For most women the time of pregnancy can bring much joy and at the same time fears and concerns. In medical terms, the word pregnancy is described as the female body nourishing an embryo. For women this nourishment stage will last up to approximately nine months in order for the tiny embryo to develop and grow into a baby.
Pregnancy is divided into three life stages or trimesters. The first stage of a pregnancy will represent a stage where a miscarriage is at its highest risk. The second stage, the pregnancy focuses on the growth of the embryo. While the third stage, the fetus starts to learn how to live and survive, preparing for life outside of the safety and comfort of the womb.
How Women Become Pregnant
Pregnancy is when union of a female egg or oocyte and a male sperm causes fertilization. This merger occurs through male sperm that is released inside the female, usually through the act of sexual intercourse. The date that is determined for the birth of a baby is usually taken from the day when the women had her last menstrual monthly cycle.
Once implantation occurs, HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) hormones are released. This hormone activates what is known as corpus luteum located in the ovaries in order to increase progesterone levels. These results in bodily changes and types of pregnancy symptoms become evident.
When any baby is born before the 37 week mark of a pregnancy, these babies will be considered and named premature. Babies that are born after the 43 week period are known as a post mature baby. 90% of babies are usually born a few weeks after their due dates, while 10% make an entrance on the exact due date.
Folic Acid in Pregnancy
Folic acid is essential during the months of pregnancy for the growing embryo. Deficiencies of folic acid can result in a baby that is born with deformities that can include spinal or brain defects.
Hot Baths in Pregnancy
Research has suggested that pregnant women should avoid hot baths in the first stage of the pregnancy. The first three months of pregnancy the women?s body increases in body heat and hot water can cause result in injury or harm to the growing embryo.
Cats and Pregnancy
If the pregnant women has a pet cat, it is very important that the litter tray is kept out of the home and only cleaned out by other family members. Research and studies have shown that a litter tray can contain a parasite known as toxoplasmosis that can be contracted onto pregnant women. The results of this disease can cause defects, blindness or brain damage to the baby.
Weight gain is an inevitable fact relating to pregnancy. Women who are healthy and within the desired weight range can expect to gain up to 35 pounds. However, overweight women can expect to gain a further 25 pounds while pregnant. Underweight women can gain up to 40 pounds and multiple births can relate to higher weight gain.
For couples who are interested and trying to fall pregnant it is of importance to learn and gather as much information and facts on pregnancy as possible. Understanding the stages of a pregnancy can result in an easier and happier outcome for both the man and the women. Planning a prepared pregnancy usually results in a more relaxed event for couples looking to have children.
Visiting a doctor from the early stages of pregnancy is advisable in order to monitor the progression stages of the embryo.