A normal pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks and is grouped into three stages, or trimesters.
Symptoms and early signs of pregnancy include the absence of menstrual periods
• breast changes
• mood swings
• other symptoms.
A pregnancy test measures the level of hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) in the urine or blood. The test may be positive before the first signs of pregnancy develop in some women.
Symptoms of late pregnancy can include
• difficulty sleeping
• swelling of the ankles or fingers
• mild contractions.
Many of these symptoms result from the weight gain and enlarging uterus in late pregnancy.
By the end of 37 weeks, a baby is considered full term and its organs are ready to function on their own.
As you near your due date, your baby may turn into a head-down position for birth. Most babies "present" head down.
Babies at birth typically weigh between 6 pounds 2 ounces and 9 pounds 2 ounces and are 19 to 21 inches long.
Most full-term babies fall within these ranges.
If you've decided that you're ready to have a baby, you want to make sure your little one arrives safe and sound. Start by making an appointment for a prepregnancy checkup. You should have this visit up to a year before you want to get pregnant, even if this isn't your first pregnancy.
Your Prepregnancy Checkup
By seeing your doctor, you can be certain your health is good. This will raise your chances for a safe pregnancy and a healthy baby, says Grace Lau, MD, an ob-gyn at NYU Langone Medical Center.
It's helpful to know what to expect, because the checkup involves more than a physical exam.
It's a conversation. Your doctor will want to talk with you about:
Your personal and family medical history
Your vaccination history. You may need to look this up before your visit.
Your lifestyle habits:
Smoking, alcohol use, and any illegal drug use
What medications you use. Certain medicines can cause birth defects, so your doctor may recommend stopping or changing some of the meds you take.
What you can do to improve your chances of conceiving
It's a health check. Your doctor will give you a thorough workup, including: Breast exam
Depending on your family and personal history, blood tests for:
Glucose (blood sugar)
Pelvic exam and Pap test
Your doctor will also check for any health issues that could affect your pregnancy. Some conditions may make it harder to get pregnant or put your baby at risk.