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Pregnancy, also known as gestation, is the time during which one or more offspring develops inside a woman. A multiple pregnancy involves more than one offspring, such as with twins. Pregnancy usually occurs by sexual intercourse, but can also occur through assisted reproductive technology procedures.
- Growth of The Baby
- Social Problems
- Pregnancy Problems
- Pregnancy Test
Pregnancy usually starts after a woman has sexual intercourse with a man. Her ovum (or egg) and his sperm (seed) come together and form a zygote(fertilized egg) inside her. Some people have trouble becoming pregnant. This is called infertility. Women and men with infertility may take drugs or have surgery to help a pregnancy start. Some people use treatments that are not natural, like in vitro fertilization, to become pregnant with the help of a doctor.
When the woman's egg and the man's seed come together, it makes one cell called a zygote. The zygote grows into an embryo, which grows into a fetus. When the fetus is ready, the baby is born. 1. Embryo at 4 weeks after fertilization 2. Fetus at 8 weeks after fertilization 3. Fetus at 18 weeks after fertilization 4. Fetus at 38 weeks after fertilization 1. Relative size in 1st month (simplified illustration) 2. Relative size in 3rd month (simplified illustration) 3. Relative size in 5th month (simplified illustration) 4. Relative size in 9th month (simplified illustration)
Human pregnancy is divided into three parts called trimesters. A trimester is about three months long. During the first trimester, the woman might feel ill in her stomach. She might have to urinate often. During the second trimester, the woman's abdomenstarts to stick out. During the third trimester, her abdomen sticks out even more, and she becomes even heavier.
At the end of a full pregnancy, the woman's body pushes the baby out through her vagina. This is called delivering a baby or giving birth. Mothers can get help for birth from a midwife, nurse, or doctor. In some places, mothers give birth at home. In other places, mothers give birth in a hospital. Mothers who are ill or hurt may need to go to a hospital. Giving birth can hurt a lot at the end. In hospitals, a doctor or midwife can give drugs to the mother to reduce the pain. If the baby cannot be pushed out, then a doctor can cut the mother open to take the baby out. This operation is called a Caesarean section.
The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women says that pregnant women must be given time away from work or equal welfarefor her baby without losing her job (Article 11).
Sometimes there are problems with pregnancies. A miscarriage (spontaneous abortion) is when the baby dies before it is born. A stillbirthis when the baby is dead when it is born. There are also diseases caused by pregnancy. Sometimes, women die from giving birth. In developed countries, this is much less common than it used to be. Every year, about 500,000 women die from giving birth, while about 7,000,000 mothers have big problems from giving birth. For example, giving birth can tear the mother's body and cause an obstetric fistula.
A pregnancy can also stop without the baby being born. This is called abortion. Doctors can do things that will stop a pregnancy. Such an abortion is called induced abortion. Countries have different laws about induced abortions. Some countries allow it, and others do not. In some countries, it is allowed, but only for certain reasons, such as the pregnancy resulting from rape, or a doctor saying that the pregnant woman might die if the pregnancy is not stopped. People also have different opinions about abortion. Often, these are influenced by religious beliefs. There are a few diseasesthat can kill a woman or make her very ill if she has a baby. Having abortions could save the lives or health of these mothers.
A pregnancy test is something that women use to tell whether they are pregnant. The woman urinates on the stick. If the woman is pregnant, a plus sign or two lines will appear on the stick.If the woman is not pregnant, then a minus sign or one line will appear on the stick.
Signs and symptoms of pregnancy typically change as pregnancy progresses, although several symptoms may be present throughout. Depending on severity, common symptoms in pregnancy can develop into complications). Pregnancy symptoms may be categorized based on trimester as well as region of the body affected.
- Fertilization and implantation
In mammals, pregnancy is the period of reproduction during which a female carries one or more live offspring from implantation in the uterus through gestation. It begins when a fertilized zygote implants in the female's uterus, and ends once it leaves the uterus.
During copulation, the male inseminates the female. The spermatozoon fertilizes an ovum or various ova in the uterus or fallopian tubes, and this results in one or multiple zygotes. Sometimes, a zygote can be created by humans outside of the animal's body in the artificial process of in-vitro fertilization. After fertilization, the newly formed zygote then begins to divide through mitosis, forming an embryo, which implants in the female's endometrium. At this time, the embryo usually consists of
A blastocele is a small cavity on the center of the embryo, and the developing embryonary cells will grow around it. Then, a flat layer cell forms on the exterior of this cavity, and the zona pellucida, the blastocyst's barrier, remains the same size as before. Cells grow increas
The cells surrounding the blastocyst now destroy cells in the uterine lining, forming small pools of blood, which in turn stimulate the production of capillaries. This is the first stage in the growth of the placenta. The inner cell mass of the blastocyst divides rapidly, forming
Following this, a narrow line of cells appears on the surface on the embryo. Its growth makes the embryo undergo gastrulation, in which the three primary tissue layers of the fetus, the ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm, develop. The narrow line of cells begin to form the endoderm
- Risk Factors
- Teenage Fatherhood
- Society and Culture
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The age of the mother is determined by the easily verified date when the pregnancy ends, not by the estimated date of conception. Consequently, the statistics do not include pregnancies that began at age 19, but that ended on or after the woman's 20th birthday. Similarly, statistics on the mother's marital status are determined by whether she is married at the end of the pregnancy, not at the time of conception.
Teenage pregnancy (with conceptions normally involving girls between age 16 and 19), was far more normal in previous centuries, and common in developed countries in the 20th century. Among Norwegian women born in the early 1950s, nearly a quarter became teenage mothers by the early 1970s. However, the rates have steadily declined throughout the developed world since that 20th century peak. Among those born in Norway in the late 1970s, less than 10% became teenage mothers, and rates have fallen since then. In the United States, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Actof 1996 included the objective of reducing the number of young Black and Latina single mothers on welfare, which became the foundation for teenage pregnancy prevention in the United States and the founding of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, now known as Power to Decide.
According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), "Pregnancies among girls less than 18 years of age have irreparable consequences. It violates the rights of girls, with life-threatening consequences in terms of sexual and reproductive health, and poses high development costs for communities, particularly in perpetuating the cycle of poverty." Health consequences include not yet being physically ready for pregnancy and childbirth leading to complications and malnutrition as the majority of adolescents tend to come from lower-income households. The risk of maternal death for girls under age 15 in low and middle income countries is higher than for women in their twenties.Teenage pregnancy also affects girls' education and income potential as many are forced to drop out of school which ultimately threatens future opportunities and economic prospects. Several studies have examined the socioeconomic, medical, and psychological impact of pregnancy and parenthood in teens. Life outc...
Rates of teenage pregnancies are higher in societies where it is traditional for girls to marry young and where they are encouraged to bear children as soon as they are able. For example, in some sub-Saharan African countries, early pregnancy is often seen as a blessing because it is proof of the young woman's fertility. Countries where teenage marriages are common experience higher levels of teenage pregnancies. In the Indian subcontinent, early marriage and pregnancy is more common in tradi...
Other family members
Teen pregnancy and motherhood can influence younger siblings. One study found that the younger sisters of teen mothers were less likely to emphasize the importance of education and employment and more likely to accept human sexual behavior, parenting, and marriage at younger ages. Younger brothers, too, were found to be more tolerant of non-marital and early births, in addition to being more susceptible to high-risk behaviors. If the younger sisters of teenage parents babysit the children, th...
In most countries, most males experience sexual intercourse for the first time before their 20th birthday.Males in Western developed countries have sex for the first time sooner than in undeveloped and culturally conservative countries such as sub-Saharan Africa and much of Asia. In a 2005 Kaiser Family Foundation study of US teenagers, 29% of teens reported feeling pressure to have sex, 33% of sexually active teens reported "being in a relationship where they felt things were moving too fast...
Comprehensive sex education and access to birth control appear to reduce unplanned teenage pregnancy.It is unclear which type of intervention is most effective. In the US free access to a long acting form of reversible birth control along with education decreased the rates of teen pregnancies by around 80% and the rate of abortions by more than 75%.Currently there are four federal programs aimed at preventing teenage pregnancy: Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP), Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP), Title V Sexual Risk Avoidance Education, and Sexual Risk Avoidance Education.
In reporting teenage pregnancy rates, the number of pregnancies per 1,000 females aged 15 to 19 when the pregnancy ends is generally used. Worldwide, teenage pregnancy rates range from 143 per 1,000 in some sub-Saharan African countries to 2.9 per 1,000 in South Korea. In the US, 82% of pregnancies in those between 15 and 19 are unplanned. Among OECD developed countries, the US, the UK and New Zealand have the highest level of teenage pregnancy, while Japan and South Korea have the lowest in 2001. According to the UNFPA, “In every region of the world – including high-income countries – girls who are poor, poorly educated or living in rural areas are at greater risk of becoming pregnant than those who are wealthier, well-educated or urban. This is true on a global level, as well: 95 per cent of the world’s births to adolescents (aged 15–19) take place in developing countries. Every year, some 3 million girls in this age bracket resort to unsafe abortions, risking their lives and heal...
In some cases, the father of the child is the husband of the teenage girl. The conception may occur within wedlock, or the pregnancy itself may precipitate the marriage (the so-called shotgun wedding). In countries such as India, the majority of teenage births occur within marriage. In other countries, such as the US and Ireland, the majority of teenage mothers are not married to the father of their children. In the UK, half of all teenagers with children are lone parents, 40% are cohabitating as a couple and 10% are married. Teenage parents are frequently in a romantic relationship at the time of birth, but many adolescent fathers do not stay with the mother and this often disrupts their relationship with the child. US surveys tend to under-report the prevalence of teen fatherhood.In many cases, "teenage father" may be a misnomer. Studies by the Population Reference Bureau and the National Center for Health Statistics found that about two-thirds of births to teenage girls in the US...
Some politicians condemn pregnancy in unmarried teenagers as a drain on taxpayers, if the mothers and children receive welfare payments and social housing from the government.Teen Pregnancy at CurlieTeen Pregnancy Prevention at Curlie
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- Maternal problems
- Fetal and placental problems
- General risk factors
Complications of pregnancy are health problems that are related to pregnancy. Complications that occur primarily during childbirth are termed obstetric labor complications, and problems that occur primarily after childbirth are termed puerperal disorders. Severe complications of pregnancy, childbirth, and the puerperium are present in 1.6% of mothers in the US, and in 1.5% of mothers in Canada. In the immediate postpartum period, 87% to 94% of women report at least one health problem. Long-term
The following problems originate mainly in the mother.
The following problems occur in the fetus or placenta, but may have serious consequences on the mother as well.
Factors increasing the risk of pregnancy complications beyond the normal level of risk may be present in the pregnant individual's medical profile either before they become pregnant or during the pregnancy. These pre-existing factors may related to the individual's genetics, physical or mental health, their environment and social issues, or a combination of those.