Fetal Development : Stages of Growth


Fetal Development/ Stages of Growth

The egg that will become your baby separates quickly into several cells within 24 hours of fertilization. Your baby's name will transition from egg to fetus by the eighth week of birth. A average pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks. There are three trimesters in these weeks. More about your baby's development as the pregnancy progresses.

When does a .pregnancy start ?

The first day of your last menstrual cycle marks the start of your pregnancy. The gestational age, also known as menstrual age, is the age at which a woman becomes pregnant. It happens about two weeks before the real pregnancy. Though it might sound odd, the date of your last period's first day would be crucial in deciding your baby's due date. This day will be brought up by the healthcare professional, who will use that to determine how far ahead you are with your pregnancy.

How does .conception work ?

Your body goes through a menstrual cycle every month, which can result in one of two ways. Then you will have a menstrual cycle or you will become pregnant. This pattern repeats itself during the reproductive years, from puberty in your teens to menopause at the age of 50.
There are multiple stages in a series that culminates in birth. First, a collection of eggs (known as oocytes) prepares to leave the ovary in preparation for ovulation (release of the egg). The eggs mature in tiny, fluid-filled cysts called follicles. Think of these follicles as tiny containers for each immature egg. One mature egg will be selected from this category and will begin the cycle. Many of the other follicles in the group are thus suppressed by this follicle. At this point, all of the other follicles have stopped rising.Now the mature follicle opens and the egg is released from the ovary. This is the phase of ovulation. Ovulation generally happens about two weeks before your next menstrual period begins. It usually occurs in the middle of the cycle.

After ovulation, the opened (ruptured) follicle grows into a formation called the corpus luteum. Progesterone and estrogen are secreted (released) by this gland. Progesterone aids in the preparation of the endometrium (lining of the uterus). This lining is where a fertilized egg develops after being fertilized. This lining is shed after your period if you should not get pregnant during your cycle.
On average, fertilization occurs around two weeks after the last menstrual cycle. When the sperm penetrates the nucleus, modifications occur in the protein covering of the egg to prevent any sperm from entering.

Your baby's genetic make-up, including its identity, is complete at the time of fertilization. Your baby's gender is determined by the sperm fertilizes the egg at the time of pregnancy. In general, women have a genetic combination of XX, while men have a genetic combination of XY. You, as the mother, label each egg with an X. An X or a Y can be found in each sperm. It's a child if the fertilized egg and sperm are both an X and a Y. It's a female if there are two Xs.

What happens right after conception ?

The egg starts quickly dividing into several cells within 24 hours of fertilization. Since pregnancy, it stays in the fallopian tube for approximately three days. The fertilized egg (now known as a blastocyte) divides further as it travels across the fallopian tube to the uterus. The next task is to bind to the endometrium until it has arrived. This is called implantation
The blastocyte, however, breaks free from its protective covering before being implanted. The blastocyte and the endometrium share hormones as they come into touch, which aids the blastocyte's attachment. During the one or two days before implantation, some women experience spotting (light bleeding). This is perfectly natural and nothing to be concerned about. The endometrium thickens at this stage, and a plug of mucus seals the cervix (the opening between your uterus and birth canal).

The blastocyte cells eventually form a small ball, or embryo, within three weeks. The baby's first nerve cells have emerged by this time.
In the first few weeks of pregnancy, the baby's name has already changed a few times. From conception to the eighth week of development, your baby will be referred to as an embryo. The baby will be referred to as a fetus before it is born after the eighth week.

How early can I know I’m pregnant ?

The hormone human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) is present in your bloodstream from the moment you are conceived. The cells that make up the placenta produce this hormone (food source for your baby in the womb). It's also the hormone that a pregnancy test detects. Despite the fact that this hormone is present from the start, it takes time for it to build up in your body. It takes three to four weeks for the hCG level to rise enough to be detected by pregnancy tests after the first day of your last cycle.

When should I reach out to my healthcare provider about a new pregnancy ?

Most healthcare providers would require you to wait until you have received a positive home pregnancy test before scheduling an appointment. When you have enough hCG circulating in the body, these checks are very precise. This can be a few weeks after conception. It’s best to call your healthcare provider once you have a positive pregnancy test to schedule your first appointment.
Your healthcare provider may inquire whether you are taking a prenatal vitamin when you dial. Folic acid is a component of these supplements. To ensure that the baby's neural tube (the beginning of the baby's brain and spine) grows properly, you can consume at least 400mcg of folic acid a day while pregnant. And if you aren't pregnant, many healthcare providers recommend that you take folic acid-fortified prenatal vitamins. If you didn't start taking prenatal vitamins before becoming pregnant, your doctor may advise you to do so as soon as possible.

What’s the timeline for my baby’s development ?

During a typical pregnancy, your baby will go through a lot of changes. Trimesters are three stages in which time is divided. Each trimester lasts approximately three months. Your healthcare provider will most likely discuss your baby's development in weeks with you. You are about 12 weeks pregnant if you are three months pregnant.
During each trimester, you will see distinct differences in your baby and yourself.
Pregnancy is traditionally thought to be a nine-month phase. This isn't always the case, however. A 40-week (280-day) pregnancy is considered full-term. Depending on the month you're pregnant (some are shorter than others) and the week you give birth,It's possible that you'll be breastfeeding for nine to ten months. This is perfectly natural and safe doing.When you're at the end of your pregnancy, you'll learn a lot of different names about when you'll go into labour. The last few weeks of pregnancy are divided by these names. They're also used to track newborns for any conditions. Babies born before the full term period or in the early term period may have a greater chance of breathing, hearing, or learning problems than babies born a few weeks later in the full term period. It's crucial to understand how these marks are written when looking at them. The week (38) may appear first, followed by two numbers separated by a slash mark (6/7). This indicates how far along you are with your gestational week.
The following classes make up the last three weeks of pregnancy:

37 0/7 weeks to 38 6/7 weeks (early term).

39 0/7 weeks to 40 6/7 weeks is the full term.

41 0/7 weeks to 41 6/7 weeks (late term).

After the word, 42 0/7 weeks and onwards

If you have any concerns about your baby's gestational age or due date, talk to your healthcare provider.

Stages of Growth Month-by-Month in Pregnancy

Trimester one
From conception to 12 weeks, the first trimester will last. This usually occurs during the first three months of pregnancy. During this trimester, the baby will grow from a tiny cluster of cells to a fetus with baby-like characteristics.

1st month (weeks 1 through 4)

A water-tight sac forms around the fertilized egg as it expands, eventually filling with fluid. The amniotic sac is a cushion that protects the developing embryo.
The placenta also grows at this period. The placenta is a round, flat organ that transports nutrients and waste from the mother to the infant. Consider the placenta as a source of nutrition for your son.
For the whole pregnancy

During the first few weeks, a primitive face with big dark circles for eyes will emerge. The lower jaw, lip, and throat are all growing. Circulation can begin as blood cells begin to form. At the end of the fourth week, the tiny "heart" tube will be beating 65 times a minute.
Your baby will be about 1/4 inch long at the end of the first month, about the size of a grain of rice.

Month 2 (weeks 5 to 8) (weeks 5 through 8)

Your baby's facial features continue to grow. An ear starts as a small fold of skin on the head's side. Tiny buds are emerging, which will gradually develop into arms and legs. The formation of fingers, toes, and eyes is now underway.
The neural tube (brain, spinal cord, and other central nervous system neural tissue) is now fully developed. In addition, the digestive tract and sensory organs start to mature. Cartilage is being replaced by bone.
At this stage, your baby's head is disproportionately big in comparison to the rest of the body. The heartbeat of your baby will normally be felt at about 6 weeks.
During the eighth week, the infant is referred to as a fetus rather than an egg.
By the second month's end,Your infant is approximately 1 inch long and weighs approximately 1/30 ounce.

3rd month (weeks 9 through 12)

The arms, shoulders, thumbs, feet, and toes of your infant are completely developed. At this stage, your baby is beginning to explore by opening and closing his or her fists and mouth. The external ears are forming, and fingernails and toenails are starting to grow. Under the gums, the first teeth are developing. Your baby's genital organs grow as well, but ultrasound can't tell you whether he or she is male or female.Your baby will be completely grown by the end of the third month. Both organs and limbs (extremities) are present and will grow more to become functional. The circulatory and urinary systems of the infant are also functioning, and the liver is producing bile.
Your infant is about 4 inches long and weighs about 1 ounce at the end of the third month.
After three months, the baby's most important development has occurred, and your chances of miscarriage have decreased significantly.

In the second trimester,
The third trimester of pregnancy is also regarded as the most enjoyable part of the journey. Morning sickness may have passed by this stage, as well as the discomforts of early pregnancy. During this month, the baby will begin to develop facial features. As your baby twists and turns in the uterus, you can start to feel movement. Most people find out the sex of the baby during this trimester. Around 20 weeks, this is usually done during an anatomy scan (an ultrasound that checks your baby's physical development).

4th month (weeks 13 through 16)
An device called a doppler could now be able to detect your baby's heartbeat. The toes and fingers are well marked. Eyelids, eyebrows, eyelashes, nails and hair are formed. Teeth and bones get denser. Your infant will also suck his or her thumb, yawn, flex, and create facial expressions.
The nervous system is beginning to work. Your doctor will see whether you're expecting a boy or a girl using ultrasound and your reproductive organs and genitalia are now fully grown.
Your baby will be about 6 inches long and weigh 4 ounces at the end of the fourth month.

5th month (weeks 17 through 20)

You can notice your baby moving about at this stage. Your baby is growing and exercising his or her muscles. Quickening is the first movement, which may sound like a flutter.
On the baby's head, hair starts to grow. Lanugo is a fine, soft hair that covers your baby's shoulders, back, and temples.Vernix caseosa is a whitish layer that covers the baby's skin. This "cheesy" material is thought to shield your baby's skin from amniotic fluid exposure. Just before birth, this layer is shed.
Your baby will be about 10 inches long and weigh between 1/2 and 1 pound by the end of the fifth month.

6th month (weeks 21 through 24)

If you could see your baby's skin inside the uterus right now, you'd notice that it's reddish in colour, wrinkled, and veins are visible through the baby's translucent skin. The prints of the baby's fingers and toes can be seen. The eyelids begin to part and the eyes open at this stage.When a baby hears something, he or she will move or increase their pulse. If your baby hiccups, you can note jerking movements.
If your baby is born prematurely, he or she will survive if given intensive care after the 23rd week.
Your baby will be about 12 inches long and weigh about 2 pounds by the end of the sixth month.

7th month (weeks 25 through 28)

Your baby will continue to grow and accumulate body fat reserves. The baby's hearing is completely formed at this stage. The baby moves around a lot and responds to stimuli like sound, pain, and light. The amniotic fluid starts to deplete.
If your baby is born early, he or she is expected to live until the seventh month.Your baby is about 14 inches long and weighs between 2 and 4 pounds at the end of the seventh month.

Trimester three
This is where the pregnancy comes to an end. You may be tempted to start counting down the days before your due date in the hopes that it will arrive sooner, but each week of this final stage of development aids your baby in preparing for childbirth. Your baby will gain weight rapidly in the third trimester, adding body fat that will aid after birth.Remember that, while popular culture only refers to nine months of pregnancy, you may be pregnant for up to ten months. A full-term pregnancy is 40 weeks long, which can extend into the tenth month. It's also likely that you'll be able to go a week or two past your deadline (41 or 42 weeks)When you get closer to the due date, your healthcare provider will keep a close eye on you. If you don't go into spontaneous labor after your due date, your provider can induce you. This ensures that drugs would be used to induce labour and give birth to the infant. During this trimester, make sure to discuss your birth plans with your healthcare provider.

8th month (weeks 29 through 32)

Your baby will continue to grow and accumulate body fat reserves. You might find that your baby is kicking a lot more than normal. At this age, your baby's brain is rapidly growing, and he or she can see and hear. The majority of the internal structures are mature, but the lungs may still be immature.
Your child is about 18 inches long and weights up to 5 pounds.

9th month (weeks 33 through 36)

Your baby will continue to develop and grow throughout this time. At this stage, the lungs are almost completely grown.
Your baby's reflexes are synchronized, allowing him or her to blink, close his or her eyes, turn his or her head, grasp tightly, and respond to sound, light, and touch.
Your baby is between 17 and 19 inches long and weights between 5 and 6 pounds.

Month ten (Weeks 37 through 40)

You could go into labor at any time during the last month. Due to the limited room, you can find that your baby moves less. Your baby's location may have changed at this point to prepare for birth. The baby should be head down in your uterus. As the baby descends into your pelvis and prepares for delivery, you may feel very uneasy in this final stretch.At this point, your baby is ready to meet the rest of the world.
Your baby is about 18 to 20 inches in length and weighs approximately 7 pounds.
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