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5 weeks pregnant

When you are 5 weeks pregnant, symptoms can continue to cause discomfort. There is a rush of development and your baby’s heart is likely to start beating at this stage.

Week by week stages of pregnancy: week 5

In pregnancy week five the embryo is beginning to develop.  Three layers (ectoderm, mesoderm and endoderm) will form which will in turn become all the tissues and organs in the body.  The nervous system, digestive tract, brain and heart will begin to develop.  It is at around five weeks that the heart will beat for the first time.

The embryo is now the size of a sesame seed (3mm) so you will not have a ‘bump’ for a while yet and it is more than likely that no one will notice you are pregnant. However, you may notice the symptoms of pregnancy more at this stage. Pregnancy symptoms at 5 weeks can include:

  • Sore breasts
  • Tiredness
  • Going off certain foods or developing cravings for other. Often coffee becomes disliked
  • A metallic taste in your mouth
  • A need to urinate more often
  • Nausea
  • Sickness

Morning sickness is one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy. It is perfectly normal but sometimes it can be debilitating.  There are plenty of ways to help with morning sickness, read our information on morning sickness.

If you aren’t already doing so, it is recommended you start taking folic acid supplements until you are twelve weeks pregnant. There is good evidence to suggest taking folic acid supplements whilst pregnant – and, where possible, before you conceive – should reduce the risk of your baby being born with neural defects such as spina bifida.

These early weeks are important for the development of your baby. You should be taking care of yourself and being careful about the food and drink you have.  You should try to give up smoking and drinking alcohol.

You embryo will start to develop rapidly after 5-6 weeks of pregnancy. Read more abour your embryo’s journey in week six of pregnancy.

Further help and information

NCT's helpline offers practical and emotional support in all areas of pregnancy, birth and early parenthood: 0300 330 0700. We also offer antenatal courses which are a great way to find out more about birth, labour and life with a new baby.

Join in with NCT on Facebook and Twitter - it's a great way to make new friends and stay in touch with old ones. Or joint our community for new parents on Google+ where you can connect with other parents online who are experiencing similar things.