General information about pregnancy
Welcome to the world of eminent parenthood. Pregnancy is the state of union between a sperm and an ovum in the uterus, the formation of a fetus that is nurtured in the mother's womb. Pregnancy covers the entire time frame of 40 weeks; from the minute the fetus is conceived to the moment of the birth.
Being pregnant is a totally different feeling for the would-be mothers, whether they are first time pregnant or having a second, third, and fourth child. The changes are apparent not only in the body physically, but in the emotional well being as well. The hormones that cause the physiological changes in the body are also responsible for emotional changes that happen to a pregnant woman.
What are the symptoms of Pregnancy?
Pregnancy means some very important changes are happening in your body. The whole phase of pregnancy that lasts for approximately nine months is divided into three phases of three months each, based on the commonality of the symptomatic changes in the body.
With the moment of conception the body starts preparing itself to nurture the fetus and deliver it to the world as a healthy baby at the end of 40 weeks of prenatal care. However not all babies are born after a pregnancy of forty weeks. The time of delivery is dependent on a lot of factors like the health of the pregnant woman, the health of the fetus etc. In general, a pregnancy is said to last 40 weeks.
How the body changes in the first trimester?
Some very common pregnancy symptoms in the initial stages are given here
1.Missed period: This is probably one of the first signs that make women aware of their pregnancy. This is the time the uterus uses all the resources it has for creating an environment for the fetus to grow inside it. Women miss their period for the entire tenure of their pregnancy.
2.Nausea and vomiting: This is called as morning sickness, as most women have the feeling of nausea and vomiting in the mornings only. However, some may even have this feeling in the evening as well. These symptoms generally reduce at the end of the first three months of pregnancy.
3.Frequency of urination: This is the time when women feel the need to use the bathroom more. The growing fetus causes the uterus to expand and put pressure on the bladder.
4.Constipation: Expanding uterus also makes women feel constipated.
How the body changes in the second trimester?
This is often the time most pregnant ladies report to be the most comfortable period for the body. This is the time when the disturbing feelings of nausea and dizziness have ended to provide some amount of relief. Some common changes the body undergoes in this phase are the following:
1.Stretching of skin: As the tissues and muscles stretches to accommodate a growing uterus, the surrounding skin also stretches causing at times reddish or pinkish lines on the skin called stretch marks. These are a kind of scars that occur during the second part of the pregnancy. Not all women get stretch marks, though. Often these marks fade away with time, after delivery. At other times they may be of a little permanent nature. Even in those cases, they can be treated to disappear. Darker skinned women may notice patches of skin turning a shade darker. This is also a temporary condition called melasma or chloasma. These too are caused by hormonal changes and will disappear at the end of the pregnancy.
2.Sensation of Itching: the pregnancy causes many hormonal disturbances that in turn cause the sensations of itchiness in the pregnant lady. They are temporary disturbances that disappear on delivery of the baby.
How the body changes in the third trimester?
In this phase of pregnancy, the body is preparing itself to give birth to a new individual, a baby. So most of the physiological changes happen as a result of that process. Some symptoms of first and second trimester may continue in this phase as well. Some common symptoms particular to this phase of pregnancy are given as following.
1.Heartburn: Women in their third trimester of pregnancy of complain of acidity and heartburn. This happens as a result of the growing uterus pushing on the stomach and other organs. Often eating a diet low on fatty foods, taking enough fluids cause the relief from the problem.
2.Swelling of feet, face: Swelling of feet or face is also quite common. Sitting with feet resting on any elevated platform may help the pregnant lady. If swelling is along with rapid weight gain, consultation with the doctor is essential.
3.Tender Breasts: As the pregnancy comes to it's term, the body also starts adjusting for the birth and afterwards. Changes occur in the breasts also and that's why they feel tender, as they are getting ready to feed the baby on its arrival.