Challenges For Pregnant Petite Women & Effects On The Baby

pregnant petite

Petite is an adjective used for small women. It is usually said as a compliment; however, when a tiny woman is pregnant, she’s known as a petite pregnant woman. Small women are known to be adorable and have their advantages. They can get clothes from the kid’s section, and guys of every height will be interested in them. It’s just simply wonderful to be a tiny woman.

Being petite has its benefits, but pregnant petite women have to deal with a bunch of rude comments and be mistaken for their pregnancy. They are often mistaken for teenage moms and people walking by often whisper “poor little girl.”

Medical studies have found that petite women, in small numbers, have premature births. It doesn’t necessarily happen to every small woman, and many give birth to a full-grown healthy baby. The same size baby looks bigger when crammed in a smaller space, so the baby of a small woman does look bigger.

What Is the Normal Weight Gain During Pregnancy?

The weight women put on during pregnancy depends on their size. On average, women should gain 25 to 30 pounds while many gain 2-4 pounds during the first trimester. Overweight women need to gain less weight (7-10 kgs depending on their weight) and underweight women need to gain 13 to 18 kgs. If the woman is giving birth to more than one baby, her weight gain should be higher, 34-37 pounds.

A balanced and nutrient-rich diet is to be followed during pregnancies and the calories gained should be tracked down. During the 1st trimester, 1800 calories are to be taken per day. In the second trimester, 2200 calories are to be taken, and in the third trimester, 2400 calories per day are ideal.

If you are a pregnant petite woman, try to gain a little more than one pound every week during the second and third trimesters if you are also underweight. If you are an overweight small woman, then try not to gain too many pounds. 1-4 is okay in the 1st trimester.

What Does it Mean if I Have a Petite Pregnancy?

Petite pregnancies are just the pregnancies of tiny women. They come with their complications and risks. Studies have found that shorter women have shorter pregnancies. Small women show their pregnancies earlier. There are a few differences between a pregnant woman and a petite pregnant woman.

Shopping for maternity clothes for small women is more difficult than it may seem. Most women can just wear their normal clothes for four to five months, but after that, it is time to change their maternity wardrobe.

Regular shops hardly have maternity clothes for petite women. If you can’t find any maternity section, go on the internet and find the best clothes for yourself. Make sure you look through the petite sizes and choose them correctly. Importantly, looks for tops that are not too loose and have much fabric. Look for maternity leggings that are comfortable and go with most tops. For a better fashion sense, look through the internet to find petite pregnancy styling tips.

How Can Being Petite Affect My Pregnancy?

Gestational height is influenced by more than the mother’s alleles, and whatever makes the woman giving birth short also generates a shorter gestational height. Petite mothers have shorter pregnancies than normal, smaller babies, and a higher risk of giving birth earlier than normal. The current research done on this has approved the statement that a mother’s height influences her chances of premature birth.

Petite pregnancies often struggle during birth since the pelvic opening is small. They may have to face episiotomy, which is when the doctors cut between the vagina and anus of the woman so the opening is bigger for the baby to come out. This complication of delivering can also cause excessive bleeding.

We know it is important to be healthy to avoid complications for the baby, but not many talk about the effects that height has on the birth of a baby. Shorter women have been told that the baby they will deliver will be preterm, and to some extent that is true, but pregnancies don’t entirely depend on one factor.

Premature births are those before 37 weeks, and babies born before prematurely are known to have respiratory or digestive issues. The short stature of women may influence the duration of the baby in the womb. The other complication a petite women’s baby would suffer is a lack of oxygen supply and low weight.

That is why it is important to have your husband, family, or friend to be there in the moment to support you. If it’s your first pregnancy, then expect things to be a bit more difficult because it’s your first time dealing with the everyday morning sickness, mood swings, and a growing belly.

No pregnancies are guaranteed and any can fail. Being petite does affect the height of the baby because of the genes that will be transferred. There are many other factors that affect the birth of a baby, but the height and weight of the mother need to be considered before getting pregnant.

Does a Petite Mother Mean a Small Baby?

The size of the mother does directly influence the height or weight of the baby in her womb. It is not a problem to worry about so much because you can still deliver a healthy baby by just being attentive to your nutrition and keeping yourself healthy.

A petite mother generally does mean a small baby. During their pregnancy, the gestational height matters a lot, and it does not mean a small baby if your husband is not small. The height of the baby depends on the genes of both mother and father, so do not think your baby will be small just because you are.

The petite pregnant folks do not need to worry, just have faith and do not lose hope. Take utmost care of yourself and do not listen to negative opinions of anyone for petite pregnancies even if it’s your doctor.

Can Petite Pregnancy Lead To Complications?

Can Petite Pregnancy Lead To Complications?

Petite pregnancies do bring complications. Petite women are those shorter than 4’11. The smallest problem is that they are mistaken for teen moms, and the biggest complication is preterm birth. Babies born prematurely can have lifelong health issues like respiratory or digestive problems.

When a woman is mistaken for a teen mom, she may not be looked at with as much respect, which, isn’t a nice thing to do for anyone who is pregnant because pregnancy itself brings a lot of stress.

Small pregnant women also tend to feel like the baby inside the womb is squashed. It is because of their small size and round-shaped belly, which doesn’t allow babies ample space to move around.

Other complications include not being able to find petite maternity clothes and gaining weight. Petite maternity clothes are barely available, and small women need to be monitored for weight gain because they are told to gain more weight than other pregnant women.

What Do I Do If I am Petite During Pregnancy?

If you are petite during pregnancy, as mentioned above, you will have to face multiple complications. Petite pregnancies are not as easy as normal pregnancies and likewise, they need to be handled with more care than usual.

if you are petite and pregnant, you need to take all of your nutrients in a balanced diet and gain weight according to your size. Consult with your doctor to avoid any complications regarding your weight, and get an exact number you are required to gain or lose.

Your diet should be as healthy as possible because petite pregnancies are successful when care is taken. You should keep up with your hope and not take the negative remarks about your pregnancy to your head.

How Can I Gain Normal Weight During Pregnancy?

Gaining weight is pretty easy and doesn’t require too much effort. But, during pregnancy, you need to gain a normal amount of weight, which you can do by eating frequently and carrying food with you all the time.

You do not need to entirely focus on eating fried and high-fat foods in order to gain weight. However, while It’s okay to have sweets and high-fat foods, different researchers have said that underweight pregnant women are more likely to reach the normal and healthy pregnancy weight by focusing on a healthy diet, as in lots of vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and whole grains.

Additionally, researches show that not gaining enough weight encourages serious harm to the baby, including things like low birth weight, less likelihood of breastfeeding, and increased chances of death during infancy or birth. By eating little, but more recurring meals throughout the day, you have the ability to add up weight. This can also assist with some pregnancy problems like nausea and heartburn. Think of foods that do not require preparation and are easy to carry everywhere with a great number of calories. For example, pack carrot sticks nuts, or dried fruit. If you have a place to keep the food at its required temperature like cold, get your hands on flavored yogurt or cheese with fruit. Cheddar tastes great on sliced apples or pears.

Drink Your Calories: If you are facing issues with eating or having difficulty consuming enough calories throughout the day, go for different drinks that are rich in calories. Consider what you drink as an added way to increase your calories.

Smoothies are a great way to drink your calories. They are also easy to make and carry so use them to consume calories easily during the day. Get protein powder and make it your best friend. Use it to add a few calories to your shakes. It doesn’t really taste so different, but it can assist in adding calories. Fruit and vegetable smoothies are the healthiest of all. Not only do they help you gain weight but also help in providing vitamins and minerals.

Gaining adequate weight during pregnancy is integral for your health and the health of the baby in your womb. Consulting your doctor about your weight gain journey will help you the best. They can see the needs you have to be fulfilled and even assign a diet nutritionist to you.

Tips for Short Pregnant Girls

Think of Clothes that Don’t Fit You

Tight petite maternity clothes may bring your curves out, but they can put force on your belly and make breathing hard. You shouldn’t buy clothes that do not suit your petite frame comfortably. With a short torso, the baby will be pushing on your organs day and night, definitely making you uncomfortable. So choose a loose outfit that can give your tummy space to breathe.

In addition, you should loosen those belts a little by now. Belts look great on women with short torsos because they draw attention to the slimmer parts of your body. But just make sure they are not wrapping your belly up too tightly.

Dresses Are Your New Best Friends

If you love to wear dresses, then you will put a bet on this next tip. Dresses are loose and easy to put on. They can also work at any time of the day, and you don’t have to worry about mixing and matching your tops and bottoms.

Vertical Lines Will Make You Look Taller and More Balanced

You may have heard this advice before. But vertical lines will definitely make you seem taller and more steady. You can append a bit of height to your outfits by wearing a striped dress or comfy trousers. 

Wear Something You Can Easily Take Off

Your kid will be pushing other organs in your body, including your bladder. You might be having more trips to the bathroom, so it will be a hassle to wear too many layers.


Not all petite pregnant women fail to deliver a healthy baby. A diet full of healthy food, vitamins, and minerals is a must-have when you are pregnant. You’d be mistaken for a teen mom and have trouble buying maternity clothes, but you can always find them on the internet and focus on only the positive.

Stephanie Edenburgh

I'm Steph, a mom to 3 beautiful children and lover all things having to do with my family and being a mom. I've learned a lot raising my own children and working in education and healthcare roles throughout my career. Living in beautiful Southern California I enjoy documenting and writing about all of the hard work us mom's do on a daily basis.

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