Pregnancy Weeks and Months - Pregnancy Calculator
Determining When the Baby Will Be Born
Once you have confirmed that you are pregnant, the next big question is usually, When will the baby be born? Good question. If you want a pretty accurate determination of the birth date, there are pregnancy calculators online you can access. These pregnancy calculators operate with software designed with a due date calculator that is based upon the date of your last period. If the question about your pregnancy is the gestational age of the baby, which is different from the menstrual age of, a pregnancy calculator can figure that out for you. Most healthcare practitioners figure the age of the pregnancy by the number of weeks since your last period. Ovulation and conception are estimated to be 14 days before your period was due. The nice thing is that you only have to provide a couple of dates and the rest is done for you.
Once you have your pregnancy weeks established by the calculator, then you can obtain a pregnancy calendar which gives you a description of your pregnancy through the weeks in pictures. You can watch your baby develop and grow throughout your pregnancy and you can know what to expect in your pregnancy months and weeks.
Pregnancy Symptoms in the First Trimester
Pregnancy symptoms in the beginning weeks, called the first trimester, are varied. You will probably feel very tired and want to sleep a lot. The other thing you'll want to do a lot is go to the bathroom. You may have some cramping and slight bleeding that occurs when the egg implants into the uterus. The cramping may continue for a period as your body adjusts to the changes that are going on. Your breasts will become swollen and feel heavy and very sore, and morning sickness (nausea and vomiting) may occur. Not all women have all symptoms. The first 12 weeks or so can be pretty challenging as your body does what it needs to do to accommodate the new life within.
Things Get Better in the Second Trimester
By the time the second trimester rolls around, your energy levels are almost normal and almost all of the symptoms from the first trimester are gone. You may still have to run to the bathroom frequently as the weight of the baby against your uterus causes pressure. This trimester will see you gaining weight at the rate of about a pound a week. You'll begin to show and will move into maternity clothing which allows for growth and expansion of the girth as the baby grows. This is the trimester when you will be able to feel your baby moving - it's so exciting.
Preparing for Birth - Third Trimester Symptoms
The third trimester brings another shift as you become less comfortable and tired again. You will continue to gain weight and your belly will continue to expand with the growing baby. Finding a comfortable spot to sit or lie down will be challenging and sleep may escape you more often than not. You may find that your extremities swell easily, especially in the heat. Swollen ankles and fingers seem to be part and parcel of late term pregnancy. If the swelling becomes exaggerated, then a visit to the doctor is necessary to determine if your blood pressure is okay or if you are tending toward preeclampsia.
You also may have pelvic pressure and some discharge as the baby's head moves into position for birth. All of this preparation can leave you feeling even more tired, especially if you aren't sleeping well to begin with. The movement of the baby into position for birth can put pressure on the lower back and hips. Braxton-Hicks contractions (also known as false labor) prepare the cervix and uterus for the real thing. These can happen any time during the latter second trimester and all through the third. Don't worry, you'll know when the real thing hits and you will be able to distinguish it from false labor.
Before you know it, you will have given birth and your body will slowly regain its normal size and contours. If you are active, exercising, and eating properly, your labor and delivery may be helped and your recovery from delivery can be faster. Taking good care throughout pregnancy goes a long way to making labor, delivery and recovery easier.