Being pregnant is one of the best experiences of life for every women. It’s exciting but it also has its challenges. Once of such is not noticing the bulging belly.
If your 4 months pregnancy isn’t showing, here’s why:
Your pregnancy belly may not be showing in 4 months if you’re a first-time mum. The muscles in the uterus and belly haven’t stretched. Age also influences when your belly starts showing — older mums tend to show bigger belly than young mums.
From the moment you find yourself expecting a child, time suddenly seems to expand; days never pass, the weeks that separate from the next visit or the next ultrasound seem very long.
What will the baby be like? Who will look like? Will everything be fine? What will the birth be like?
These are all questions for which we know that we have to wait for months, but one above all is the question concerning which an immediate change is expected: the Belly.
There are many signs of pregnancy like big skin, shining strands of hair, and getting fat. It’s only after the belly begins to show that the people around you can notice you’re pregnant — and you can be certain there’s a baby right there.
The growth of the baby bump in pregnancy is certainly the most apparent aspect of this surprising phase of an expectant mother’s life.
The body changes because it prepares to welcome the fetus which, from a microscopic point of the first weeks, will become your splendid child.
This is a significant but gradual transformation, which takes place over the 9-month waiting period and which, in reality, does not only concern the abdomen but a series of organs that will gradually adapt to the new condition.
It’s good to know that the size of the baby bump can vary a lot from woman to woman: it will depend on its constitution, the shape of the pelvis but also on the lifestyles and, clearly, on the fact that it is a single or twin pregnancy.
Now the fact is, we are all different, and as such, there is no specific moment in pregnancy when the belly necessarily has to appear. While some women complain that at 4 months, the gut has barely grown and that nobody notices its sweet state, others may wear a pregnancy belly... since the test is positive!
This is true especially with the second and subsequent babies when the abdominal muscles are looser, the uterus relaxes earlier, and the gut adopts the typical rounded shape even when the baby is a few millimeters.
On the other hand, the pregnancy belly takes longer to notice when the pregnant woman is overweight – in reality, the difficult thing is to distinguish how much of the extra weight truly corresponds to the baby.
A pregnant woman with obesity, however, should not lose weight during pregnancy, although she does gain fewer pounds than someone who becomes pregnant at her proper weight.
However, Not all women, when they are expecting a baby, want their stomach to be visible as quickly as possible, in fact, in some cases, everything is done so that nobody is aware of their condition.
The causes are varied; there may be problems at work – in many jobs, it is still a problem to tell your boss that you are expecting a child — there may be family misunderstandings, perhaps with parents, if they are very young, or with a partner in case of unplanned pregnancies.
Other women, on the other hand, are looking forward to a big baby bump, an accurate indication of their status as a future mother. But when will you see the Belly?
When does the belly begin to appear?
Once you become aware that you are pregnant, the first thing you want to know is: “When will my pregnancy become visible?”
If you ask your doctor about this matter, all he will say is that there is no certainty.
The bump can be visible early in some people and soon after in others.
In some nursing mum, it is not visible even when they are in their second trimester. Ideally, it should start showing after going through your twelfth week.
The amniotic fluid also increases in this period, increasing the Belly. So let’s try to understand when you will have a belly during pregnancy and the factors that influence a premature or late bump.
As hinted earlier, the stage at which pregnancy begins to show varies from woman to woman and from pregnancy to pregnancy.
In the meantime, it should be pointed out that in the case of a second (or more) pregnancy the Belly tends to spring up ahead of the first since the woman’s uterus has already been brought to maximum expansion during the previous experience and therefore the musculature tends to offer less resistance to expansion.
In general, for a first-time baby, the Belly will not be visible during the first quarter and will start to appear around the fourth month and then become decidedly evident in the fifth month when the physical conformation of the child begins to be developed.
Already during the first quarter, however, you may experience problems wearing the tightest clothes, this is because if you were used to pulling your Belly in before to wear that pair of tight-fitting jeans, you are no longer able to do so.
For the second pregnancies, however, the Belly may already be visible around the beginning of the third month.
How to know when it is your turn?
While typically first-time pregnant women say that the tummy begins to be noticed between the 12th and 18th week, some factors can influence it to appear sooner or later.
For example, if you are younger, it will take longer than if you have already passed the 35.
If you are small or very thin, the Belly (any weight gain, actually) will be noticed before.
On the other hand, you can also look at when the pregnancy began to be noticed in your mother or your sisters since genetics also play an important role.
If you have suffered from the first moment symptoms such as gas, constipation or swelling, or if you expect more than one baby, surely you would not be reading this note, because the Belly tends to appear earlier.
When will others notice my belly?
Surely, the expectant mother will notice it sooner than anyone else, but gradually the pregnancy proceeds, the Belly will be more and more evident even to those around you.
In the cold seasons, it is easier to hide a belly with heavy clothing, while in spring and summer beautiful pineapples are starting to appear, now impossible to hide under a sweater.
Today we tend to make even garments that highlight the shapes of pregnant women so that they can proudly carry their bump around.
However, towards the end of pregnancy the child should place himself in the cephalic position and begin to descend towards the cervix, thus occupying less space inside the Belly; from this moment on, the Belly could be reduced becoming slightly smaller.
Factors That Determine When Your Baby Bump Will Begin to Show
There are factors that determine when a pregnant woman’s baby bump begins to enlarge and becomes visible to everyone. The factors are listed below:
1). The age of the expectant mother: A pregnant mother’s age is one of the most significant factors to determine when it starts to show.
The Tommy starts showing early in older mothers than in young mothers. This is because of the muscles within the abdomen is very strong in young mothers.
2). First pregnancy: When you are pregnant for the first time, your Belly may show a little later. For subsequent pregnancies, it could be seen soon.
The reason is that the band (a band made of fibrous tissue) is already stretched during the period of your first pregnancy.
Thus, it will be more elastic during subsequent pregnancies. Furthermore, the uterus also becomes larger as it has already been lengthened during the first pregnancy.
3). Genetic factors: If the prospective mother has a family history of relatives showing prominence at the beginning or during pregnancy, she may also follow the same pattern.
4). The mother’s weight: If the pregnant woman is overweight and has extra fat around the abdomen, her Belly may be visible a few weeks later than a future mother who has a normal weight.
Belly fat around the abdomen hides the bulge. However, around 18 weeks of gestation become visible when the baby starts to grow large.
5). Multiple pregnancies: It is quite obvious for a pregnant lady or woman with twins or more to have everything related to pregnancy earlier than normal. It requires more space in the uterus to accommodate more children than a singleton.
Therefore, an aspiring mother who has more babies in her lap starts to show a big belly in the first trimester itself.
6). The expectant mother’s body constitution: A woman’s body is also a determining factor in determining when a baby bump will start to show. A pregnant woman who is quite tall and well built will begin to show 3-4 weeks later, a woman who is short and thin.
7). Position of the uterus: In women with a backdated uterus (uterus tilted towards the back of the hip), a baby bump appears later than women with a normal uterus.
Similarly, women with an anteverted uterus (uterus tilted forward) may appear from the first trimester compared to women with a normal uterus.
8). Swelling due to gas or constipation: A gaseous stomach (common during pregnancy) can cause the expansion of the Belly which can sometimes be misinterpreted as a belly.
9). Incorrect expiration date: You’re pregnant for the second time, have you been through the fourteenth and fifteenth week and your baby bump hasn’t been seen yet?
Check with a healthcare provider if the correct expiration date has been given. An incorrect expiration date could confuse as one might think that the Belly would have appeared too early or too late.
10). Size of the unborn child: In most cases, the size of the baby influences an early or late baby bump. If the baby is small, the baby bump can be seen later than usual and, in the case of a large baby, it may show up early.
11). Water retention: Some women, together with hands, legs, and face, can hold water even in the lower Belly. This could make your Belly look big.
Does bigger belly signify better health for a pregnant woman?
Recently, photos of Instagram models have come to light announcing their pregnancies without being noticed at all, and this makes them subject to criticism that says it is not “healthy” or “normal” to show marked abdominals at 20 weeks.
However, just a strong musculature in the abdomen can cause the Belly to take notice, which does not mean that the baby isn’t developing well.
If the uterus has room to expand backward or sideways, a pregnant woman can even reach the third trimester without the belly growing too much. What is important is that you gain the right weight.
Truly, what guarantees a healthy unborn child has nothing to do with a bulging belly – but the general well being of the mom.
Why does my belly sometimes become hard during pregnancy?
A ubiquitous question among mothers waiting for a child is: “Why does my belly become hard like a stone?”; “It’s normal?”; “Should I worry?”; “It’s dangerous?”; “It hurts?”; “Why to me?.”
But be quiet! The Belly lasts during pregnancy, it is entirely normal!
The “fault” is uterine contractions that can occur at any stage of gestation. Here are some causes:
In the first months of pregnancy, the Belly can become hard because of the changes generated by the pregnancy itself. The uterus is experiencing something new; it has never had anything inside it and tries in every way to expel it.
If you think about it, all the organs of our body are ready to expel their contents: the bladder expels urine, the heart expels blood and the uterus, when you are pregnant, tries by all means to expel the embryo.
But don’t panic! Thanks to progesterone, the hormone responsible for the progression of pregnancy, the uterus does not reach its goal.
In the struggle between the uterus and the embryo, if the uterus “wins” you will notice substantial losses of blood.
It’s advisable to go to the doctor to check that all is well. If the first quarter contractions are not painful, continuous, or accompanied by blood loss, there is no need to worry. From the second quarter onwards we begin the famous contractions of “Braxton Hicks” (false contractions).
As the pregnancy progresses, the uterus extends to prepare for delivery. You may feel small pains in the groin or pubic area.
Remember that every woman is different, so some will warn them, others will not. Consult your doctor if contractions are frequent or if there is bleeding. There may be a premature birth.
At the end of pregnancy, the Braxton Hicks contractions become more frequent, and one of the characteristics is that the maternal womb becomes hard.
These contractions are irregular in intensity and frequency. They are not painful, but they can be annoying.
If you have a stomach that lasts for many hours, if the contractions are painful and do not go away after taking a hot bath or resting, you may be close to giving birth!
What to do when the belly becomes hard during pregnancy?
- Drink a lot of water
- Change your sleeping posture
- Take a hot shower
- Do some recreational activity
- Avoid stressful situations
Pregnancy is a critical stage in any woman’s life. It comes with a great dose of anxiety and several other factors that will most likely alter your personality.
This is not always healthy.
If you feel so distressed that you can no longer rejoice in your pregnancy, do not hesitate to consult a psychotherapist who can help you to restore a picture of yourself more satisfying than the one you send back to others.