The First Trimester Checklist and a Step to Step Guide for a Happy Pregnancy

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“The instant of birth is exquisite. Pain and joy are one at this moment. Even after, the dim recollection is so sweet that we speak to our children with a gratitude they never understand.”

Madeline Tiger’s powerful summation of the miracle of childbirth has reverberated in the entire womankind for eons and continues to do so.

It is nature’s own opinion that life must go on, and its method is the most complicated mechanism to ensure that it does, yet leads to one of the simplest and most fulfilling joys that one can experience. The process is painful, tedious, and tiring for nine months, but the physical and psychological rewards are everlasting. The process leading to the birth is meticulously differentiated by three trimesters totally to forty weeks, each ranging from twelve to fourteen weeks, and are marked by specific fetal developments.

The first trimester is the most crucial for the baby’s development. For the first couple of weeks, in most of the cases, one is not aware of the pregnancy. It is only after some symptoms that start earthing like breast tenderness, fatigue, or morning sickness and the pregnancy test which gives her this life-changing knowledge.

By week 3, the baby’s size is that of a tiny ball, which is made of rapidly multiplying cells. A two-layered embryo and your primary placenta are developing by week 4 along with optic nerves and lenses, which keep on growing rapidly until week 5.

The baby’s nose, ears, and mouth begin to take shape by week 6, and a heartbeat can be heard usually during this time and by week 7, hands and feet begin to develop, the uterus doubles in size during this week.

By week 8, the baby decides to move about a bit and bother its mommy, i.e., the baby’s brain starts sending wiggling signals to the limbs. Skin begins forming between weeks 5 and 8, and the baby’s intestines start forming as well. The retina starts forming; the baby will have touch receptors on its face and develop taste buds.

By week 9, the baby starts looking more like a human and is almost an inch in size. Depending on the baby’s position in the uterus, the heartbeat can be heard more clearly by this week.

By week 10, the baby has finished the primary and most critical part of development, with organs and structures in place for further development.

By 11 weeks, the baby’s hands will open and close to make fists, and tooth buds start forming beneath the gums.

In week 12, the brain is multiplying, and kidneys can now excrete urine, and by the last week of the trimester, the baby has robust fingerprints and is about 3 inches long.

Tips to Deal with Nausea During Pregnancy

Eat your meals early, and also try to eat a light snack right before bed. It is also a good idea to have a little nocturnal nibble if you happen to wake up in the middle of the night to pee. •Try wearing sea-band wristlets – readily available at medical stores. •Tread gingerly. Ginger can help a case of the queasy. So, stock up on staples made with real ginger, such as ginger ale, ginger snaps, ginger tea, ginger candies, crystallized ginger, ginger biscuits, or ginger drinks. •When life gives you morning sickness, make lemonade. Another trick of the queasy trade is lemons.

During the first trimester, women undergo a lot of changes in her body. Some glow with good health, while others reek of misery. Some common changes that occur include bleeding; about 25% of pregnant women experience slight bleeding in their first trimester. Early on, spotting can be a sign that the embryo has implanted in the uterus.

The other change is of breast tenderness, which is triggered by hormonal changes due to the formation of milk ducts to feed the baby. The breasts are usually sore throughout the first trimester. Constipation occurs due to high hormone progesterone levels, which slows down muscle contraction that generally moves food through your system, coupled with the extra iron you get through your prenatal vitamins. This hormonal activity also leads to acid reflux and heartburn. There will be constant fatigue since your body is working hard to support a growing baby, and this fatigue coupled with changing hormones causes a lot of mood swings.

A female’s taste changes in the first trimester. There would be many foods likes and dislikes as it is reported that more than 60% of pregnant women have food cravings with more than half of the foods they don’t even like. The ever-growing uterus puts a lot of pressure on the bladder, leading to frequent urination during this time.

Morning sickness and weight gain are also some common symptoms that women undergo. This period is the most crucial period of pregnancy; hence there are some non-negotiable activities that women need to do to ensure smooth sailing during this period, which will eventually lead to the healthy development of the baby. For starters, it is necessary to take necessary supplements like calcium, folic acid, vitamin D, magnesium, probiotics, fish oil, etc., for the mother’s and the baby’s nourishment. Choose the correct practitioner for your needs since there will be a plethora of options to choose from.

Resting is of prime importance since the mother will encounter a lot of fatigue. The body will require fuel since it will be carrying precious cargo. Hence, the mother should make sure that she consumes only healthy food like leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, fish, seafood, dairy items like yogurt, lentils, eggs, etc., and stay away from processed food items. Light exercising is also essential, and have sex if you are in the mood to do so.

The absolute ‘no-nos’ include smoking, consumption of alcohol, recreational drugs, caffeine, raw meat, etc. Indulgence in things that would make a mother stressed should be avoided. It is essential to travel light, and it should not be exhaustive. This time is when your most beautiful creation takes form; hence, it is imperative to take utmost care of yourself because you have to care for another life taking from inside of you.

It is just the beginning of a long and arduous nine months, but taking the right steps would make it a happy and healthy one!

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