3 Weeks Pregnant: What To Expect?

Pregnancy is not usually confirmed until the end of week 3. So, this week, you may or may not get an idea that you are pregnant. So what really is happening in this week in the uterus? Or what has happened since week 1? And how are the weeks calculated? At what point does week 1 begin? We will be looking for the answers to these questions and much more in this 3 weeks pregnant article… so let us begin… ?

How is Pregnancy Calculated?

An exact date of conception (meeting of an egg and a sperm resulting in fertilization) is very hard to determine. Your dating scan and prenatal visit are yet weeks ahead, so try DIY.

Telling the exact time of ovulation unless one has chosen to go for In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) requires elaborate testing of hormones. You only know the fertility window or day using OTKs.

After ovulation, sperms can be either present already or come after. Whatever happens, fertilization occurs within 24 hours after the release of the egg.

Everything near ovulation and conception has a specific time limit. Pinpointing the time is not possible at the mid-cycle stages.

How Do Doctors Calculate Pregnancy?

Doctor dates pregnancy stage, based on the last menstrual period (LMP). The first day of the last menstrual period is considered to be the day 1 of pregnancy.

In pregnancy, this date is used to calculate an approximate gestational age of the fetus. Due date estimation is more accurate considering the last menstrual period as week 1.

Week 3 is the stage after ovulation and conception have been successful. Fertilized egg begins dividing and moving towards uterus in week 3.

By the end of week 3, pregnancy detection is possible. That is when the placenta starts making hCG, the pregnancy test hormone. Chances of miscalculation of pregnancy stage are still high.

Pregnancy calculators are available to calculate the approximate date of conception and fertility period based on the first day of menstruation and average cycle length.

3 Weeks Pregnant
3 Weeks Pregnant

How Is Your Baby At 3 Weeks Pregnant Stage?

Week 3 is just the beginning of actual pregnancy. Your baby is still the size of a pinhead.

Here is what is going inside you:

1) Successful fertilization occurs when the sperm reaches the egg within 12-24 hours after ovulation.

2) The sperm travels towards the fallopian tube where the egg is present. As soon as a sperm cell enters the egg cell, a barrier is created to prevent the entry of other sperm cells.

3) It takes 24 hours for the fusion of egg and sperm cells after which the single cell formed is called a Zygote.

4) The zygote starts dividing into 2, 4, 8 and so on cells. This mass of cells starts moving towards the uterus while undergoing rapid division.

5) After the first division, the zygote is termed as a blastomere. When the blastomere reaches a 16 cell stage, it is called as Morula. After Morula, the stage called Blastocyst arrives. By the end of this week, the blastocyst will reach the inner lining of the uterus.

6) The blastocyst will embed in the uterine wall; by the process – Implantation. After the egg is embedded into the lining, baby connects to your circulation, for food and excretion. 

7) Your baby embryo is still to shift to placental nutrition. Right now the yolk sac nutrients of his or her egg have started to finish.

8) Also, the amniotic fluid will fill up in the amniotic sac that is being formed. This fluid protects and cushions the baby throughout the pregnancy.

9) The sexual status of the embryo has already been decided. The sexual status depends on the sex chromosomes (packaged DNA molecules) present. Females have two X chromosomes whereas males have one X and one Y chromosome. You can’t find out the gender of the baby at 3 weeks for more 11 weeks from now.

The two chromosomal sets (sex chromosome + other chromosomes) present in an embryo come from the two parents each. The sex chromosome that is present in the egg is always an X chromosome. The sex chromosome present in the sperm that fertilizes the egg can be an X or a Y chromosome.

What Happens In 3 Weeks Pregnant With Multiples?

1) If during ovulation, two eggs are released instead of one, and if both the eggs get fertilized and there is successful implantation for both then the resulting babies would be fraternal twins.

2) In case the fertilized egg splits into two embryos, the resulting babies would be identical twins. The time of split will decide the number of placentae and amniotic sac.

3) If the split has occurred within three days after the formation of the zygote, then each twin – dichorionic diamniotic, will develop its own placenta and amniotic sac.

4) In the event, the split occurs after the formation of the blastocyst, the twins – monochorionic diamniotic, will share the placenta but will have different amniotic sacs.

5) If the split occurs after day 9 of fertilization, the twins – monochorionic monoamniotic, will share both the placenta and the amniotic sac.


Your Body At 3 Weeks Pregnant

Week 3 is too early to feel pregnant. You can enjoy your secret for the next few weeks also. Morning sickness is not far away as implantation will cause pregnancy toxicosis.

You are in the two weeks wait, the most panicking phase of pregnancy. From the time of conception until confirming pregnancy most women lose their calm.

Hormonal Changes

In the fallopian tube, the follicle present in the ovary releases an egg. After the release of the egg, a structure called corpus luteum remains in the follicle.

Until a short period after fertilization, corpus luteum continues secreting Progesterone. If you were to have your period, a drop in progesterone levels was the next step.

Progesterone from corpus luteum supports the growth of the embryo for the first nine to ten weeks. Later the placenta takes over production of progesterone completely.

After implantation, the embryo starts producing Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG) hormone. hCG is the hormone that pregnancy tests detect to determine pregnancy. The release of this hormone signals the ovaries to stop releasing eggs and also triggers increased production of estrogen and progesterone.

Increased level of pregnancy hormones prevents the shedding of the inner lining of the uterus or menstruation.

Physical Changes – 3 Weeks Pregnant Belly

There is no way you see any change in your belly size at this stage. Anything that feels like pregnant belly at 3 weeks is bloating alas! Weight gain or any other physical transformation is not noticed.

The only things you can see externally are changes in cervical mucus and implantation bleeding. Intercourse at 3 Weeks is a little cautioned act. Taking rest both physically and mentally is key to getting pregnant fast.

Emotional Changes 3 Weeks Pregnant

As we just read about the two weeks wait, emotional hurly-burly has begun. Homemade pregnancy tests like a salt test or bleach test can be fun lest you dwell on their outcomes. Taking a pregnancy test kit will only bring you anxiety and ruin your sleep.

The earliest stage of pregnancy is most critical for your baby. As women don’t see anything they have been anticipating they tend to overwork their mind. Preimplantation failures lead to most miscarriages. Keep your mind easy and breeze through this period.

3 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms

At 3 weeks pregnant stage, there are hardly any visible symptoms this early. The earliest pregnancy symptoms appear when the amount of hormones becomes very high.

For now, you can see implantation signs and early symptoms of pregnancy before missed period.

Hormone levels reach by this week but not for all women. However, if you are suspecting pregnancy or you are trying for the same, you may look for the following signs and symptoms.

1) Implantation Spotting

If the embryo has already implanted in the uterus, then there might be light spotting. It is known as Implantation Bleeding. However, this usually is observed at the beginning of week 4. Most women confuse it with a period or don’t have it at all. Implantation bleeding is light and brown.

2) Missed period

If you have a shorter menstrual cycle then by the end of this week you may miss your period. After the missed period, you can take a home pregnancy test.

3) Faint Positive Pregnancy Test

At this early stage, even a faint test is a pregnancy sign. A home pregnancy test may not be a sure shot way to confirm pregnancy even though most tests claim 99% accuracy. Levels of hCG hormone may not have risen enough and will give a false negative result. The levels usually double every 2 days so you can check again after 2-3 days and again after a week.

4) Queasiness or Nausea

Nausea is the most common symptom early in pregnancy. The nausea is an effect of rising levels of the hCG hormone. Combined with the hormones is the nasty sensitive nose. Pray that none of your favorite perfumes become a trigger. A reflex action in the brain can retain memory forever. That can trigger nausea even years after pregnancy just by that particular smell.

5) Sensitive Breast and Nipples

The breast changes that you observe before menstruation like sore breasts and darker nipples may become more defined. Just like near period, your girlies undergo a particular change also in early pregnancy stage.

6) Pregnancy Toxicosis

You may experience an aversion to certain foods that you used to enjoy before. The implantation of embryo releases certain factors in the blood. Later the same accentuates to become full-fledged morning sickness.

7) Metallic Dysgusea

Another side effect is a metallic kind of taste in your mouth. It is the result of the different hormones coursing through your body making the taste buds go wild.

8) Heightened Sense Of Smell

A 3-week pregnancy symptom women swear by is the sensitive nasal membrane. Some experience it in the form of congestion. It is due to the increasing levels of estrogen in the body. A sensitive nose leads to an exaggeration of aversions and nausea.

9) Bloating & Twitching Cramps

No! It is not your baby moving. A feeling of pressure in the lower abdominal region without bleeding is normal. It may be due to anything from embryo implantation, thickening uterine wall to increased blood flow in the region.

10) Triphasic BBT

Generally after a rise in BBT after ovulation the body temperature drops near the menstrual period due date. When you conceive there is s second rise in BBT near implantation. It causes a triphasic BBT graph which is not a diagnosis but a common occurrence in pregnancy. Increased level of progesterone in the body causes the rise in basal body temperature.

11) Leukorrhea

Your cervix will release white mucus. Doctors advice to not consider it as a pregnancy sign. For the sake of observing the changes, you can see the white discharge as a symptom.

How To Relieve 3 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms?

1) The metallic taste can be fought by consuming something acidic. This includes lemonade and other citrus juices, food marinated with vinegar, sour candy, etc.

2) Try to stay away from places that may make you feel queasy. Keep your home/room windows open to allow fresh air to come in.

3) You may want to get rid of anything with a strong fragrance like deodorants, room fresheners, etc.

3 Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound 

1) The embryo in this week is too small to be detected in the ultrasound scan. No ultrasound scan happens at 3 weeks.

2) If you’re not able to detect pregnancy or have unusual symptoms like cramps and bleeding, then the doctor may ask for it. The thickness of the uterine lining can be measured using a scan. Pregnancy sustainability depends on the minimum thickness of the uterine wall.

3) The embryo is the size of a pinhead; approximately 0.0019 inches. Gender detection at 3 weeks has low accuracy and can be only through genetic tests.

4) If there are no complications, the first ultrasound of pregnancy is usually done late in the first trimester.

Weight Gain During 3 Weeks Pregnancy

1) Your belly may appear a bit bloated at three weeks pregnant stage, but there will be no actual change other than that.

2) Before you start eating anything and everything that you like, one should know that there is a recommended weight gain chart for every week and every trimester of pregnancy.

3) The chart is not to be followed rigidly but to have an idea of healthy weight gain; healthy for the mom and the baby both.

4) You should switch to a healthy diet as much as you can.

3 Weeks Pregnant: What To Eat?

1) Expecting moms should avoid alcohol consumption.

2) Do not take any medicine not prescribed by the doctor. If you have any doubts regarding some medication, talk to your doctor first.

3) Include all the essential vitamins, especially folic acid, in your diet. It is required for early development of the baby and prevents defects of the neural tube (leading to the formation of the brain and spinal cord) that begins forming very early in pregnancy.

4) Eat a balanced diet that includes carbohydrates and proteins both.

5) Calcium and iron are also essential for the baby’s growth.

3 Weeks Pregnancy Tips: What To Do?

1) You have to take extra care of yourself for the sake of the baby as well as yourself. Avoid having intercourse during pregnancy, wearing tampons, etc. this week.

2) Be aware of all the harmful environmental factors like pesticides on food, air pollution, etc.

3) Remove caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine. Don’t indulge in food binge. You are far off from the stage of eating for two. After ten weeks from now, you will have to increase 300 calories.

4) Inform your dentist of your pregnancy if you go for a checkup in case they want to do an X-ray. X-rays are not usually done in the early stage of pregnancy.

5) You may feel overwhelmed, more so if this was an unplanned pregnancy. Make sure to not overly stress about this and talk about it to a friend, relative, parent or your partner.

If this is your first pregnancy, you are about to enter a new phase in your life. Just like any other stage of life, there will be days on which you will be joyous and days on which you may feel low. And just like in different phases of life, you will get through this with the help of your partner, family, and friends.

Second or third-time moms already know everything is not true. Every pregnancy is different, and we are with you as you take this journey the second time. Whenever you feel like you need help at any point, do not be shy to ask for it.