Pregnancy (“graviditas” in latin) is the carrying of a foetus or embryo inside the womb of a female for around 38-40 weeks until the baby is born. Sometimes multiple gestation occurs as with twins, triplets, quadruplets etc. Each individual woman will go through her own unique pregnancy; some have a very easy pregnancy while others find that they encounter many problems along the way. When you find out that you are pregnant it is one of the most memorable moments of your life and from that point forward your entire lifestyle will change in order to provide the best care for your developing child.
Pregnancy Symptoms and Pregnancy Signs
There are certain signs that could indicate that you are pregnant; missed periods, nausea and vomiting, soreness of your breasts, enlargement of your breasts, frequent urination to name a few.
These are all signs that would indicate a possibility that you are now pregnant. The only way to be 100% certain that conception has taken place is by attending a qualified doctor and getting a pregnancy test, that proves positive or having an ultrasound done which will confirm you suspicions.
If you suspect that you may be pregnant but are not sure it is best to find out as soon as you are able to. From the moment of conception you will be responsible for the well being of not only yourself, but also your new baby. There will have to be a change in your diet to increase certain vitamins and minerals that your baby will need, especially folic acid. Your doctor will advise you on the best supplements to take after you have had a check up.
Pregnancy Week by Week
A normal pregnancy will last approximately thirty eight to forty weeks and the entire period is divided into three parts and that is where the term trimester comes from. The first trimester is month 1-3, the second trimester month 4-6 and the third trimester is month 7-9. Any pregnancy that ends before week thirty seven, the baby will be considered premature and would need some extra care before being able to leave the hospital. Fortunately with the advances in neonatal care, babies who are born a couple of weeks premature are not in any danger.
During your entire pregnancy it is important to pay regular visits to your obstetrician to ensure that the foetus is developing well and that no unexpected problems arise. Sometimes it may seem that your pregnancy is going on for ever, especially if you are enduring a lot of pain, morning sickness and other negative symptoms that some women go through, but a good obstetrician is invaluable as they will be able to help you overcome most of these.
Now that you have two to take care of it is extremely important to adhere to a strict pregnancy diet. You will need to eat a healthy diet and will definitely need to take some sort of multivitamin or supplement to ensure that the foetus develops properly. Make sure that these are prescribed by your obstetrician and that you don’t just buy over the counter multivitamins as some may contain chemicals that will harm your child.
Smoking during pregnancy is extremely harmful for your child and if you do smoke it is better to stop long before you even decide to try and become pregnant as the toxins can stay in your body for a few months. Although there is evidence for and against caffeine during pregnancy, it is always better to be on the side of caution and just eliminate it from your diet.
Being pregnant can be a “bumpy” ride but as long as you attend your regular checkups and take care of yourself it won’t be long before your pregnancy has ended and you hold your little bundle of joy in your arms.