pain..is this will be the risk to my pregnancy?..
    Thanks.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 24 Apr 2017 - 09:49


    Hi, Congratulations on your pregnancy and also for finding our site which will help you over the next months.
    If the first day of your last period (your LMP) was on 15/03/2107 then you would around 5+5 weeks pregnant - depending on how long your cycle is.
    If you haven't already please start taking folic acid and vitamin d supplements and visit your GP for a check and to be referred for antenatal care.
    I'm sorry to hear you have sciatic/back pain - neither are a risk to your pregnancy but you may find that you may find the discomfort increasing - again visit your GP early for advice and support.
    Good luck for the coming months!

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 20 Apr 2017 - 08:37

    Hey there :) i found out that i am pregnant obly yesterday and i am super exited for it. But today i am starting to have a bit of cramps and i am very scared about it i am nearly 7 weeks in (6 weeks 6 days).... i am so scared that i will loose my baby .. is it normal to have cramps or a little bit of pain?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 20 Apr 2017 - 09:56

    Hi, Congratulations on your pregnancy and also for finding our site which will help you over the next months. It isn't uncommon to experience some mild period like pain which is usually attributed to implantation, or occasional sharp pain where the ligaments are stretching. If the symptoms don't resolve or if they get any worse please see your GP for advice.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 16 Apr 2017 - 16:00

    Hi Good eve,
    I am 11 weeks now and no heart beat found when scanned. What should be done to bring the heart beat. I am so scared and under medication to induce heart beat. Till he many weeks I should wait and what is the maximum week ?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 18 Apr 2017 - 09:51

    Hi there - I'm sorry to hear you have been told that there is difficulty in finding baby's heart activity during an early pregnancy scan. In order to advise I would need some more information and clarification of a few details - please contact us either via email midwife@tommys.org or on our Pregnancy Helpline 08000147800 so that we an offer confidential support and advice.

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 10 Apr 2017 - 10:53

    Hi ! I am Pregnant and almost 8 weeks. Had issues with my partner because he said he isn't ready financially. I cried and stressed a lot during my 3-4 weeks period, could this have affected the baby in anyway?

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