What To Expect

Ayana Roberson 2nd Hour 2/5/14

First Trimester

In the first trimester, the mother can expect many things to happen. She'll feel bouts of nausea, have tender, swollen breasts, and increased urination. She may also have fatigue, food cravings, dizziness, and heartburn. During the first trimester, the mother can have many different emotions. This is the time when there are apparent mood swings. The mother can feel delighted, anxious, exhilarated, exhausted, stressed, and worried.

For the baby, the first trimester is when many of their foundations for later structures begin to develop. The brain, spinal cord, heart, and other organs begin to form as well as their outermost layer of skin, CNS, PNS, eyes, and inner ear. Also, the foundation for muscles, bones, kidneys, most of the reproductive system, lungs, intestines and bladder begin to form. Some other developments during this time may include the heart beginning to pump blood, finger and toe formation, head becoming rounder, neck formation, red blood cell formation in the liver, external genitalia formation, and the development of finer nails. At this time, the baby is now considered a fetus, and by the end of the first trimester, the baby may be 2 1/2 inches long and weigh about 1/2 ounces.

Second Trimester

During the second trimester, the mother may continue to experience some changes to her body which is completely normal. These changes will be larger breasts, growing belly, skin changes like dark spots, and stretch marks. There will also be Braxton Hicks contractions, dizziness, nasal and gum problems, leg cramps, shortness of breath, vaginal discharge, and bladder and kidney infections. This is also the time when the mother can begin to feel the baby's movements which is called quickening. The emotions a mother may feel during the second trimester vary from the first. The emotions may include being less tired, heightened sexuality, feeling unattractive, or anticipation.

The second trimester for the baby is when more formations become apparent, and it's easy to tell what they are. The baby's sex becomes apparent, the skeleton forms bones, movement is coordinated, uterus forms, hair becomes visible, finger and footprints form, and finger nails develop. The baby also begins to form urine, have fat accumulation, begins to hear, and starts responding to your voice. By the end of the second trimester, the baby may have tripled in length since the first trimester.

Third Trimester

The third trimester continues to bring forth changes to the mother, physically and emotionally. There is continued breast growth, shortness of breath, vaginal discharge, and Braxton Hicks contractions. There is also weight gain, heart burn, swelling, spider veins, and frequent urination. Again, the emotions during the third trimester vary from the second just like the second varied from the first. The emotions the mother may experience includes anticipation, fear, excitement, concern, anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, joy, and a sense of being calm.

Large milestones for the baby occurs during the third trimester. The bones are fully developed, the CNS has matured and controls the body temperature, and the toenails are visible. The baby can now open its eyes, they practice breathing, have rapid weight gain, have a firm grasp, and can detect light. The is also the time when the placenta supplies the baby with antibodies, and before the mother knows it, the due date arrives. The baby may be 18-20 inches long and weigh about 6 1/2 pounds or more.

Advice for Fathers

We know that finding out you're about to become a father can be surprising news, and is sometimes hard to handle. Though it can be hard to handle, it's important for the father to be there for the mother through all three trimesters. The fathers have to be supportive in as many ways as possible. Whether that's financially, physically, and/or emotionally. The mothers just want you to be there to support and help them through this important time in your lives. And never forget the most important form of support, love.