The confirmation of pregnancy happens when your Ob-gyn confirms your pregnancy following a positive blood test. The first sign of pregnancy is when you miss your period and have had a positive result on your at-home pregnancy test. Official confirmation, however, is with a blood test and you will also see certain signs and symptoms in addition to a positive result on the at-home test.
Dating a pregnancy accurately is vital for a happy & safe outcome of your pregnancy term. There are three primary methods of dating a pregnancy. Primarily, it is dated from the first day of your last menstrual period with a term of 280 days or roughly 40 weeks. However, in most cases, babies will have their own timetable and you can expect a full-term pregnancy to last anywhere between 37 to 42 weeks.
However, in most cases nowadays the cycles are irregular, and it may not always be an accurate method to go by the last menstrual cycle. In such cases, gynecologists will determine the pregnancy term and tentative day by an ultrasound method, which is far more accurate.
Firstly, it must be underlined that pregnancy is a normal stage and course for a woman. Nature has adequately prepared her for the rigors of pregnancy and whatever happens during the course of the term is perfectly normal. Having said that, it is also important to note that pregnancy is also a fragile period for the mother-to-be, it is not just a physiological phenomenon but also an emotional rollercoaster that she is riding.
The spouse and immediate family must be prepared and be willing to lend the necessary emotional support for a woman during the course of her pregnancy. In addition to emotional support, it is important to adhere to the following
- Healthy diet
- Regular physical exercise
- Frequent doctor visits
- Timely medication
- Avoiding high-risk lifestyle
High-risk lifestyle includes indulging in smoking & alcohol consumption, unhealthy eating habits, lack of sleep and rest, and others.
The finale of a pregnancy term is labour when the child descends down into the birth canal and is ready to step out into the world. It is certainly an anxious period accompanied by pain & difficulty, but the end-result is certainly overwhelming for anyone. While there is nothing that can prepare one for the pain of labour, painless mechanisms do make it easier to deal with it. Some of the key aspects to having a relatively easy labour is to be as well-informed as possible, expect possible challenges, prepare for contingencies and ensure that the suppose is available for emotional support.
Preparation for childbirth is both a physical as well as an emotional exercise. Firstly, from a physical preparation point of view – have a through and clear discussion with your obstetrician and gynecologist on how childbirth will happen. Especially, if you are a first-time parent, this discussion is vital for you to be well-aware, informed and prepared.
Secondly, discuss the mode of delivery well in advance. Would you need a C-section, an epidural, a normal delivery – should be discussed in advance. While, eventually in a contingency the plans may well change, but it is advisable to have a plan, nevertheless.
It would be ideal for both the parents to undertake childbirth preparatory classes. Especially for first-time parents. This helps you get yourself oriented not just to the labor and childbirth aspects but also you the neonatal care that is expected of you. From breastfeeding, understanding the child’s reflexes and getting to grips with being a parent.
Yes, as noted above pregnancy should be treated as a normal course of life. Certainly, exercise and daily routines are helpful as they not only reduce the risk of excessive pregnancy weight but also lend a sense of normalcy to the woman. Becoming sedentary and completely avoiding any physical activity can prove to be counterproductive and may make the pregnancy more risk than it actually is. Simple everyday tasks at home, a brief exercise routine, and a light walk keeps the woman healthy and active for the impending childbirth.
The roles of fathers have evolved to a great extent over the last few decades. We have begun to see more involved and more attached spouses during the pregnancy term, and this is a healthy trend all around. Pregnancy is not just a one-way street for the woman to deal with, in fact a healthy pregnancy involves the father as much. If the onus of the physical aspect of the pregnancy rests on the woman, the spouse must take the lead in dealing with the emotional aspect of the pregnancy.
Lending emotional support, understanding the needs & requirements for a childbirth and infant care and overall walking the journey of pregnancy together is beneficial not just in the parental journey but also makes for healthier relationships. The active & involved support of the spouse is the best emotional anchor that a pregnant woman can have, and to be able to provide her one ought to be the first priority for every husband.