- Women's Health
Pregnancy Due Date And How To Calculate It
Nine months is all very well but you need to know exactly what your pregnancy due date is when you are expecting a baby. You need to know about the pregnancy calculator or what goes into calculating the date that your baby is due to be born. Granted, this date might not be adhered to absolutely but you still want to know the expected pregnancy due date.
So how does one go about calculating this date? 150 years or so ago, it was calculated by adding 7 days to the last missed menstrual period and then adding nine months to it. However, this was done on the assumption that the woman in question had absolutely regular menstrual periods of 28 days each time. Now this might be the ideal but it definitely is not true of all women.
Today, doctors tend to take a few more parameters into consideration before they set a due date on your pregnancy calendar. They could take the menstrual cycle, the sound of the fetal hear, the growth of the fetus and the time when ‘quickening’ or felt fetal movement occurs. They will also tell you that the pregnancy due date is only an estimate and one should be prepared for the baby to arrive from anytime two weeks before the date to two weeks after. So the date that is given to you is just that – a date of estimated arrival.
When you are under the regular care of the same gynecologist, he or she will be checking you every moth. Then, the measurement of the fetus, your weight and how you feel are strong indicators of how the pregnancy is coming along. Many doctors will be more specific about the pregnancy due date after they have observed you up to the beginning of Month 9.
AS far as calculations without taking all these individual factors into account are concerned, the old ‘add 7 days and then 9 months’ rule still applies. Once you get this date, then it’s up to the doctor to change it around depending on your periods, your pregnancy symptoms and on your baby’s growth. Very often, the fetus will ‘descend’ or come down in the abdomen around ten days before birth so doctors keep an eye open for this so they can prepare you. Of course, illness, shock and trauma can trigger off a sudden birth but in the normal course, the pregnancy due date you are given is around the time you will have your baby.