It can be a really exciting moment to be able to announce your pregnancy and show off your bump.
But if you’ve just found out you’re expecting, there may not be much of a bump ‒ if any.
It can take some time.
So when do pregnant women start showing?
Let’s find out.
In this article: 📝
- When do you start showing?
- Why am I showing so early?
- How your bump is measured during your pregnancy
- What factors impact when you start showing in pregnancy?
- Where does your baby bump start to show?
- Reasons for not showing during pregnancy
When do you start showing?
When will I start showing?
Well, it depends (much like many things pregnancy-related).
Your age, weight, height, whether it’s your first pregnancy, and how many babies you’re carrying can all change the answer to when your baby bump starts showing.
At how many weeks do you start showing?
When will I start to show in my first pregnancy?
First-time moms can start showing in pregnancy a little earlier than veteran mamas.
Most of our first-time Peanut mamas said that their baby bumps started showing between 12 and 18 weeks into their pregnancy.
Is it normal to show early in first pregnancy?
Yes, it’s totally normal to show a few weeks earlier with your first pregnancy ‒ this is a new experience for your body, so some things may be different the first time.
When do you start showing second pregnancy?
Your second pregnancy might start showing a bit later than the first time, but again, this is dependent on your body type, how many babies you’re carrying, your age, muscle tone… a whole host of factors!
But a lot of our Peanut mamas noticed their bumps appeared at about 16-20 weeks of pregnancy for their second baby.
When do you start showing with twins?
How many babies you are carrying will also affect how much your uterus needs to stretch and mean that perhaps you show earlier.
Why am I showing so early?
Showing early in pregnancy is not something to worry about ‒ it can be totally normal, and can be due to lots of different reasons.
Generally, most mamas-to-be won’t have a noticeable bump in the first trimester – so it’s normal to wonder if it’s bloating or a baby bump you see.
And any growth in your mid-section during this time could indeed be down to bloating, as baby is still really tiny at this point, so showing early in pregnancy is less baby and more your body doing its thing to accommodate them.
It’s also likely that you’ll notice the changes in your body well before anyone else.
You might notice that you feel “thicker”, that your waistbands are slightly more snug, or maybe you feel like you are showing early in pregnancy after 6-8 weeks.
But other people probably won’t notice any changes until around 12-16 weeks.
This is especially true if this is your first pregnancy because your stomach muscles are usually stronger than if you’ve been pregnant before.
If you have been pregnant before, then it isn’t surprising if you start showing early in pregnancy before your second trimester.
This is because your stomach muscles have been stretched already, and they seem to remember how to go back to being pregnant again.
It’s also possible that you experienced “separated stomach muscles” in your previous pregnancies, known as Diastasis Recti, and it can mean that the tummy muscles pull apart more easily, creating the impression of a bump sooner.
Can you show at 6 weeks?
Yes, you can start showing at 6 weeks ‒ if you have a slimmer frame, are expecting multiple babies, or if it’s your first pregnancy, these can all be factors that cause you to start showing at 6 weeks.
It is not usually common but is a possibility.
Why am I showing at 7 weeks second?
If your 7 weeks pregnant belly’s showing, that’s totally fine, mama!
There is a chance it might not be you showing at 7 weeks ‒ it may be bloating, but it might just be due to your body frame or twins!
Can you start showing at 8 weeks?
Can you start showing as early as 8 weeks?
Yes, it is possible to start showing at 8 weeks, this can happen to mamas-to-be who are on the slimmer side or expecting more than one baby.
Can you start showing at 9 weeks?
If you’re showing at 9 weeks pregnant, that can be totally normal ‒ it’s either a little bloating, baby’s more prominent on your small frame, or you could be a mama of multiples!
Can you start showing at 10 weeks?
Showing at 10 weeks certainly can happen ‒ it’s still quite early, so tends to only happen to first-time mamas, those with slim body types, or several babies making an appearance.
How your bump is measured during your pregnancy
From around 24 weeks, your doctor will measure your tummy at each appointment to see when you start showing pregnancy.
This record is called fundal length (or fundal height), and it’s from the pubic bone to the top of the uterus.
It’s used as a rough guide to show how many weeks along you are and works out at about 1cm per week – so if you measure 25cm, then you’re around 25 weeks along.
The medical pros can use this basic measurement to gauge if they need to do any further checks on your health or the baby’s growth.
But they also use this info with caution because it’s not perfect, and various factors (e.g. if you’re carrying multiple babies) can change it.
What factors impact when you start showing in pregnancy?
If you’re worried that you’re not showing or you’re showing early in pregnancy, there can be many reasons why ‒ here are a few:
- Body type. Your body type might also influence how soon you show, so if you have a lower weight and smaller waist, you might show nearer to 12 weeks, but if you carry more weight, have a longer torso, or have more curve to your hips, you might not see the bump “pop” until nearer 16 weeks.
- Age. Generally, the older the mama-to-be, the greater the possibility of showing earlier. It comes back to those tummy muscles often being “weaker” as you age.
- Your internal shape. What shape your uterus is may affect how soon you show, how it grows to accommodate the baby, and similarly, which direction it tilts (backward or forwards) means that you could take longer to show (if yours is tilted backward).
Where does your baby bump start to show?
Usually, you’ll notice a slight swelling in the lower part of your tummy, which can look more like bloating at the start, but it will become firm and more pronounced as the pregnancy progresses.
How your bump looks will be totally unique to you, as some mamas-to-be carry round and high (like a soccer ball), and others carry wider and lower.
Reasons for not showing during pregnancy
If you’re worried about not showing at 17 weeks or later, there are many reasons for not showing during pregnancy.
Showing a little later is not usually an indicator that there is a problem, but if you feel that your bump is showing much sooner than you expected or that you’re bigger than you expected, then there’s a possibility that you’re further along in your pregnancy than you thought.
So, seek reassurance from your OB if you have any concerns.
Remember, every mama-to-be will show and carry their pregnancy a little differently.
Try not to compare your bump with anyone else’s or worry if anyone queries the size of your bump.
So you can only really ask, “when do you start showing pregnancy”, not “when do pregnant women start showing” since every pregnancy journey is different.