You’re at the beginning of an incredible stage of life that will see your body undergo dramatic changes.
A daily prenatal vitamin supplement before and during early pregnancy helps protect your baby from spinal cord defects.
Drinking soft drinks rather than alcohol may help you to conceive; add fruit to drinks for extra benefit.
The path to conception
Sexual intercourse timed to coincide with ovulation is most likely to lead to a successful pregnancy.
The release of an egg
At ovulation, an enlarged
follicle in the ovary ruptures to release the mature egg, ready to be
fertilized in a fallopian tube by your partner’s sperm.
Facts and figures
You have a 3.5 in 1000 chance of having identical twins.
By the time you
discover you’re pregnant, your baby has reached the embryonic period and
the brain, heart, and other organs are starting to form.
In the crucial first
weeks, the baby’s vital organs begin to develop and the neural tube,
which becomes the brain and spinal cord, is forming.
At 6 weeks
Budlike structures can be seen on the embryo that will develop into your baby’s limbs.
As the realization sinks
in that you’re facing parenthood, you may discover a new dimension to
your relationship and an enhanced sense of togetherness.
Facts and figures
At 7 weeks, your baby measures just 1/3 in (8 mm) crown to rump.
By 8 weeks
The head has grown rapidly, giving an unbalanced appearance, and the limbs are lengthening.
Early pregnancy can
often be marred by nausea and vomiting, especially in the mornings;
eating crackers or sipping a decaf tea can help quell the symptoms.
At 9 weeks
The fetus is starting to have a recognizable form, with facial features beginning to develop.
A classic symptom
of early pregnancy is a feeling of complete exhaustion, thought to be
due to rising hormone levels and the dramatic physiological changes your
body undergoes as your baby grows rapidly.
Dating the pregnancy
Between 10 and 14
weeks, your first ultrasound will confirm the gestational age of your
baby. Your original due date may be revised as a result of this scan and
the timing of future tests will be based on its findings.
At first, only you are aware of subtle body changes. By three months, changes may be visible.