In the psychological profession, there are those that take part in Prenatal & Perinatal psychology. Individuals that seek to educate others about psychological development.
From the first moment that an individual learns that they are pregnant, there often times are a wide variety of emotions that are experienced by not only themselves but those closest to them. The sense of wonder as to how something like this could have happened but also, an equally felt sense of attention being paid to what the pregnancy would mean to their life, both in the present and going into both the labor and post-delivery, as well as their new child. Over the course of the 40 weeks that a woman experiences pregnancy, the psychological developments that occur are just as relevant, as the fetal developments that are occurring for their child. How psychological responses can be nurtured from the time of development and continue on through the rest of a lifetime. The stages of pregnancy are classified into three categories. According to Buzzle.com (2000-2009, 2010), they are;
Conception stage- The conception stage occurs in the first 2 weeks of pregnancy. What it implies is that the body is preparing itself for pregnancy and is taking the necessary steps in order to enhance the process. A prenatal development week by week study shows that in these first 2 weeks the body grows a thick layer of blood perfused tissue in the womb. The process of conception takes about 2 weeks, and after that the egg reaches the uterus where it starts growing.
Embryonic stage- Once the egg has reached the uterus, the embryonic stage begins. This continues till about the 11th week of pregnancy, and is the most important of all the stages of prenatal development. The foundational development of the embryo begins in this stage, and as such, due care and precautions must be taken. By around the 4th week, the cellular division is in full flow, and the divisions are made between the cells that will make up the baby, and the cells that will make up the placenta. By the 6th week of pregnancy, the baby develops a heartbeat and arms and legs, so this is a very important stage of prenatal development. The process continues and by the 8th week the teeth and the intestines begin to form as well. By the time the embryonic stage ends at the 11th week, the child has started the development of all major organs, the central nervous system, various joints in the body, and the irises in the eyes.
Fetal Development- From the 11th week onwards, the child is called a fetus, and this stage is the last amongst the prenatal development timeline, and it ultimately culminates in the birth of the child. Till about the 16th week the fetus develops hair, nails, vocal cords, genitals, hardened bones, and a functioning liver and kidneys. By about the 20th week fat starts accumulating under the skin, the heart starts pumping more amounts of blood each day, and the baby also starts experiencing hiccups. Prenatal development then slows down a bit, and by the 24th week, the child has formed eyelids and eyebrows, and it weighs about 6 kilograms (1.3 pounds). The development then continues and slowly the lungs start developing, and by the 28th week the