What Is A Pregnancy Term?
Being pregnant is a beautiful experience that can often mean navigating a lot of unfamiliar words and phrases. Pregnancy-related terms can be confusing, so it is important to understand what each one means.
Understanding Pregnancy Terms
Pregnancy terms relate to various stages of the pregnancy journey and describe various aspects of the process.
- Prenatal care: Medical services and advice provided to pregnant women to ensure both mother and baby receive the best care.
- Fetus: The unborn baby from around 8 weeks after fertilization to birth.
- Gestation: The period of time between conception and birth.
- Trimester: A three-month period during pregnancy, counted starting from the first day of the last menstrual period.
The Phases of Pregnancy
Pregnancy is broken down into three phases, each covering approximately one trimester.
- First trimester: This is the period when the fetus develops most of its organs and structures. It lasts from week one to week twelve.
- Second trimester: This is the period where the fetus grows rapidly, gains weight and improves its sensory pathways. It lasts from week thirteen to week twenty-six.
- Third trimester: This is the period when the fetus prepares for birth, which includes rapid growth and development of the baby’s lungs and other bodily systems. It lasts from week twenty-seven to week forty.
Other Terms to Know
- Delivery: The end of the maternity period when the baby is born.
- Due date: An estimated date of delivery, calculated from the last menstrual period date.
- Embryo: An unborn baby in the early stages of development, usually from conception to week eight after fertilization.
- Contraction: The tightening and shortening of the uterine muscles during labor.
- Morning sickness: Nausea and vomiting that can occur in the first trimester of pregnancy.
Understanding common pregnancy terms can help expectant mothers and their families make the most of their pregnancy journey. Being informed on the different pregnancy terms not only increases one’s knowledge, but it also can lead to better communication and understanding between doctor and patient.
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