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Giving birth to a new life is one of the greatest gifts of nature to all the living beings on earth. It's one feeling that's difficult to be put into words. Only a mother can feel and understand it, while all others, can simply marvel over this miraculous phenomenon.
The whole process of pregnancy and the fetus development is awe-inspiring. It vouches for nature's creativity in its finest of forms. Here let us understand in brief the whole process; right from conception to baby's birth. Have a look:
Every month, lots of eggs get ovulated and only one matures to make a place into the fallopian tube. Then comes millions of sperms, out of which, one manages to penetrate into the mature egg and fertilization takes place. In the next 24 hours of fertilization, the egg starts dividing speedily into many cells. The egg stays in the fallopian tube for nearly three days. The zygote (scientific name as given to the fertilized egg) continues to divide while passing slowly from the fallopian tube into the uterus. Once in the uterus, it attaches to the endometrium, the process is called implantation.
In three weeks, the zygote cells eventually form a little ball, known as embryo. The baby’s first nerve cells also get formed. Till the eighth week, the developing baby is addressed as an embryo and after the eighth week, till its birth, its called a fetus.
A water-tight sac forms around the fertilized egg. It is filled with fluid. This is termed as the amniotic sac. Then develops the placenta, that transfers nutrients from mother to baby, and also transfers wastes from baby. In this month, an undeveloped face forms. There will be large dark circles for the eyes. Mouth, throat and the lower jaw develop. Blood cells start taking shape, and the circulation begins. A tiny "heart" is formed that beats 65 times in a minute.
Second month marks the development of facial features. The ears grow as as little fold of skin. Tiny buds are formed that eventually grow into arms and legs. The fingers, toes and eyes too are under formation. The neural tube comprising of brain, and the spinal cord is formed. Development of the digestive tract and the sensory organs begin. The cartilage starts getting replaced by bones. At this stage, the head is a bit large as compared to the rest of the body.
The arms, hands, the fingers, feet, and the toes are now fully formed. Your baby can even open and close both its fist and mouth. External ear are formed and fingernails plus toenails also develop. Teeth also begin to develop. Reproductive organs too start to develop.
Baby's eyelids, nails, hair, eyebrows and eyelashes are formed. Its teeth and bone turn denser. You can even hear your baby’s heartbeat through an instrument known as doppler. The baby can suck its thumb, make faces, yawn, and even stretch.
The baby's movement become frequent. Hair grows on the head. The shoulders, back and the temples of baby remain covered with soft hair called lanugo. Skin gets covered with a whitish coating known as vernix caseosa. It protects baby’s skin from long exposure to amniotic fluid. It's shed right before birth.
The skin of baby is wrinkled, and red in color. Veins are clearly visible. Finger and toe prints too are visible. The eyelids start to part and the eyes open. Baby begins to respond to sounds either by moving or increasing pulse. Jerking motions occur when baby hiccups.
The baby is maturing. The hearing gets fully developed. It can even change position frequently. The amniotic fluid starts to curtail.
The baby starts kicking more. The brain develops at a faster pace. And the baby is able to see and hear. Although most of the internal systems get well formed, the lungs may take time to mature.
The lungs are quite developed. Your baby can blink, close eyes, turn its head, grasp soundly, and also respond to the sounds, light, as well as touch. It's all ready to enter the world!
The tight space won't allow the baby to move much. It will change position to prepare for the labor and delivery. Next it drops down in your pelvis. Generally, its head is down toward birth canal.