Stages of Pregnancy Development Month-by-Month (2023)

Stages of Pregnancy Development Month-by-Month (1)

The stages of pregnancy development in the womb are a beautiful design by God. Below is a breakdown of your baby’s development in the womb month-to-month.

First Trimester (conception – 12 weeks)

Month One (conception – 4 weeks)

As the baby grows, a water-tight sac forms around it, gradually filling with fluid. This is called the amniotic sac, and it helps keep your growing baby safe.

During this time, the placenta also develops. The placenta is an organ inside the uterus that transfers nutrients from the mother to the baby. Think of the placenta as a food source for your baby throughout the pregnancy.

In these first few weeks, the baby’s face will begin to take form with large dark circles for the eyes. The mouth, lower jaw, and throat are developing. Blood cells are taking shape, and circulation will begin. The tiny “heart” tube will beat 65 times a minute by the end of the fourth week.

By the end of the first month, your baby is about 1/4-inch-long. Many women discover they are pregnant around week 4 of pregnancy after their first missed menstrual cycle.

Month Two (5 weeks – 8 weeks)

Your baby’s facial features continue to develop. Each ear begins as a little fold of skin at the side of the head. Tiny buds that eventually grow into arms and legs are forming. Fingers, toes, and eyes are also forming.

The neural tube (brain, spinal cord, and other neural tissue of the central nervous system) is well-formed now. The digestive tract and sensory organs begin to develop too. Bone starts to replace cartilage.

(Video) Fetal development month by month

Your baby’s head is large in proportion to the rest of its body at this point. At about 6 weeks, your baby’s heartbeat can usually be detected.

By the end of the second month, your baby is about 1-inch-long and weighs about 1/30 of an ounce.

Month Three (9 weeks – 12 weeks)

Your baby’s arms, hands, fingers, feet, and toes are fully formed. At this stage, your baby is starting to explore a bit by doing things like opening and closing its fists and mouth. Fingernails and toenails are beginning to develop and the external ears are fully formed. The beginnings of teeth are forming under the gums. Your baby’s reproductive organs also develop, but the baby’s gender is difficult to distinguish on ultrasound.

By the end of the third month, your baby is fully formed. All the organs and limbs (extremities) are present and will continue to develop in order to become functional. The baby’s circulatory and urinary systems are also working and the liver produces bile.

The third and fourth months are typically when abortions are performed. The lie circulating is that babies are not formed at the time of abortion and it is just a clump of cells. Looking at the stages of development in the womb, we know that a baby is actually fully formed by month three of pregnancy.

At the end of the third month, your baby is about 4 inches long and weighs about 1 ounce.

Since your baby’s most critical development has taken place, your chance of miscarriage drops considerably after three months.

Second Trimester (13 weeks – 28 weeks)

Month Four (13 weeks – 16 weeks)

(Video) 9 Months In The Womb: A Remarkable Look At Fetal Development Through Ultrasound By

Your baby’s heartbeat is now audible through an instrument called a doppler. The fingers and toes are well-defined. Eyelids, eyebrows, eyelashes, nails, and hair are formed. Teeth and bones become denser. Your baby can even suck his or her thumb, yawn, stretch and make faces!

The nervous system is starting to function. The reproductive organs and genitalia are now fully developed, and your doctor can see on an ultrasoundif you are having a boy or a girl.

By the end of the fourth month, your baby is about 6 inches long and weighs about 4 ounces.

Month Five (17 weeks – 20 weeks)

At this stage, you may begin to feel your baby moving around! Your baby has developed muscles and is exercising them. This first movement is called quickening and can feel like a flutter to the mother.

Hair begins to grow on the baby’s head. Your baby’s shoulders, back, and temples are covered by a soft fine hair called lanugo. This hair protects your baby and is usually shed at the end of the baby’s first week of life.

The baby’s skin is covered with a whitish coating called vernix caseosa. This substance is thought to protect your baby’s skin from long exposure to amniotic fluid. This coating is shed just before birth.

By the end of the fifth month, your baby is about 10 inches long and weighs from 1/2 to 1 pound. At 20 weeks pregnant you are halfway!

Month Six (21 weeks – 24 weeks)

(Video) Fetal Development|| Month By Month || Development Of Baby in The Womb || Life Before Birth

If you could look inside the uterus at your baby right now, you would see that your baby’s skin is reddish in color, wrinkled and veins are visible through the baby’s translucent skin. The Baby’s finger and toe prints are visible. At this stage, the eyes begin to open.

Baby responds to sounds happening outside the womb by moving or increasing the pulse. You may notice jerking motions if the baby has hiccups.

If a baby is born prematurely, your baby can survive after the 23rd week with intensive care.

By the end of the sixth month, your baby is about 12 inches long and weighs about 2 pounds.

Month Seven (25 weeks – 28 weeks)

Your baby will continue to mature and is reserving body fat. At this point, the baby’s hearing is fully developed. The baby changes position frequently and responds to things like sound, pain and light. The amniotic fluid begins to diminish slowly from now until the end of the pregnancy.

Around this time, it is shown that when the mother speaks the baby’s heart rate slows down a bit, showing that the mother’s voice has a calming effect on the baby. Baby will recognize mom’s voice at the time of birth!

At the end of the seventh month, your baby is about 14 inches long and weighs from 2 to 4 pounds.

Third Trimester (29 weeks – 40 weeks)

Month Eight (29 weeks -32 weeks)

(Video) Pregnancy Week By Week || 1 - 41 Weeks Fetal Developments

Your baby is continuing to mature and developing reserves of body fat. You may notice that your baby is kicking more. Baby’s brain is developing rapidly at this time, and your baby can see and hear. Most internal systems are well developed, but the lungs may still be immature.

At the end of the eighth month, our baby is about 18 inches long and weighs as much as 5 pounds.

Month Nine (33 weeks – 36 weeks)

During this stage, your baby will continue to grow and mature. The lungs are close to being fully developed at this point.

Your baby’s reflexes are coordinated so he or she can blink, close the eyes, turn the head, grasp firmly, and respond to sounds, light, and touch.

At the end of the ninth month, yourbaby is about 17 to 19 inches long and weighs from 5 ½ pounds to 6 ½ pounds.

Month Ten (37 weeks – 40 weeks)

In this final month, you could go into laborat any time. You may notice that your baby moves less due to tight space. At this point, your baby’s position may have changed to prepare for birth. Ideally, the baby is head down in your uterus. You may feel very uncomfortable in this final stretch of time as the baby drops down into your pelvis and prepares for birth.

Your baby is ready to meet the world!

(Video) Fetal Development 3D Animation - Infuse Medical

Your baby is about 18 to 20 inches long and weighs about 7 pounds.

Contact us today for more information on what to expect during your pregnancy.

Written by: Lex Kanode
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What are the pregnancy developmental stages? ›

The process of prenatal development occurs in three main stages. The first two weeks after conception are known as the germinal stage, the third through the eighth week is known as the embryonic period, and the time from the ninth week until birth is known as the fetal period.

Why are the first 3 months first trimester of a pregnancy the most important developmentally? ›

The first trimester is the most crucial to your baby's development. During this period, your baby's body structure and organ systems develop. Most miscarriages and birth defects occur during this period. Your body also undergoes major changes during the first trimester.

What develops in the 1 month of pregnancy? ›

Month 1 (weeks 1 through 4)

As the fertilized egg grows, a water-tight sac forms around it, gradually filling with fluid. This is called the amniotic sac, and it helps cushion the growing embryo. During this time, the placenta also develops.

What are the 5 developmental stages of a baby from start to finish? ›

Five Stages of Child Development
  • Newborn. During the first month of life, newborns exhibit automatic responses to external stimuli. ...
  • Infant. Infants develop new abilities quickly in the first year of life. ...
  • Toddler. ...
  • Preschool. ...
  • School age.
Sep 26, 2018

What are the stages of pregnancy quizlet? ›

  • Germinal Phase (1) Conception-2 weeks. -Zygote. ...
  • Zygote. In the germinal phase. ...
  • Placenta. In the germinal phase. ...
  • Embryonic Stage (2) 2-8 weeks. ...
  • Fetal Stage (3) 8th week-birth. ( ...
  • 3rd month. Part of the Fetal Stage. ...
  • 4th month. Part of the Fetal Stage. ...
  • 5th month. Part of the Fetal Stage.

What are the riskiest weeks of pregnancy? ›

Weeks 0 to 6

These early weeks mark the highest risk of miscarriage. A woman can have a miscarriage in the first week or two without realizing she's pregnant. It may even seem like a late period.

Which is the risky period of pregnancy? ›

You're most fertile at the time of ovulation (when an egg is released from your ovaries), which usually occurs 12 to 14 days before your next period starts. This is the time of the month when you're most likely to get pregnant.

When does a baby's heartbeat start? ›

A fetal heartbeat may first be detected by a vaginal ultrasound as early as 5 1/2 to 6 weeks after gestation. That's when a fetal pole, the first visible sign of a developing embryo, can sometimes be seen. But between 6 1/2 to 7 weeks after gestation, a heartbeat can be better assessed.

What develops in the first 2 months of pregnancy? ›

Just four weeks after conception, the neural tube along your baby's back is closing. The baby's brain and spinal cord will develop from the neural tube. The heart and other organs also are starting to form. Structures necessary to the formation of the eyes and ears develop.

What develops in the first 4 weeks of pregnancy? ›

In these early weeks of pregnancy, the embryo is attached to a tiny yolk sac that provides nourishment. A few weeks later, the placenta will be fully formed and take over the transfer of nutrients to the embryo. The embryo is surrounded by fluid inside the amniotic sac.

What develops in the first 2 weeks of pregnancy? ›

Between the first and second week of conception, the blastocyst attaches into the uterine lining, thus beginning the embryonic stage. After these first weeks of fetal development, basic growth begins, as the brain, spinal cord, heart and gastrointestinal tract begin to form.

What are the 5 stages of growth and development? ›

  • Infancy (neonate and up to one year age)
  • Toddler ( one to five years of age)
  • Childhood (three to eleven years old) - early childhood is from three to eight years old, and middle childhood is from nine to eleven years old.
  • Adolescence or teenage (from 12 to 18 years old)
  • Adulthood.
Sep 3, 2022

What are the 9 stages of development? ›

The average human life span falls into nine stages:
  • prenatal development.
  • infancy and toddlerhood.
  • early childhood.
  • middle childhood.
  • adolescence.
  • early adulthood.
  • middle adulthood.
  • late adulthood.

What are the 6 stages of development? ›

But whatever may come in this world, human growth and development will have six stages which are as follows:
  • Fetus.
  • Infancy.
  • Toddler years.
  • Childhood.
  • Adolescence.
  • Adulthood.

What are the first stages of early pregnancy? ›

For a lot of people, the first sign of pregnancy is a missed period. Most pregnancy tests will be positive by the time you've missed your period. Other early pregnancy symptoms include feeling tired, feeling bloated, peeing more than usual, mood swings, nausea, and tender or swollen breasts.

What happens in the 3 stage of pregnancy? ›

During the third trimester, your fetus continues to grow in size and weight. The lungs are still maturing, and the fetus begins to position itself head down. By the end of the third trimester, the fetus is about 19 to 21 inches long and weighs, on average, 6 to 9 pounds.

What are the 4 P's of pregnancy? ›

These components are grouped into 4Ps: power, which refers to uterine contractions and maternal pushing efforts; passage, which refers to the maternal pelvis that the baby passes through during labor; passenger, which refers to the fetus and placenta; and psyche, which refers to the client's psychological status during ...

What weeks are you least likely to miscarry? ›

More than 80% of miscarriages occur within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. After 12 weeks, the rate decreases rapidly (Dante et al, 2013; Houry and Salhy, 2014).

How soon do you start showing? ›

You'll likely notice the first signs of a bump early in the second trimester, between weeks 12 and 16. You might start showing closer to 12 weeks if you are a person of lower weight with a smaller midsection, and closer to 16 weeks if you're a person with more weight.

What can accidentally cause a miscarriage? ›

Some health conditions can cause a miscarriage

Certain types of uterine infections and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can also play a role. Problems with the uterus or cervix such as fibroids and cervical insufficiency, which is when the cervix dilates too soon during pregnancy, can also lead to miscarriage.

Which trimester is high risk of miscarriage? ›

Most miscarriages happen in the first trimester before the 12th week of pregnancy. Miscarriage in the second trimester (between 13 and 19 weeks) happens in 1 to 5 in 100 (1 to 5 percent) pregnancies. As many as half of all pregnancies may end in miscarriage.

When does a baby have a brain? ›

The fetal brain begins to develop during the third week of gestation. Neural progenitor cells begin to divide and differentiate into neurons and glia, the two cell types that form the basis of the nervous system. By the ninth week, the brain appears as a small, smooth structure.

What does an 8 week fetus look like? ›

Your Baby's Development at 8 Weeks

At 8 weeks, a baby is typically between 1/2 and 3/4 inch long (1.5 to 2 centimeters),1 about the size and shape of kidney bean. Some parents even nickname their baby "the little bean" around this time, especially after catching a glimpse of the baby on an early ultrasound.

What does a 5 week ultrasound look like? ›

At this stage, the only things you'll likely see are the yolk sac and the gestational sac. It's possible that the sonographer might be able to point out the embryo, which at this stage is likely a tiny white curled object. Surrounding the embryo is the yolk sac, which will look like a small white circle.

What is 3 months pregnant in weeks? ›

What Happens at 3 Months of Pregnancy? 12 Weeks Pregnant.

How big is the fetus at 3 months? ›

How Big Is Your Baby When You're 3 Months Pregnant? At the start of this month your baby will be about ½ an inch long, and by the end of this month she'll be almost 2 inches long and weigh about ½ an ounce.

How big is a 4 week old fetus? ›

Your baby, or embryo, is about 2mm long (about the size of a poppy seed) and growing rapidly in your womb. It's protected by an amniotic sac, which is filled with cushioning fluid, and attached to a tiny yolk sac that provides all the nourishment it needs.

How big is a 5 week old fetus? ›

Your baby's nervous system is already developing, and the foundations for its major organs are in place. At this stage, the embryo is around 2mm long.

What a fetus looks like at 4 weeks? ›

At 4 weeks pregnant, baby is smaller than a poppy seed—practically microscopic. Baby is now known as a blastocyst, a teeny ball of cells, and is busy settling into their new home (your uterus), prepping for all the crucial development that will happen over the next six weeks.

What is week 1 of pregnancy? ›

Your weeks of pregnancy are dated from the first day of your last period. This means that in the first 2 weeks or so, you are not actually pregnant – your body is preparing for ovulation (releasing an egg from one of your ovaries) as usual. Your "getting pregnant" timeline is: day 1: the first day of your period.

What happens in week 1 and 2 of pregnancy? ›

Gearing up to ovulate

But in weeks 1 and 2 of pregnancy — the week of and immediately following your last menstrual period — your body is working hard to gear up for the event that paves the way for baby: the big O, or ovulation.

Can you show at 4 weeks pregnant? ›

4 weeks pregnant belly

You probably still won't look pregnant, so the cat's not quite out of the bag yet! Most first-time pregnancies don't show until around week 12. If you've had previous pregnancies you may show earlier as a result of stretching of the muscles in your uterus and belly.

What are the 4 stages of embryonic development? ›

The correct sequence in development is Fertilization → Zygote → Cleavage → Morula → Blastula → Gastrula.

What are 3 stages of prenatal development and characteristics of each? ›

Normal prenatal development lasts about 38 weeks and is divided into three stages: germinal, embryonic, and fetal. During these three stages of gestation, the original single-celled zygote develops into an embryo and then fetus [1, 2].

What are the 5 stages of birth? ›

The stages of labor and delivery
  • How long does giving birth take?
  • First stage of labor.
  • Phase 1: Early labor.
  • Phase 2: Active labor.
  • Phase 3: Transition.
  • Second stage: Pushing.
  • Third stage: Delivering the placenta.
  • What happens after you give birth.

What are the 6 phases of development? ›

Our new Thrive philosophy is born from six stages of human development: social-emotional, intellectual, moral, psychological, physical, and spiritual.

What are the 6 steps of fertilization? ›

In overview, fertilization can be described as the following steps:
  • Sperm Capacitation. ...
  • Sperm-Zona Pellucida Binding. ...
  • The Acrosome Reaction. ...
  • Penetration of the Zona Pellucida. ...
  • Sperm-Oocyte Binding. ...
  • Egg Activation and the Cortical Reaction. ...
  • The Zona Reaction. ...
  • Post-fertilization Events.
Apr 1, 2000

What months are the embryonic stage? ›

After conception, your baby begins a period of dramatic change known as the embryonic stage. This stage runs from the 5th through the 10th week of pregnancy.

What are the 3 stages of early development? ›

Infancy (neonate and up to one year age) Toddler ( one to five years of age) Childhood (three to eleven years old) - early childhood is from three to eight years old, and middle childhood is from nine to eleven years old.

What happens during Stage Three of pregnancy? ›

But a lot is still happening. During the third stage of labor, you will deliver the placenta. How long it lasts: The placenta is typically delivered in 30 minutes, but the process can last as long as an hour.

What is the 5th stage of pregnancy? ›

The fifth week of pregnancy marks the start of the embryonic period. This is when baby's body systems and structures begin to form, such as the heart, brain, and spinal cord. Your baby's heart beats at a steady rate now, though it may not be detected by ultrasound for another 1 or 2 weeks.

What is the 1 stage of birth? ›

1st stage of labour. During the 1st stage of labour, contractions make your cervix gradually open (dilate). This is usually the longest stage of labour. At the start of labour, your cervix starts to soften so it can open.


1. 3 Month Baby Activities | 3 Month Baby Milestones | Baby Development | Baby Development Stages
(Baby Aadvi Vlog)
2. Inside Pregnancy: Weeks 1-9 | BabyCenter
3. Stages of pregnancy – how your baby develops
(Bupa Health UK)
4. Fetal Development Week by Week Overview
(Scientist Cindy)
5. Conception To Birth Fetal Development | Week By Week Fetal Development | Fetal Growth Month By Month
6. Building a baby: The first two weeks
(nature video)
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