Fetal Development During Pregnancy
Learn out about the phases of fetal development during the three trimesters of pregnancy.
A baby grows inside its mother's womb, slowly. As each month and trimester pass there the baby developes more and more.
During the first month of pregnancy the baby inside is considered to be an embryo. The embryo resembles a small fish or tadpole and does not yet look like a child at all. Limbs start to form which will slowly grow into arms and legs. The heart and lungs are also formed. By the end of the first month a heart beat can be detected. The embryo will weigh about 1 ounce at this time.
Though not completely developed, major organs are formed within the second month of pregnancy. The ears, ankles, wrists, and eyelids are formed. Fingers and toes are fully developed, and your baby starts to look like a tiny person. Weight remains the same.
Now called a fetus rather than an embryo, your baby continues its growth. In the third month nails will begin to form on fingers and toes, and the buds will form in the baby's mouth which will eventually become teeth. Your baby weighs slightly over an ounce now.
Movement will begin during the fourth month, you will only feel it slightly in beginning. As your baby moves and kicks it may only feel like gas, until your baby grows and becomes more active. Many doctors believe at this stage your baby can now hear your voice. The placenta is fully formed at this time. Weight is estimated to be about 5 ounces.
Now in the fifth month your baby becomes more active, and the movements are more noticably felt.
The baby will now sleep and wake at regular intervals. Your fetus will now start to grow rapidly. Weight could be about half a pound to a pound.
In the sixth month of pregnancy the baby will begin to grow small soft hairs. For the first time the eyelids will part, and its eyes will open.
The fetus can respond to light and sound during the seventh month of pregnancy. It can open and close eyes regularly on its own. The baby can now suck its thumb and cry. Your baby's movement may increase as it stratches and kicks more frequently. Weight is about three pounds now.
During the eighth month kicks will become stronger, as the baby cannot move as much due to its size. Now your baby is about 18 inches long weighing about 5 pounds.
Finally the lungs are ready to function own their own. Your baby will gain weight weekly now. During the ninth and last month your baby will drop down head first into the abdomen. When the baby drops you will know that delivery is near.