Weeks Three and Four of Pregnancy

August 10, 2008

Pregnant Week Three - Egg Meets Sperm

Well, all of that effort in preconception planning and knowing when you ovulate has paid off. You've ovulated, perhaps you even felt it as a pain in your side and wonder of wonders - and the egg has been exposed to sperm. The egg and sperm met in your fallopian tube and now the fertilized egg will begin the 7 to 10 day journey to its first home, your uterus. Once it arrives there, implantation will take place. When the egg implants in the uterus, sometimes there is some spotting which occurs as a result of the egg burrowing into the uterus. This is called implantation bleeding and is nothing to be concerned over. At this time your body will also release an immunosuppressant protein called Early Pregnancy Factor (EPF) which prevents your body from rejecting the egg, seeing the baby as an enemy invader. If you've undergone fertility treatments to conceive, the chances of a multiple birth are very, very good.

Baby is Planted--A Blastocyst

Once the implantation happens cell division commences immediately and will continue on throughout the baby's journey to the outside world. The name given to your baby at this stage is "blastocyst" and your baby measures about 0.1-.02mm in diameter. Pretty amazing!

Dad is probably pretty clueless as to what is going on at this point, but ignorance is bliss. Things will definitely change - and quickly. Maybe he's counting the days until you can take a pregnancy test to confirm your condition. No matter, hopefully he will continue all of the good habits he's begun to ensure your conception.

Pregnant Week Four - Your Body Knows What's Going On

Here it is, week four and your body got the memo. If you've done a urine pregnancy test, it has likely come back positive and you and your partner are beside yourselves with joy. A urine pregnancy test measurers the levels of the pregnancy hormone hCG present in your urine. If your partner read the test, he's probably flying pretty high. If the hCG rating is really high, you might just have twins on the way.

You are already beginning to exhibit signs of pregnancy. You're tired and you've been making several more trips to the bathroom than usual. Those emotions and moods seem to have a life of their own and your partner is beginning to wonder who you are and what you did with his wife. And to literally top things off, your breasts are very tender and sore. Yup, you're pregnant and these common signs are confirming it. Take care not to expose yourself to environmental hazards. The first 12 weeks, or first trimester, of pregnancy is critical for the formation of your baby. Be especially sure to avoid alcohol, smoking and drugs. On the other hand, healthy eating and a good exercise program are important.

Pregnancy: Settling in for the Journey

Baby is growing quickly. The chorionic villi, which is the outer membrane surrounding the embryo, is fully formed and the gestational sac is present. Baby's food source until the placenta is formed, the yolk sac, is appearing as well. Baby is on the move.

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