Early Pregnancy Signs & Symptoms
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If you think you may be expecting, it's great to be on the lookout for early pregnancy symptoms. Watch this video to learn more about the earliest signs of pregnancy.
Transcript: Whether you're praying for a baby, or petrified that you might have made one, there are plenty of early...
Whether you're praying for a baby, or petrified that you might have made one, there are plenty of early signs to watch for. It is almost impossible to know for certain if you are pregnant until you take a pregnancy test - but a pregnancy test won't provide accurate results if you take it too soon. That's because a pregnancy test measures urine levels of human chorionic gonadatropin, or hCG, a hormone produced by the placenta during pregnancy, and... because levels of hCG are usually too minute to measure immediately after conception, a false negative result is possible at this point. In fact, a home pregnancy test will not provide reliable results until - at the absolute soonest - about four days before your next period is due. The later you take the test, the less likely a false negative becomes. Although you may need to wait a couple of weeks before taking a pregnancy test, that doesn't mean that there aren't other signs of pregnancy to look for in the meantime. While not every pregnant woman experiences symptoms during their first month, most do notice some changes - even before their first missed period. For example, as early as two days after you conceive, your breasts may suddenly feel extremely swollen and tender to the touch. Wait another five to ten days and you may notice a light to medium pink discharge on your underwear. This is called implantation bleeding, and occurs when the fertilized egg burrows into your uterine wall. In the following weeks, many women notice other symptoms, including fatigue, bloating, and an ever increasing need to urinate. Morning sickness, which hits 80% of women eventually, can also strike an unlucky few in their first several weeks of pregnancy. If you're pregnant, the second week after conception may also bring another change to your breasts: A darkening of your nipples' areolas. And of course, if your period is late, that's a clear sign that you may be pregnant. No matter what the symptoms might suggest, the only way to know for sure is to take a pregnancy test. If you do get a positive reading, it's 99-percent likely that you are indeed expecting, and should visit your Ob/Gyn as soon as possible. Your physician can do a blood test, urine analysis, or even an early ultrasound to confirm your pregnancy.More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-15 | Tags »
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Calculating your due date is simple if you remember the date of your last period. Watch this video to find out how this date is important in the calculation.
Transcript: Congratulations-you're pregnant! But how will you know when to expect your bundle of joy? Once your pregnancy...
Congratulations-you're pregnant! But how will you know when to expect your bundle of joy? Once your pregnancy has been confirmed, what you most want to know is your due date. Luckily, calculating your baby's due date is pretty easy to do at home. The average length of a pregnancy is 40 weeks, or 280 days, from the FIRST day of the LAST menstrual period, or LMP. Calculating the due date, or expected date of delivery, for a pregnancy is quite simple, then, if you know that date. Simply add nine months and seven days to the date, and you've got your pregnancy due date.Here's an example of how it works: say the first day of the last normal menstrual period was February 1st. Add seven days to that number, and you get February 8th. Add nine months, and you get November. The expected due date of that pregnancy, then, is November 8.Many factors play into determining the exact day you may have conceived. If your cycle length is irregular, you may not be able to use the first day of your last menstrual period as a marker. And similarly, if you have no idea when your last period was, don't worry!In these types of circumstances, your doctor will likely use an early ultrasound to measure the fetus' size and thus determine its gestational age. You may be wondering why you use your period, and not the day you CONCEIVED the baby, as a starting point. This is because it's rarely possible to gauge the PRECISE day that you got pregnant. After all, your ovulation schedule may be unpredictable, and sperm can live inside you for a few days. Remember, though, that your baby's estimated due date is just that-an estimate. In fact, only 5% of babies make their debut on the EXACT day predicted for their birth! So don't worry if your baby is born before or after that big X on your calendar.More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-15 | Tags »
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You can increase yourchances of conception by knowing your ovulation cycle. Check out this video to learn the best time to conceive.
Transcript: A woman's chances of getting pregnant change dramatically throughout her menstrual cycle - in fact, you...
A woman's chances of getting pregnant change dramatically throughout her menstrual cycle - in fact, you are over thirty times more likely to conceive if you have sex at the right time! Whether you're trying to get pregnant - or trying not to get pregnant - it's critical to understand how your ovulation cycle affects your fertility. Ovulation occurs when an egg is released from a woman's ovary, and is pushed down the fallopian tube, making it available to be fertilized. Ovulation and menstruation are both part of a woman's monthly cycle - in fact, menstruation is the process that the female body uses to shed the egg released during ovulation if it isn't fertilized. Women are most fertile when they are ovulating, so the probability of unprotected sex leading to pregnancy changes throughout the course of a woman's monthly cycle. When a woman is at her most fertile, just before she ovulates, unprotected sex with a healthy partner will result in pregnancy 30% of the time! But on average, the likelihood of unprotected sex leading to pregnancy is much smaller - between 3% and 5%. Women ovulate at different times in their monthly cycle, so if you don't know exactly when you're ovulating, this chart can still tell you what the average risk of pregnancy is on each day of your cycle. Day one is the day when a woman starts bleeding. For most women, the chances of getting pregnant from having unprotected sex once during the first five to seven days of the cycle is under 1%. From the seventh day to the twenty first day of a woman's cycle her chances of getting pregnant rise dramatically. Most women ovulate during this two week period. As a result, the average woman's chance of getting pregnant from having unprotected sex just one time is more than 4% from day 9 to day 19 of her cycle, and is over 8% from day 12 to day 14 of her cycle. After the 21st day of the cycle, most women have less than a 2% chance of getting pregnant each time they have unprotected sex. Remember - a woman's actual chance of getting pregnant on any given day of her cycle depends on when she actually ovulates. But even if you don't know when you're ovulating, these statistics can provide you with some good guidelines. If you're trying to conceive, these guidelines may help - but you'll improve your chances by determining when you're actually ovulating. And, if you don't want to get pregnant, this information might be interesting, but it's definitely no substitute for birth control!More »
Last Modified: 2012-12-12 | Tags »
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