What to Expect When You Are 13 Weeks Pregnant

You’ve reached the start of your second trimester! Congratulations on making it through the first 13 weeks. While you likely still feel pregnant, the worst of the first trimester symptoms should start improving. At 13 weeks pregnant, your baby is growing quickly and your body is going through many changes as well.

This article provides a complete guide on what to expect when you are 13 weeks pregnant. We will cover common symptoms, baby development, tips for a healthy pregnancy, and more.

Key Takeaways When 13 Weeks Pregnant

  • Your energy levels and appetite should start improving as first trimester fatigue and morning sickness symptoms decrease.
  • The baby is about 3 inches long and starting to move around more. Their fingers and toes are well-defined.
  • Your uterus is now the size of a grapefruit and starting to expand above your pelvic bone.
  • Pregnancy hormones can cause acne breakouts, skin changes, constipation, and mood swings.
  • Staying active, eating nutritious foods, practicing self-care, and attending prenatal checkups helps ensure a healthy second trimester.
  • Your risk of miscarriage drops significantly after 13 weeks.
  • Some women may start showing a small baby bump by 13 weeks. Maternity clothes can help with fit and comfort.

Common Symptoms at 13 Weeks Pregnant

The second trimester often brings relief from some of the most unpleasant first trimester symptoms. Here are some common symptoms you may experience when 13 weeks pregnant:

Improved Energy Levels

As first trimester fatigue starts to wane, your energy levels will likely improve significantly during week 13. Take advantage of this boost by being more active. Light exercise can help you stay healthy and feel your best.

Decreased Nausea

Morning sickness and nausea should begin subsiding around week 13. Eat small, frequent meals and stay hydrated to help relieve any lingering queasiness. Contact your doctor if vomiting is still frequent.

Increased Appetite

Along with more energy, your appetite may return during your 13th week. Eat a balanced diet with plenty of vegetables, proteins, whole grains, and fresh fruit. Stay hydrated and take your prenatal vitamin daily.

Bloating and Gas

Hormone changes can slow your digestive system, leading to bloating and gas. Stay active, drink fluids, and avoid overly processed foods. Call your doctor if symptoms don’t improve.


Changing hormone levels can sometimes trigger headaches. Drink plenty of water, rest, and use cold compresses. Check with your doctor before taking any medications.


Some women feel lightheaded or dizzy in the second trimester. Move slowly, stay cool, and eat frequent small snacks. Notify your doctor if symptoms persist.


Progesterone relaxes muscles and slows digestion, often causing constipation. Drink lots of fluids, eat high-fiber foods, exercise regularly, and ask your doctor about safe laxatives if needed.


Hormone changes and uterine growth can cause heartburn in week 13. Avoid spicy and acidic foods, eat small meals, don’t lie down after eating, and talk to your doctor about taking antacids.

Increased Vaginal Discharge

More vaginal discharge is common as increased blood flow stimulates mucus production. Use panty liners and avoid douches, perfumes, and irritants. Contact your doctor if discharge smells abnormal.

Breast Changes

Rising hormone levels lead to larger, more tender breasts by week 13. Wear a supportive bra, use heating pads or ice packs, and avoid caffeine to help minimize breast soreness.

Skin Changes

Pregnancy hormones can cause acne breakouts, dry skin, or darkening areolas. Use oil-free moisturizer and sunscreen when outdoors. Check with your doctor before using acne medications.

Mood Swings

Shifting hormone levels, fatigue, and pregnancy discomforts can trigger mood swings like heightened emotions or irritability in your 13th week. Get plenty of rest and support. Communicate with loved ones about what you’re experiencing.


Some mild abdominal cramping and pelvic discomfort is normal as your uterus grows. But call your doctor about severe cramps, sharp pain, or cramps with bleeding, which could indicate problems.

Stay in touch with your doctor about any unusual or concerning symptoms you experience so they can provide helpful solutions and guidance.

13 Weeks Pregnant Belly and Ultrasound

As you near the end of your first trimester, your baby bump will likely start becoming more noticeable during week 13. Here’s what to expect with your growing belly and developing baby:

Belly Size

Your uterus is now about the size of a grapefruit and growing up out of your pelvic cavity. This lets your abdomen expand outward. Some women start showing a small bump around 13 weeks. Don’t worry if you’re not showing much yet. Bump size varies greatly.

Ultrasound View

The baby is around 3 inches long from crown to rump. They can move their arms and legs but don’t have much room yet in your still-small uterus. Your doctor can see their body parts more clearly on ultrasound.

Baby Position

Your baby is still able to move around freely within your uterus. Their position can change frequently. It’s too early for them to settle into a head down position.


A Doppler fetal monitor can detect the baby’s heartbeat, which now beats about 150 times a minute. Your prenatal checkups will include checking the heart rate.

Baby Movement

You probably won’t feel fetal movement this early, even though your baby is starting to flex and test out their muscles. But some mothers notice first flutters by 13 or 14 weeks with subsequent pregnancies.

Reach out to your healthcare provider about scheduling an ultrasound, if you haven’t had one yet. Seeing your developing baby brings excitement and can provide reassurance that all is progressing normally.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Baby Development and Milestones

Now nearing the end of your first trimester, your baby is developing rapidly each day. Here are some of the major changes happening with your baby when you are 13 weeks pregnant:

Size and Weight

Your baby is approximately 3 inches long from crown to rump and weighs just over 1 ounce, about the size of a pea pod. Their legs are nearly as long as their head is round.


All of your baby’s vital organs are formed, in place, and starting to function. The kidneys produce urine, the liver makes bile, and the circulatory system transports blood. The arms, legs, hands, and feet are well-defined. Fingers and toes are visible with nails beginning to form. Facial features continue developing.


Tiny arm and leg movements are strengthening muscles in preparation for more coordinated movements in the coming weeks. The placenta provides nourishment enabling your baby to move around more.

Bones and Joints

Bones are forming from flexible cartilage starting with the long bones like the thigh and shin bones. Joints are developing in the hips, knees, shoulders, and elbows. The skull and facial bones remain soft and flexible to ease the birth process.

Sex Organs

External sex organs are forming. At 13 weeks, doctors can often distinguish girls from boys during an ultrasound, but wait until your next scan for confirmation.

Swallowing and Senses

Your baby can swallow small amounts of amniotic fluid which helps digestive system development. Touch receptors are emerging enabling them to sense stimuli. The eyes and ears continue maturing.

Brain Activity

Brain waves can be detected with an EEG machine signifying increased cognitive function and neurological development. Your baby will soon start dreaming.

Your baby is actively developing every week as your due date nears. Stay focused on healthy habits like eating well, resting, and taking your prenatal vitamins to fuel their growth.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

Maintaining healthy pregnancy habits helps you feel your best during your second trimester and benefits your growing baby. Here are some tips for a healthy 13 weeks pregnant:

Stay Hydrated

Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily. Carry a reusable bottle as a reminder. Proper hydration prevents dehydration, urinary tract infections, and excessive swelling.

Take Your Vitamins

Take your prenatal vitamin with folic acid every day. Ask your doctor about additional supplements you may need like iron, calcium, or vitamin D.

Eat Nutritious Foods

Follow a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, low-fat dairy, and healthy fats. Boost protein intake to support your baby’s growth.

Be Active

Aim for 20 to 30 minutes of light exercise most days. Walking, swimming, yoga, and Kegel exercises are great pregnancy-safe options that boost circulation and muscle strength.

Manage Stress

Make time to relax and do activities you enjoy. Try prenatal yoga, meditation, journaling, or meeting up with friends. Getting adequate sleep also helps reduce stress.

Avoid Toxins

Steer clear of alcohol, smoking, secondhand smoke, and recreational drugs, which can severely impact your baby’s development. Limit caffeine to 200mg per day.

Get Prenatal Care

Have regular checkups with your healthcare provider for monitoring, screening tests, nutrition guidance, and pregnancy education. Address any concerns right away.

Focusing on healthy habits makes a big difference for your comfort and energy levels during pregnancy. And it gives your growing baby the best start possible.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Things to Do

Making preparations and staying organized can help you feel ready for the changes ahead during your 13th week. Here are some recommended things to do when 13 weeks pregnant:

Schedule Ultrasound

If you haven’t already, schedule your 13 week ultrasound to see your baby in detail and verify due date accuracy. Bring your partner or loved ones to share the experience!

Research Prenatal Classes

Look into prenatal classes on childbirth preparation, breastfeeding, and newborn care offered in your area. Register early to secure a spot. Many are free.

Discuss Genetic Screening

Talk to your doctor about recommended genetic screening tests like cell-free DNA screening and diagnostic testing based on your age and risk factors.

Look into Doulas

Research the benefits of hiring a doula for added emotional, physical, and educational support through pregnancy, labor, and postpartum. Interview potential candidates.

Tour Birth Locations

Take hospital or birthing center tours to familiarize yourself with facilities and help decide where to deliver. Consider distance, amenities, policies, costs, and doctor privileges.

Set Up Registries

Create registries on websites like Amazon, Target, and BuyBuyBaby to start stocking up on essential baby gear and supplies. Add items as you research products.

Download Apps

Check out pregnancy apps like The Bump, What to Expect, and Ovia Parenting to track your baby’s growth, access tips, and connect with other expecting mothers.

Use this time to learn more about pregnancy, childbirth options, and newborn care. Planning ahead helps ease worries and allows you to focus on enjoying your pregnancy journey.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Potential Complications

While most women have healthy pregnancies, it’s important to know potential complications and contact your doctor promptly about any concerning symptoms:


The risk of miscarriage drops considerably after reaching 13 weeks. But rectal bleeding, cramping, or loss of pregnancy symptoms can indicate miscarriage, though not always. Call your healthcare provider right away.

Ectopic Pregnancy

Sharp abdominal or pelvic pain on one side along with light vaginal bleeding or dizziness could mean an ectopic pregnancy. This requires emergency treatment, so call 911 or your doctor immediately.


While rare this early, preeclampsia causes high blood pressure and other complications. If you develop severe headaches, vision changes, excessive swelling, or upper abdominal pain see your doctor promptly.

Placental Problems

Issues with the placenta like low-lying placenta previa or placental abruption causes bleeding and pain. Call your doctor about any bleeding episodes. Ultrasounds help diagnose placental problems.

Gestational Diabetes

Some women develop this pregnancy-related blood sugar disorder. Symptoms include frequent urination, thirst, fatigue, and blurred vision. Early screening and management are important. Tell your doctor about symptoms.

Contact your medical team at the first sign of anything abnormal like bleeding, fluid leakage, lack of fetal movement, cramping, dizziness, or other concerns. Prompt treatment is essential for the health of you and your baby.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Lifestyle Adjustments

Making certain lifestyle adjustments during your second trimester helps you stay comfortable as your belly grows. Here are some tips for week 13:

Get More Rest

Take daily breaks to rest your feet and nap if tired. Don’t overexert yourself. Listen to your body’s cues. Prioritize sleep by going to bed earlier.

Stay Cool and Comfortable

Dress in lightweight layers you can shed if warm. Drink cold beverages. Use a fan, air conditioner, or cooling products to prevent overheating.

Wear Supportive Bras

Opt for soft, wire-free bras without tight elastic that provide comfort as your breasts enlarge. Get professionally fitted. Replace worn-out bras.

Consider Maternity Clothes

Transition to maternity wear designed for your changing shape. Stretchy pants, dresses, and tops provide a better fit and accommodate your growing belly.

Lift Properly

Bend at the knees, hold objects close, and avoid heavy lifting to reduce strain on your back and abdomen. Don’t overdo it. Ask for help when needed.

Choose Better Footwear

Wear supportive shoes with cushioned soles. Consider orthotics. Avoid heels and tight shoes that cause discomfort or imbalance.

Use common sense when it comes to activity and make smart wardrobe adjustments during your 13th week to help you feel your best.

13 Weeks Pregnant – Intimacy and Relationships

With nausea fading and energy rebounding, intimacy with your partner may appeal to you more during your second trimester. Here’s some advice for this stage:

Boost Libido

Increased blood flow and hormone surges can heighten arousal and desire. Don’t worry if your sex drive seems higher or lower than normal. Embrace what feels right.

Enjoy Sex Safely

Sex doesn’t harm the baby. But if you experience bleeding, pain, or preterm labor signs during sex, talk to your healthcare provider. Try different positions to maximize comfort.

Address Insecurities

Body confidence may waiver with weight gain and changing shape. Communicate openly with your partner about any discomfort or uncertainty you feel. Focus on the positive.

Stay Connected

Make couple time to talk, cuddle, give massages, and reinforce intimacy. Share your excitement, fears, and experiences with each other.

Try Alternative Intimacy

If intercourse is uncomfortable, explore other sensual activities like kissing, touching, spooning, and mutual masturbation to foster closeness.

Remember intimacy encompasses more than just sex. Nurture physical and emotional affection with your partner through this transition in your relationship.

13 Weeks Pregnant – FAQs

Having questions during your pregnancy is completely normal. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about week 13:

Is it safe to announce my pregnancy now?

The risk of miscarriage drops significantly after 13 weeks. Announcing your news to family and friends is less stressful for many women at this point. But it’s a personal choice based on your comfort level.

How much weight should I gain at 13 weeks?

Normal weight gain is about 1 to 4 pounds during your first trimester. Your weekly gain will increase slightly to about .5 pound moving forward. Focus on eating healthy rather than obsessing over numbers.

What blood tests are done at 13 weeks?

Your doctor may recommend cell-free DNA screening, chorionic villus sampling, maternal serum screening, or other diagnostic tests at this stage based on your age, health, and risk factors. Talk to your provider about recommended prenatal screening.

Can I use hair dye when 13 weeks pregnant?

While hair dyes are absorbed only minimally into the bloodstream, many doctors recommend waiting until after pregnancy for dyeing or highlights as a precaution. Use alternatives like conditioners or temporary coloring sprays for a subtle change.

When will I feel the baby move at 13 weeks?

Most women don’t feel fetal movement until 16 to 22 weeks with their first pregnancy. But some notice flutters sooner, especially with second or subsequent pregnancies as the uterus is more pliable.

Discuss any worries that come up with your medical provider and bring a list of questions to every prenatal appointment. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarifications.

13 Weeks Pregnant – The Takeaway

When you reach 13 weeks pregnant, you’ve made it through the first trimester! While not completely comfortable yet, many bothersome symptoms should start decreasing as your body adapts and your baby’s major organ development completes.

Focus on maintaining healthy habits like nutritious eating, light exercise, doctor checkups, and taking it easier when possible. This lays the groundwork for a smoother second trimester and healthier pregnancy overall.

Stick to your self-care regimen. Communicate concerns quickly. And enjoy the excitement of watching your belly grow and feeling your baby move soon. The second trimester brings new joys and milestones as your due date draws nearer!