The first week of pregnancy – Knowledge is key
The first weeks of pregnancy is a good chance to load up on all the information you should know for the duration of your pregnancy – and there’s lots of it. Try not to find it too daunting though as you will always have the odd slip up but the idea is to enjoy your pregnancy as it is a precious time. Knowing what changes to expect during the nine months of pregnancy can help you face the months ahead with confidence.
Building blocks: Despite the fact there are no clear indicators at this stage, the first week of pregnancy is as important as the other weeks. Think of it as a foundation for your building – a weak foundation doesn’t raise strong buildings. Doctors calculate the first week of pregnancy from the first day of your last period. Although in reality your precious baby is still 14 days away from being conceived. To calculate your due date, your doctor will count ahead 40 weeks from the first day of your last period. This means your period is counted as part of your pregnancy even though you were not pregnant at the time.
Know your body: If you are planning to get pregnant, it’s a good idea to monitor, your monthly period. The average monthly cycle for a menstrual period is 28 days. Day one of your period is known as the first day of the menstrual cycle. The fertile period is usually 12 to 14 days after the first day – this is when you will be ovulating.
Conception: You may assume it’s straightforward to make a baby – a man and woman engage in sexual intercourse and the result is a baby nine months later. For a child to be conceived, the eggs in the woman’s ovaries, has to meet up with a male sperm. The average egg lives for only 12 to 24 hours after its release from the ovaries. If a baby has to be conceived, it has to meet a healthy sperm within this time frame, on its way to the uterus. If not, the egg’s journey ends at the uterus, where it disintegrates. There may be a light bleed when the fertilized egg burrows itself inside the uterus. Don’t worry as this is considered normal, because it’s during your regular period.
You now have an idea on how conception works and what is considered a fertile period. If you decide to become a mother, there are a lot of things you have to do.
Firstly, keep a track of your periods and stop using contraception.
Start taking pre natal vitamins – it’s advised to take supplements like folic acid at least two months before you fall pregnant. Folic acid will make sure the spine of your baby is healthy and strong. The recommended dosage for folic acid is 500mcg a day.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle with a diet rich in beneficial nutrients and regular exercise.
If you are on prescription medicines, check with your doctor before you discontinue them.
Make sure you have regular medical check ups and get your immunization shots.
If you are a smoker or someone who uses recreational drugs, it’s time to consider quitting the habit. It’s a good idea for overweight women to consult a doctor for a healthy regimen to get fit.
Although one tends to get excited about the new and in many cases much awaited pregnancy, the most important thing in week one is to relax and focus on what is good for your mind and body.