About Pregnancy and Birth
Giving birth to a child is one of life’s most intense experiences. And the nine months of pregnancy are an exciting time for many women and their partners. They may find their feelings ranging from joy and hope to worry and trepidation: How will everything go? Am I doing things right? How will life change once the baby has arrived?
From conception to birth, a woman’s body goes through a number of astonishing changes as it prepares to carry and grow a new life. A new organ, the placenta, is formed to provide the unborn child with everything he or she needs. The woman’s body retains more water, and a larger volume of blood circulates than before. Both of these changes become noticeable early on in the form of increased body weight.
The mammary glands prepare to produce milk, and connective tissue, ligaments, tendons and muscles become more flexible to allow for natural birth. All of these changes are triggered and maintained by hormones. During pregnancy, the body produces more hormones than it ever will at any other time.
The course of pregnancy
In early pregnancy, the physical changes are hardly noticeable. Skin can appear rosy because of increased circulation of blood. But most pregnant women notice that their body is changing: Many of them feel tired faster, their appetite changes, their breasts feel tender, and they may feel nauseous, especially in the morning (“morning sickness”)… Read more about Pregnancy