Pregnancy Week 4

 

The development of the offspring of a single cell stage to fully developed child within the womb of the mother is known as PREGNANCY. This is one of the spectacular moments in the life of a couple as it brings joys of welcoming a new member to the family and also prepares the father and the mother for the upcoming series of responsibilities.

 

The situation of pregnancy is generally not felt by the mother during the first three weeks. However during the fourth week, a mother becomes sure that she has conceived. Thus this week is significant in making the mother realize that she has conceived. Many physiological changes occur in the mother due to changes in the stages of the baby development.

 

Mother During 4th Week of Pregnancy

 

Fatigue Due to Energy Loss:  This week is characterized by the fatigue that the woman feels due to excess energy loss for the development of the baby. The symptoms that are observed within the mother are quite similar to the pre-menstrual phase. This is because the woman feels abdominal cramps and nausea etc. However, it has been seen that a number of women feel abdominal cramps. Thus they expect a normal menstrual flow. Surprisingly they are astonished with the non arrival with the menstrual periods that confirms the woman is pregnant. So it is important that one should be careful with the excess abdominal cramps, as these might indicate either normal menstrual period or pregnancy.

 

 

Secretion of Pregnancy Hormone:  During the fourth week, generally the baby implants itself deep into the wall of uterus. This followed by the formation of the placenta. So there are chances of the secretion of the pregnancy hormones during the later days of this week. The hormones are generally expelled out with the urine and perhaps it is the best time to check the pregnancy at home. Women who are expecting pregnancy can buy a pregnancy test kit and carry out the test with self help. The pregnancy test kit helps a woman to be confirmed about her conception. So if the test comes out to be positive, it indicates pregnancy. However there are several instances where the test may turn out to be negative. The negative test is not a clear confirmation. This is because there are some women in whom the pregnancy hormones are immediately not secreted during the fourth week. So the pregnancy test at home should also be carried out during the early phases of the fifth week.   

 

Implantation: With the implantation of the baby to wall of the uterus, a phenomenon called implantation bleeding is observed in most of the women signifying the onset of pregnancy. However the occurrence of such phenomenon is not so profound and if happens need not to be worried at all.

 

Stress: Stress plays an important factor for a woman to conceive. The importance of the stress can never be abandoned in this world of competition and rat race. If a woman wants to get pregnant she needs her body to get relaxed.

 

Morning Sickness and Urination: During this phase the mother has to go through stringent process of care, if pregnancy is confirmed. She needs to be sure of the metabolic changes like the loss of abdominal weight, morning sickness, and frequent urination.  Once she confirms pregnancy she should immediately visit a physician to get the dietary supplements and exercises prescribed.

 

 

Protein Rich Diet:  Food habits of the mother play an important role in the development of the baby. The mother now develops different kinds of taste due to the embryo growing inside. The mother should eat food like fresh vegetables, fruits, food containing high amount of protein and low amount of fat. Deeply fried foods are not recommended. The mother should have foods containing minerals like iron. This iron is highly useful for the development of the brain of the baby. So the mother should always have a balanced diet during pregnancy.

 

Workout During Pregnancy: Exercises are very important during pregnancy. A mother should be careful of her movements. This is because any sudden jerk may cause severe damage to the development of the baby. The generally recommended exercises are sit-ups, arm stretch etc. However it is advisable that a physician should be consulted before carrying out any such exercises.

 

Clothing: Clothing should be light coloured and loose garments should be chosen.

 

Test During the 4th Week:  As we all know pregnancy comes out with a series of tests, the most important and the basic test of the fourth week is the pregnancy test or urine test, to confirm the presence of pregnancy hormones in the urine.

 

Baby During 4th Week of Pregnancy

 

The baby initially starts the journey when it is only 0.14mm in size. Slowly and by the differentiation of the tissue, finally the baby completes the third week of the embryonic development. During the fourth week, baby starts implanting itself to the wall of the uterus. The placenta starts developing during time.

 

Placenta

A placenta is physical connection between a mother and her baby inside her womb. Scientifically this placenta can be explained as a long strip of tissues containing a network of blood vessels that provide the connection between the mother and the baby. These blood vessels continue up to the body of the baby through a cord like structure called umbilical cord.

 

 

Importance of Placenta

The placenta is of immense importance during pregnancy. The placenta transports materials like food, oxygen, antibodies from the body of the mother to the baby and in turn nitrogenous waste from the baby to the mother. The placenta also secretes a pregnancy hormone known as Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (HCG). This hormone gets mixed with the urine and forms a perfect detection system for the onset of pregnancy in women. During this fourth week, the baby gets enclosed within an embryo sac and remains surrounded by the amniotic fluid. This fluid acts as a shock absorber and protects the embryo from jerks and injuries.

 

By the end of the 4th week the baby is about 1mm in size and continues its journey for the next 36 weeks to develop into a child. The differentiation of sex is not profound during the fourth week. During the fourth week the baby starts developing its limbs, head by cellular differentiation and becomes a kidney shaped structure bent from crown to crump and connected in the abdominal portion by the umbilical cord.

 

ANY OTHER PREPARATION

 

Physician’s Consultation Mandatory: After the confirmation of pregnancy, it is the basic duty of the mother to get her checked by a doctor. She should also starts preparing by taking information about the specialists and the hospitals and the delivery services they provide. Decision pertaining to diet, birth process (i.e. whether normal labor or cesarean) should be done during the last phases of pregnancy with proper consultation of the doctor. If the mother does not want to be pregnant, she can opt for Medical Termination of Pregnancy during this week.

 

A session of amniocentesis (test of the foetal cells present in the amniotic fluid) should be carried out to analyze the genetic map of the baby, so that if there are certain genetic abnormalities within the baby, it may be treated write from the beginning.

 

DO’S

 

1. Eat light food.

 

2. Fresh vegetables and fruits should be a part of regular diet.

 

3. Iron containing food is essential for brain development of the baby.

 

4. Proper exercises according to the physician’s advice.

 

5. Should be careful while moving.

 

6. Exercises should be done regularly after consultation with the physician.

 

DON’T’S

 

1. Should not eat fried and spicy food during pregnancy.

 

2. Do not drink coffee as caffeine hampers foetal development.

 

3. Pain killers to mitigate headaches should be avoided.

 

4. Do not smoke during pregnancy. This because the nicotine particles diffuse in the mother’s blood stream, that flows into the baby through the placenta. The nicotine hampers the respiratory organs of the baby and shows profound harmful effects on the foetal development.

 

5. Abrupt movements are strictly prohibited during pregnancy.

 

DAD TO BE

 

 

Firstly the dads who smoke should not smoke in front of the mother. Due to passive smoking, the smoke can enter into the baby’s body via placenta thereby hampering his/her immune system. Dads should be the most caring about their wife and must be well acquainted with the appointments of specialist doctors. He must also make proper arrangement for immediate hospitalization in case of incidental labor pain. Dads should be in track within the symptoms that are visible within the mother and should have frequent consultation with the doctor that he has chosen for his child, if any abnormalities persist. 



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