Pregnancy is a period of time in which a woman develops a child in her uterus over the course of nine months. These nine months are divided into three trimesters of development, each about 12 or 13 weeks long.
The first trimester last 12 weeks and technically begins on the first day of a woman's last period - two weeks before she's actually pregnant. Pregnancy begins when a woman's egg is fertilized, becoming an embryo. After the embryo-turned-zygote-turned-blastocyst implants in her uterus, she will be able to determine with a test whether or not she is pregnant. However, many women claim they feel the hormonal changes that take place during the early stages of pregnancy well before they miss their first period and take a test.
Once a woman knows she's pregnant, she should make an appointment with a health care provider, who will be able to advise the woman on how being pregnant will change her lifestyle. Health care providers should also discuss a woman's optimal weight gain, exercising precautions and any diet changes she should be aware of.
The first trimester is marked for its symptoms of food cravings and aversions, bouts of nausea, headaches, swollen and discoloring of breasts and a roller coaster of emotional mood swings characteristic of the hormonal changes that accompany pregnancy.
The second trimester is mellow in comparison and is an exciting time for development, as the gender of the baby may be determined, he or she may begin to explore the woman's uterus and he or she will also have the ability to "hear" noises. This is also the time when a woman will begin to show her pregnancy and gain weight.
The third trimester is spent in preparation for delivery as the child finishes his or her development.
Not every pregnancy comes at a time when a woman has enough resources to enable her to care for the child after birth, and this brings many women to consider adoption as an alternative to abortion or becoming a single parent or young mother.
After a nine-month commitment to being pregnant, many women want to know they're placing the child in a loving household that they could or did not wish to provide at the time of birth. Therefore, it's important for women to feel comfortable in their decision to place and this means understanding how involved they want to be in the process and how that could affect their decision.
See Also: unplanned pregnancy, teen pregnancy, crisis pregnancy, crisis pregnancy center, pregnancy counseling, pregnancy test, unwanted pregnancy, pregnancy advice, pregnancy counselor, terminating your pregnancy
US Pregnancy Rate Reaches 12-Year Low
The U.S. pregnancy rate has fallen almost continuously over the last decade, and reached a 12-year low in 2009, according to a new government report. Researchers analyzed information on U.S. pregnancy rates for women ages 15 to 44 over the last two decades, with 2009 being the most recent year with...U.S. Pregnancy Rates Continue to Fall
Title: U.S. Pregnancy Rates Continue to Fall Category: Health News Created: 12/5/2013 9:35:00 AM Last Editorial Review: 12/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
Wonkblog: Five startling facts about pregnancy and abortion in America
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