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9 Weeks Pregnant: Common Changes and Challenges

9 Weeks Pregnant Common Changes and Challenges

Are you feeling more exhausted this week than in week 8? 

Don’t worry. You’ve just finished your second month of pregnancy. 

By now, your body’s working overtime to develop your placenta, your baby’s lifeline. So it’s totally normal to feel the fatigue kicking in.

Being 9 weeks pregnant is an exciting time as your baby continues to grow rapidly. 

As a mother of two, I truly understand how important it is to know what to expect during this stage of pregnancy.

In this article, I’ll share the key milestones of your baby’s development, some symptoms you might experience, and tips to help you have a smoother pregnancy journey. Let’s dive in!

Baby’s Development at 9 Weeks

Baby’s Development at 9 Weeks

In week 9, your baby starts developing muscles and getting stronger by the day. But it will still take a month or two to feel little punches and kicks from your bundle of joy. 

Here is what else you can expect is happening to your baby in your very pregnant belly:

Embryo Period Ends

At 9 weeks, your baby officially transitions from an embryo to a fetus. 

From week 10 onward, your baby will look more human, with small muscles growing, making little arms, legs, and toes visible.

Essential organs like the heart, brain, kidneys, liver, and lungs will also begin to develop.

Ultrasound Can Pick Up Fetal Cardiac Activity

By this stage, your baby’s heart is fully formed and beating rapidly. It is now possible to detect the fetal heartbeat using ultrasound. 

I remember the first time I heard my baby’s heartbeat. I cried happy tears! This can be an incredibly emotional and exciting moment for parents-to-be.

Tooth Buds are Developing

Although it may seem early, ten tiny tooth buds within each band of gums begin to form around the 9th week. 

These tiny tooth foundations eventually develop into primary teeth after birth, usually around their 4th to 7th month. Although it is rare, a baby can be born with a tooth.

I highly advise all mommies-to-be to take prenatal vitamins to ensure your babies grow strong bones and teeth.

Placenta Takes Over

It’s amazing to think that when you are expecting, you are not only growing a baby but also developing a new organ, the placenta.

You are attached to the placenta through your uterus, while your baby is through the umbilical cord. It provides oxygen and nutrients to your baby while also removing waste products. 

At 9 weeks, your placenta has fully taken over, producing important hormones to support you and your baby. 

At this point, you will likely start feeling morning sickness and fatigue more often.

How Big Is My Baby at 9 Weeks?

At 9 weeks, your baby is about the size of a grape or a cherry. On average, they measure around 0.9 inches (2.3 centimeters) from crown to rump. 

How Does My Baby Look at 9 Weeks?

Your baby at 9 weeks will already have tiny earlobes, eyes, and nose. Little muscle buds that will eventually become their arms and legs are growing too. 

Your baby’s tail-like structure will now disappear, and a rounded and straightened-up head will start to form.

Symptoms You Might Experience at Week 9

Symptoms You Might Experience at Week 9

A restless night, fatigue, and heartburn are common symptoms you might feel in week 9. Learning a few pregnancy sleeping positions and purchasing a supportive pillow can work wonders to get you the rest you deserve. 

Let’s find out more pregnancy symptoms to expect and how to manage them:

1. Extreme Pregnancy Fatigue

Feeling more tired than usual is common during pregnancy. With the hormonal changes, it’s no surprise your body demands a little more from you, particularly during the first trimester

Getting enough rest is necessary, which means sleep is crucial. I linger in bed a little longer to take intermittent naps throughout the day. That extra snooze goes a long way!

2. Heartburn and Indigestion

Hormonal changes can relax the valve between your stomach and esophagus, leading to heartburn and indigestion. 

To relieve this symptom, chew on sugarless gum or Tums. As you know, chewing increases saliva production, which neutralizes the acid in your stomach.

Based on experience, eating smaller and more frequent meals helps too.

3. Breast Tenderness and Changes

In week 9, your breasts may become more sensitive and tender as they prepare for breastfeeding. You might notice an increase in size, and the veins in your breasts may become more prominent too.

Having tender and bigger breasts can be uncomfortable. 

I highly recommend buying work maternity clothes or a cotton sports bra. This should give you ample support and comfort throughout your daily activities.

4. Constipation

Pregnancy hormones can also slow down your digestive system, leading to constipation. 

It’s crucial to apply strategies to get those bowels moving at their normal pace to ease the discomfort.

Eat a lot of healthy and fiber-rich food; drink tons of water and fruit and vegetable juices preferably. Drinking hot water with lemon first thing in the morning works wonders too!

5. Mood Swings

Fluctuating hormones can also impact your emotions, leading to mood swings. It’s important to take care of your mental well-being during this time. 

Take breaks and avoid stressful situations to keep you calm and collected. It’s okay to binge-watch your favorite shows, play with some make-up, or even get a gentle massage. 

Tips for Week 9

Tips for Week 9

Pregnancy is a tough yet worthwhile journey. I’ve been through it twice, so here are some helpful tips I swear by:

1. Manage Heartburn

Eat smaller, more frequent meals and avoid spicy or greasy foods. 

If this doesn’t help, try taking antacids. These also contain extra calcium, which you need anyway.

Elevating your upper body with pillows while sleeping can also help reduce heartburn too.

2. Eat Fiber-Rich Foods

Increase your intake of fiber through fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. 

Not only do these add up to your vitamins and nutrients, but they help regulate your bowel movement too. Aim for at least 25 to 35 grams of fiber each day.

3. Fight Constipation

There are a lot of reasons why you always feel constipated when you’re pregnant. Hormones play a huge role in this symptom, but occasionally, the prenatal supplements you are taking contribute too.

Regular exercise, such as yoga, walking or swimming, can stimulate bowel movements naturally.

If that doesn’t work, consult your healthcare provider about alternatives like slow-release formulas, iron-free prenatal supplements, and stool softeners.

4. Use Cold Compress

Your breasts will start to feel tender as your body prepares itself to breastfeed once the baby arrives. The sensation can range from a dull ache to a full and sharp shooting pain.

The pain usually subsides during the second or third trimester. But until then, applying a cold compress to your breast alleviates the pain. 

5. Get Vaccinated

Talk to your healthcare provider about recommended vaccinations during pregnancy to protect both you and your baby from certain infections.

The flu shot and COVID-19 vaccine are both recommended for all pregnant women. These prevent you from getting hospitalized during your pregnancy.

Furthermore, the antibodies you develop after vaccination are passed on to your baby. 

These are crucial for your baby’s protection after birth, especially as they cannot receive any vaccinations until they are 2 months or older.

6. Consider Genetic Screenings

If you are pregnant at 35 years old or older or have a family history of genetic conditions, week 9 is a good time to discuss genetic screenings with your doctor. 

These screenings can help identify any potential genetic conditions or abnormalities.


There you have it! Congratulations to every mommy-to-be for making it to week 9. 

At 9 weeks pregnant, your baby is rapidly growing and undergoing significant developmental changes. 

From the transition to a fetus to the formation of tooth buds, each milestone is a testament to the miracle of life! 

While you may experience symptoms such as fatigue, heartburn, breast tenderness, constipation, and mood swings, remember that they are normal aspects of pregnancy. 

I wish you all the best as you can navigate this journey with greater ease and excitement.

Nayna Llenos
Nayna Llenos

Hi, I’m Nayna!
I’ve always wanted to be a mother, and I’m lucky and blessed to have two wonderful children to care for and love.
Despite this blessing, there are times wherein I do wonder if I truly am the mother my children need. Am I giving them the right food, care, and discipline to them?
But that is the beauty of parenting — you grow along with your children as they flourish to be their wonderful selves!
I wish to share my experiences with motherhood and how these tips can help you in your parenting journey.
I hope my advices and experiences will prove useful to you and that you have a smooth and wonderful journey as a mother!