Pregnancy is the most important period in a woman`s life. She may experience a lot of new things that may adventure to her. However every woman has a dream to be a mother. Pregnancy is the first step to fulfill her dream.
A woman`s reproductive period begins at menarche and it ends by onset of menopause. The average reproductive age is between 13 to 45 years. We can rarely found pregnancy below the age of 12 years or more than 50 years of age. Clinically the period of pregnancy is calculated as 9 months and 7 days or in other term 280 days or 40 weeks average from the first day of last menstrual period.
Let’s know some very common signs that may appear early in pregnancy:
Firstly, she may experience morning sickness. Morning sickness is characterized by nausea gradually appears with vomiting on rising up from bed.Morning sickness may present in about 50% women, experiencing their first pregnancy than in later one. It generally occurs within 12th to 20th weeks of pregnancy. Some women experience frequency of micturition (urine) during second to third month of pregnancy. This symptom may disappear within third month. Breast discomfort, fatigue are another common symptom in early pregnancy.
Now, let`s see the common changes that occurs in a pregnant mothers body and organs.
- In case of first pregnancy, breast changes are more noticeable. The breasts become enlarged. The nipples and areola become more pigmented (dark in color) and may also enlarged.
- The abdomen (belly) become enlarged due to enlargement of uterus. As the pregnancy period become longer, the fetus in utero grows, the uterus will be enlarged.
- The skin of abdomen will be pigmented also. There may be linea nigrae (cracked skin), striae are seen.
- The woman feels movement of the baby in uterus (fetal movement). It is termed as “Quickening“.
- Fetal heart sound can be detected between 18th to 20th weeks of pregnancy. The heart rate is vary from 110 to 160 beats per minute.
Let`s know how will you diagnose pregnancy……
- There is a missed period. The woman will experience amenorrhea.
- Nausea, fatigue, frequent urination.
- Now a day’s various bits in card form are available in the market. A woman can test her urine at home to diagnose whether she is pregnant or not.
- Ultrasonography may detect pregnancy after second or third month of amenorrhea. It will more accurate if it is done at 12th to 20th weeks of gestation. Fetal viability can be detected by ultrasonography.
Some common problems in pregnancy….
Minor problems –
- Acidity, heart burn.
- Leg crumps.
Major problems –
- Ankle oedema.
- Varicose vein.
- Blurring of vision.
- Per vaginal bleeding.
Precautions to be taken during pregnancy
Learn the precautions to be take while you are pregnant to avoid high risks.
- Regular checkup by specialized physician or by a trained health personnel.
- 1st visit should be made within 16th weeks of first day of last menstrual period.
- 2nd visit should be between 24th to 28th weeks of gestation.
- 3rd visit should be at 32nd weeks of gestation.
- 4th visit should be at 36th
These are WHO (World Health Organization) given schedule for health checkup of a pregnant mother.
If any complications arise, another appointment may be made as needed.
- Do some needful investigation and laboratory tests.
- Ultrasonography (to detect gestational age, EDD, to monitor fetal growth, fetal heart sound, fetal position, amount of amniotic fluid etc.)
- Hb% of blood to exclude anaemia.
- CBC or full blood count.
- Urine for R/M/E, sugar to exclude diabetes, protein to detect risk of eclampsia.
- Blood grouping and Rh typing.
- Regular monitoring of mother`s body weight to identify whether she is suffering from malnutrition or not.
- Monitoring of blood pressure.