Pregnancy is a wonderful journey which begins from conception
Having a baby and feeling a new life developing inside your womb is a wonderful journey full of emotions, changes, enrichment and challenges.
Throughout this period, your body will undergo major psychological changes that support maternal adaptations to prepare for the birth process and transition to parenthood.
Simultaneously, the embryo is developing from a single cell to a complex organism: a unique human life begins.
Pregnancy can be different from woman to woman and even for the same mother from one pregnancy to the next. Every mother is affected differently and will experience new feelings.
Sentiments of pregnancy last for nine months but the joy of motherhood lasts for a lifetime!
During the first two weeks of the menstrual cycle your body prepares for ovulation.
The hormones stimulate the ovaries to produce and release an egg from the ovary into the oviduct at the same time giving a signal to the inner part of your uterus, to thicken and prepare for the fertilized egg. The egg release, called ovulation, mostly occurs two weeks after the first day of the menstrual cycle. Once the ovulation takes place, the egg travels its way down the oviduct where it may get fertilized.
Conception occurs when the sperm and egg unite in one of the fallopian tubes to form a one-celled entity called a zygote which contains 46 chromosomes, (23 from the mother and 23 from the father).
These chromosomes will determine the genetic make-up of the fetus and ultimately all physical characteristics of your baby.
The sex of the fetus is already determined at fertilization, depending on whether the egg receives an X or a Y chromosome from a sperm cell. If the egg receives an X chromosome, the baby will be a girl; an Y chromosome means the baby will be a boy.
Soon after fertilization, the zygote travels down the fallopian tube towards the uterus and at the same time, it will begin dividing to form a cluster of cells in a process named cleavage. When it reaches the uterus, the rapidly dividing ball of cells known as a blastocyst, has separated into two sections.
The inner group of cells will become the embryo. The outer group will become the cells that nourish and protect it. On contact, the blastocyst will burrow into the uterine wall for nourishment. This process is called implantation.
Once the embryo is implanted on the uterine wall, your body begins to secrete a hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) which can be detected in a laboratory, to confirm pregnancy.
Pregnancy hormones such as estrogen and progesterone may trigger symptoms including fatigue, breast tenderness or nausea, especially in the first three months.
Your journey is about to begin…