small belly during pregnancy: normal or not?

are you expecting a baby What great news! Whoever says that they are pregnant says that they have seen many changes in their lives, and first of all, more or less pleasant facts, such as morning sickness, tiredness, your breasts that are growing, urine leakage … but also your growing belly. Often viewed by those around you as the ultimate proof that a woman is pregnant, the “baby bump” is different for every pregnancy. And it’s always good to remember! However, we did it quickly compare our stomach to that of others. And if it seems smaller than average, it can be a cause for concern or, conversely, really good news. The story of the glass half full, in short. We take stock of what a small belly can mean with Laurie Eghissian, clinical psychologist.

Why do some pregnant women suffer from a small belly?

“Oh, but it doesn’t look like you’re pregnant!” You may have heard this phrase before when revealing your pregnancy. And unless the person who told you didn’t necessarily mean the wrong thing, that little tummy can scare you. “If in your family history of pregnancy or in your social circle the image of pregnancy is to have a belly showing, which is a sign of fulfillment, abundance, and good health. A small belly can be perceived as abnormal, that something is wrong.”, explains the psychologist. It’s true that, apart from the ultrasound scans, it’s difficult to know if everything is okay (especially in the early stages of pregnancy, when you can’t yet feel the baby moving in your tummy). It is therefore easy to worry that your child is too small, has a health problem or is not developing properly. Finally, there is also pressure from society and social networks, which show a unique image of the pregnant woman: with an impressive belly. If you don’t, you can also feel ashamed and “guilty that your belly isn’t growing like you see in the magazines” and, of course, suffer from what those around you say.

Pregnant, the benefits of an unobtrusive baby bump

Conversely, for some women, a small belly is a godsend. This is often the case for those who want to keep the secret for as long as possible, be it from their work or family background. “Women who are afraid of gaining weight and changing too much during pregnancy like their unobtrusive tummy,” adds Laurie Eghissian. If you’re worried about stretch marks, a small belly can be comforting. However, remember that the appearance of these marks is also linked to hormones and genetics, so small belly or not, do not hesitate to use an anti-stretch mark treatment to reduce them.

What determines the size of the belly of the future mother?

You will have understood it, there is not a standard size for the expectant mother’s belly, and this is not related to the health of the unborn child. Various factors influence the size and shape of a pregnant woman’s abdomen: her height and weight before pregnancy, her musculature (especially if her core muscles are very developed, because the abdominal muscles can “hold” the tummy for a period of time), the fact that signs of pregnancy (women who are prone to nausea usually gain little weight in early pregnancy), the position of the baby in the stomach or hormones (progesterone can cause abdominal swelling). Finally, it’s common for the baby bump to appear faster on a 2e pregnancy than during the 1stTime.

Peace of mind if you’re worried about a small tummy

If you’re worried about a small tummy, don’t hesitate to talk to your midwife or gynecologist about it. These health professionals can reassure you with tests (ultrasound, uterine measurement, doppler, etc.) and check that everything is fine with the baby. Talk about it with those around you, too, and don’t hesitate to shut the mouths of people who make comments to you and remind them of it Belly size means nothing ! If you feel the need to speak to a specialist, note that maternity wards usually have psychologists available to listen to you during and after pregnancy. Finally, as Laurie Eghissian points out, a massage can be a great way to “own that new belly,” and wearing clothes that flatter your belly can also boost your confidence.

And if you’re still in doubt about how different two expectant mothers’ bellies can be, here’s a fitness instructor’s Instagram post comparing her belly to a friend’s… They’re only 4 weeks apart in their pregnancies!

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