Understanding Pregnancy

A full-term pregnancy lasts approximately 40 weeks, counting from the first day of your last normal period. The weeks are split up into three trimesters. The first trimester includes weeks 1 through 12. The second trimester includes weeks 13 through 28. The third trimester includes weeks 29 through 40. At the moment of conception, your baby’s genes are already determined including sex, hair, eye color and more.
Learn more about pregnancy by watching videos that show the development of your baby week by week:

How could this happen to me? We used a contraceptive.

Even the most accurate forms of birth control will not prevent pregnancy 100% of the time.

Condoms for example can break due to many causes such as high heat, the type of lubricant used, or even its shelf life. With perfect use, you still have a chance of getting pregnant.

“The Pill” is another common form of birth control. This has a 5% failure rate. Pregnancy can occur if it is not taken correctly. Examples include taking the pills too late in your menstrual cycle; two or more pills missed in a row; not taking them in the correct order; even half a day late taking a lower dose pill; taking them while on antibiotics; being a heavy smoker; or being overweight. These can all increase your chances of getting pregnant.

There are many other types of birth control that you may have used. It is important to understand that even when used correctly, there is still a chance of getting pregnant.

Is the baby still healthy…I didn’t know I was pregnant?

Almost half of all pregnancies are unplanned…it happens. And a large majority of these women most likely took part in activities they wouldn’t have considered if they had known they were pregnant.

However, use of alcohol and drugs during your pregnancy can be very harmful to your baby, and you should stop use immediately when finding out you’re pregnant.

While it is known that drinking in pregnancy is the cause of some major problems from fetal alcohol syndrome to fetal alcohol effects, miscarriage, birth defects and other problems, drinking in very early pregnancy, usually before a pregnancy test would be positive, may not have caused a problem.

If you are concerned about any of your previous activities or behaviors, talk with your doctor and be honest. Your doctor will be able to do extra testing if needed. And remember, doctors deal with this on a daily basis so do not feel embarrassed or worried as you talk to them. The doctors are there to help, not judge you.

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