Pregnancy is one of the few experiences that continue to remain vague and mysterious to many new mothers. There are a number of things that any new or expectant mother needs to know about pregnancy and perhaps one of the most important of these facts is information regarding the stages of pregnancy.
Finding out as much information as you can regarding the stages through which a pregnancy develops helps both the expectant mothers as well as their spouses to better prepare for each stage and fully understand how to best handle the changes that come with each stage.
A normal pregnancy is supposed to last for a period of about nine months. This applies to all normal pregnancies, regardless of whether the expectant mother is carrying a single baby, twins, triplets or even the mothers of quadruplets. The nine months are divided into three stages of three months each.
These make up the three stages of pregnancy, each unique in some manner from the rest and lasting for around 3 months. Each of these stages is referred to as a trimester and therefore, in general terms, one can say that pregnancy develops over three semesters.
Other three are named according to the order in which they take place. As such, we have the first trimester, the second and finally the third trimester. The subsequent parts of this article will examine each of these stages in some detail so as to shed better light on the same.
The 3 stages of pregnancy
The first trimester
This period is in the earliest stages of pregnancy and covers the time from conception to between three and three and a half months of the pregnancy period, or in simpler terms, it lasts for 14 weeks.
It is during this time that most expectant mothers tend to experience morning sickness that is symptomized by nausea and vomiting. It is precisely for this reason that the symptoms of morning sickness are generally considered to be a sign of pregnancy. In addition to the morning sickness, the expectant women also develop enlarged breasts in preparation for the baby.
The second trimester
This is the second of the 3 stages of pregnancy and begins from the time the first trimester ends. It generally lasts from then till the end of the 7th month of the pregnancy. For most expectant women, this stage is usually the easiest. This is because at this time, they have settled down to the idea of motherhood and regaining most of their lost energy. Visible changes at this stage include the expansion of the stomach as well as the dissipation or fading of the symptoms of morning sickness. The baby may also begin kicking at this stage.
The third trimester
This is the last of the 3 stages of pregnancy and is generally the most taxing. Physically, the baby in the womb seems to increase in weight and causes a lot off pains in the backs of the pregnant women. This period is usually a very emotional time and it is considered normal for the pregnant mothers to become more sensitive and anxious.