What happens in the first two weeks of pregnancy?
The first day of your pregnancy is calculated from the first day of your last period. But in reality, you’re not actually pregnant yet. Every month, your body prepares itself for pregnancy and gets ready to release an egg. The lining of your uterus thickens in order to feed and accommodate your egg when it’s fertilised. Depending on the length of your menstrual cycle, you typically release an egg (ovulate) two weeks after the first day of your period.
What happens during conception?
Although day one of your last period counts as the first day of your pregnancy, conception is the moment you actually get pregnant. This happens when a sperm fertilises your egg in the fallopian tube. After your egg is fertilised, it travels to your uterus (womb) and settles into the lining. This process can take up to eight days and is known as implantation. During this time, you may notice some light bleeding. What’s more, your egg has now grown and developed into an embryo.
What happens to your body in these first few weeks?
With all this going on inside your body, many women may begin notice some changes. Missing your period is usually one of the first signs of pregnancy. Other signs include tender breasts, morning sickness, feeling tired and needing to urinate more often.
Now you’re aware of what happens when you first become pregnant, you can look forward to the next nine months before your little one arrives.
How to calculate your pregnancy
Working out when your new-born will arrive can be a minefield. To help, we’ve made things nice and simple with our step by step guide to working out your due date.
How is my due date calculated?
To work out your due date, add 280 days (40 weeks) to the first day of your last menstrual period. This calculation tends to be more accurate if you have a regular menstrual cycle with periods every 28 days. Bear in mind that this is an estimate- there is no way for yourself or health professionals to tell exactly when you conceived. This is why day one of your last period counts as the first day of your pregnancy. Also, treat this date as a guide. Only a small proportion of births actually happen on the exact estimated due date. Normal pregnancies can last anywhere from 37 to 42 weeks.
What if I don’t know the date of my last period?
If you can’t remember when your last period first started or you have irregular periods, your first ultrasound scan will give you a better idea of when your baby is due. Known as the dating scan, it usually takes place between 8 to 14 weeks of pregnancy. The sonographer who performs the scan carefully looks at your baby’s measurements. From this, they can check the baby’s development and calculate the estimated date of delivery (EDD).
When you’re calculating your due date, keep in mind that every pregnancy is different. Babies come when they are ready, and when yours arrives it’ll be worth the wait.
You’ve had a positive result and it’s been confirmed that you’re in the early stages of pregnancy. But what now? If you’re newly pregnant or are trying to conceive, we’ve prepared a week-by-week guide to the first few weeks of pregnancy so you know what to expect when you’re expecting.
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