Baby development: How a baby grows in the mother’s womb during pregnancy
Pregnancy is a wonderful experience. It gives an opportunity for women to nurture a life inside her for nine months. A woman feels complete after delivering her baby. Pregnancy transforms a girl to a mother.
The growth of the baby in the mother’s womb is a wonder of nature. Day by day the baby is transformed from a single cell to a perfectly formed little human being. Pregnancy lasts for 40 weeks.
Although medical practitioners begin counting from the first day of your last period, the baby’s life does not begin till the moment of conception. Conception is the moment when the egg is fertilized by a sperm.
Babies develop at different rates. Here is a brief overview of what usually happens from conception to birth.
The baby’s genetic blueprint is set the very moment the egg is fertilized. At this crucial moment, its sex, height, color of the eyes, color of the hair, etc are decided. The mother’s body would have started to make amniotic fluid to cushion the baby. By the end of the first month, the baby’s heart beat can be detected. This is the sign of a new life. The baby would be the size of a grain of rice by the end of the first month.
By now the major organs like lungs, heart and kidneys are in place. They keep developing as time goes by. The baby’s facial features begin to form. The chin will be attached to the chest.
Around this time the baby would the size of a cashew nut. The head grows very quickly. As a result of this, the baby will be top heavy. The mother should consume 400 mcg of folic acid every day. This protects her from getting affected by medical conditions like spina bifida.
The baby is the size of a lime around this time. The face begins to resemble that of a human being. However the skin would still be transparent. Sex organs begin to develop; however, it would be difficult to identify the sex. After three months, the baby will be less susceptible to infections. Also after crossing this milestone, the risk of miscarriage reduces substantially.
The placenta would be fully formed by now. Baby would be obtaining oxygen and all the nutrients with its help. By now the baby would have developed the ability to suck the thumb and to curl fingers and toes.
The baby grows very quickly during this month. By the end of the month, the baby would be the size of an avocado. Tiny finger and toe nails begin to appear. Hair, eyebrows and eyelashes begin to grow. Lanugo (find downy hair) appears all over the body. This helps to regulate the baby’s body temperature.
The mother is halfway through her pregnancy. In spite of this fact the baby would be just a fraction of its birth weight. Around this time the baby looks skinny. It weighs around 0.28 kg around this time.
The baby will begin to put on weight from now on. It will add around 56 grams per week. This is because of muscles, ligaments and fat. The baby’s skin would be coated with a greasy substance known as vernix.
This vernix protects the baby from drying effect of the amniotic fluid in which it would be floating. By now the baby’s senses (smell, taste, hearing, sight and touch) would be developed.
A baby is something you carry inside you for nine months, in your arms for three years, and in your heart until the day you die.— Mary Mason
By now the baby is well formed. Even if it is born now, it will survive. Even though eyes would not be open yet, it can sense light and darkness. The baby will be very active around this time. This is because it would be trying to gain control over its limbs. It is also because there would be enough space to move around.
The baby will put on weight very quickly during this month. It begins to prepare itself for life outside the mother’s womb. Lungs would be fully developed and produce a substance known as surfactant. This substance helps them to mature.
The baby’s brain would be matured by now. It would be able to regulate the body temperature. At this stage the nerve cells in the brain begin to develop very quickly. It is a really exciting phase.
By now, the baby feels congested in the mother’s womb. Movements would reduce. The baby’s lanugo and vernix disappear. Its intestine fills with a green, tar-like substance known as meconium. All the organs begin to develop. The baby begins to pass water. The skin would be paler and less wrinkled.
This is the final month of pregnancy. This month sees the baby fatten up. The baby prepared to venture out of its mother’s womb. The baby’s body would be settled upside down with the head engaged to the mother’s pelvis. The baby may come out of the mother’s womb any day during the month.
During pregnancy, the mother has to take good care of herself. She is not just responsible for herself, but for another life inside her. People around her should treat her with great love and care.
Woman in the Ninth Month of Her Pregnancy
Development of a baby
- Baby Development in the Womb | Stages of Gestation, cycle, growth
Ultrasounds, pictures, and information on baby development in the womb. Track the stages of gestation, growth of fingers, hair, heart beat, and more. When does life begin? Science says at the moment of conception.
If there is a pregnant woman in your home, treat her like an angel. Shower her with love and care.
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