Unknown Facts About Unborn Babies That Everyone Should Know

By Aaron Love 9 months ago

They Are Embryos Until 8 Weeks

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Up until the age of eight months old, that little thing isn't medically referred to as an unborn baby, but they're actually known as embryos within the medical community instead. Essentially this is because the first eight weeks are characterized by some of the most significant changes as the fertilized egg is going through a whole range of differentiated cell types and tissues.

The First Trimester Development

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For those of you that aren't clued up on the ins and outs of pregnancies, the first trimester of your pregnancy is actually 13 weeks long. During this period you'll see the organ system and body structure of your little one begin to develop meaning that they're actually beginning to take the shape of an actual human being at this stage whilst in the womb.

Most Miscarriages Occur In The First Trimester

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This is perhaps the most tragic thing that can happen during a pregnancy, especially for many people who have been trying for a baby for long periods of time. Miscarriages, the process in which someone can lose their baby whilst in the womb, typically occur in the first trimester that I mentioned before; this is also where that the majority of birth defects are also determined.

The Organs Continue To Develop

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Now, we already know that the organs within a baby develop during the first trimester, but at this point they haven't fully grown or developed to where they'll need to be when it comes to actually giving birth. All of the individual organs will continue to develop and mature for pretty much the entire time that the baby spends within the womb of it's mother during her term.

The Brain Begins To Form Early

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Obviously, the brain is one of those organs that begins to develop during the first trimester, but did you know that around 3-4 weeks after conception the human brain begins to develop from a 3mm tube. That's right our brain builds from a little tube that will go on to build 3 regions of the human brain, the hindbrain, the midbrain and the forebrain. The human anatomy really is crazy!

It Begins Moving By The Second Trimester

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By the beginning of the second trimester (although it can start later than this) your unborn baby can begin making purposeful movements around the womb of its own accord. This doesn't necessarily mean that the mother will be able to feel them moving though; so don't worry if you're at the start of your second trimester and you aren't having the inside of your stomach kicked in by the little one!

Responding To Stimuli

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When it comes to the end of the second trimester of a pregnancy the little unborn baby within your womb might begin responding to some external stimuli. This is typically known to be any noises it can hear or any bright lights that will actually pass through the skin of the stomach. They might not essentially recognise what the sounds they're hearing are, but at least they're hearing them!

Recognising Their Mother

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Yep, by the third trimester the baby should actually be able to comfortably recognise their own mother's voice from the outside world. By this period, the baby's senses have become refined and therefore they might be able to create a relationship with the mother without even knowing it. This is often believed to be part of the reason why the maternal relationship is so popular with new-borns.

They Can Develop Music Preferences

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The choice of music that gets played everywhere from your car, to your workplace and even your home can create for some contentious conversations and relationships if people don't agree. It turns out that the opinions you have on music can actually begin to develop as early in your life as when you're in the womb. So maybe try to get them on your favourites early on!

They Know When It's Nighttime

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Although I'm sure there's a number of mother's reading this that might think this means nothing after being kept up for nights on end by their unborn child, the fetus is definitely aware of there being lighter and darker times of a day. The problem here however, is that despite this, they still don't know the concepts of night and day and so their sleep pattern won't adapt yet.

If You're Stressed, So Is The Baby

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There has been a lot of research into how the emotional feelings of a mother might affect an unborn baby within the womb. And there has been some growing belief that if a mother is stressed that this can go on to make the fetus stressed as well and potentially harm the babies development. Try and keep yourself as chilled out as is humanly possible during the pregnancy.

Some Of The Issues Stress Can Cause

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I mentioned that stress can cause issues in the development of an unborn baby, although typically this had to be quite severe! High stress hormones have often been blamed for increasing the possibility of the baby being born underweight, impairing some organ development, future behavioural issues and also hypertension that could follow the child following their birth.

Stress Can Cause A Premature Birth

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Not only can stress cause all of those issues, but stress is also a commonly recognised factor in the mother birthing their child prematurely. I'm sure many of you are aware of some of the problems that might come alongside a premature birth; they might come across numerous health issues as a result of their organs being underdeveloped or a number of their systems (like the nervous) being the same.

Sleep Cycles

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By the time the third trimester comes around your unborn baby will begin to display some signs of obvious sleep cycles, including REM (rapid eye movement) cycles that can be tracked. Supposedly, a baby's brain will go back and forth between REM and non-REM constantly for periods of 20-40 minutes every single day they spend in the womb, especially following the second trimester.

They Sleep... A LOT!

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Okay, this one might not come across as much of a surprise to you, but unborn babies spend massive amounts of their day fast asleep in the womb, just as they would once they've been birthed too. In fact, studies have found that an unborn baby can spend upwards of 95% of an entire day fast asleep. If only we could all spend our days asleep and not having to work like them!

The Placenta Feeds Them Nutrients

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You might already know that some parents choose to keep the placenta following the birth of their child, choosing to eat it. You can hold your own judgement on that decision, but it can be great for the body. And that's exactly how unborn babies receive nutrients and oxygen that boost and support their development; the placenta is connected to the mother's bloodstream.

The Placenta Is A Layer Of Protection

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Not only does the placenta help an unborn baby get all of the essential nutrients it needs to survive in the womb but it also filters out any waste products like carbon dioxide that could cause issues to the babies health. Any of the negative waste products that manage to get in to a baby's blood will be removed via the placenta, meaning it's one of the most important aspects of the pregnancy.

Don't Do Anything Harmful

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Okay well this one isn't so much an unknown fact, but one that should always be exaggerated to any new mothers or anyone involved in a pregnancy for that matter. Once you know you're pregnant you have to avoid any harmful substances like alcohol, but that also includes stopping from taking any illegal drugs or smoking as these can negatively impact the fetus' development.

Always Get Checked If Ill

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Even if you're feeling as though any illness you have might be nothing you should always contact a medical professional if you're an expecting mother. You can never bee too careful when you're carrying and medical professionals would always implore you to make sure instead of letting things pass. Do what's best for your child to avoid any potential issues, it might be nothing but just check!

You Might Be Able To Tell What Hand They'll Prefer

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As you're probably aware, the majority of people around the world would prefer to use their right hands or right feet more forwardly than they would their left, scientists aren't necessarily sure why this happens either. But, via ultrasounds you might actually be able to determine what hand your child will prefer based solely off what hand they're preferring to move more.

The Baby Responds To Taste

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When a mother eats food, the flavours will begin seeping into the amniotic fluid around the baby within around an hour of it being swallowed. Although you won't feel it yourself, your child will actually choose to eat more or less food depending on how they enjoy the taste, just like we do now. If the fluid tastes sweeter they'll eat more and if it's bitter or sour they'll swallow less.

Heartbeat Appears At Six Weeks

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Although your unborn baby is absolutely tiny at just six weeks old, they're approximately the size of a lentil at this age, your baby will begin to develop and show signs of having a heartbeat. It might be a superficial thing to see or hear, but for the first time it can be quite an enlightening and joyous moment for new parents to see some of the first living signs of their unborn baby.

Baby Teeth

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Although your baby will be born with no showing teeth (almost always) by the time your unborn baby has been in your womb for 12 weeks they will have developed a set of 20 teeth in their gums. These are the very baby teeth that we'll see coming through after their birth and the exact same ones that will end up causing us to lose hours and hours of our sleep as they cause our baby pain.

Your Placenta Will Weigh A LOT!

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Something that you might not be aware of when you become pregnant is quite how large your placenta will be, when it comes to being 40 weeks pregnant you'll be looking at being around 650g heavier than you were previously and the placenta will technically count as an entire extra organ within your body. It's a lot of additional weight to have to carry around with you.

Sucking Their Thumb

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By the time that your unborn baby has reached 9 weeks old they'll begin displaying this distinctive babylike movement and start sucking on their thumb. This might seem like quite a weird thing for them to learn, but babies develop a natural sucking reflex and using their thumb which fits in their mouth comfortably is actually a natural way for them to soothe themselves.

Learning To Breathe

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One of the most important and crucial things for an unborn child to learn whilst in the womb is the ability to breathe, something you might not have considered before. But obviously, if your baby hasn't developed this skill then they could be in danger once they've finally been birthed. Fortunately, medical professionals can check this in and around the third trimester.

Viability Period

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Following the 27th week of your pregnancy, you have passed the stage in which your baby is considered viable for birth. That might sound like a weird way to phrase it, but if they're born for this period they are actually considered periviable. Essentially, if you child is viable then they're around the right age to be birthed without expecting any serious complications arising.

Your Baby Has More Bones Than You

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This is quite a bizarre fact but one that you might remember from your biology lessons as a child, if you paid attention properly. It seems crazy, but babies form more than 300 bones whilst in the womb, which is 94 more than the adult human! These bones will, over time, fuse together in order to result in them also having the 206 bones that we all have today.

They Actually Cry In The Womb

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Listening to our babies cry is one of the many things that parents perhaps look forward to the least when carrying their unborn babies, but it's an important lesson for them to learn. At around 26 weeks after conception they'll begin crying, inaudibly to you; this is a great way for them to communicate with you when in the real world so they're getting some valuable experience.

They Have No Kneecaps

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One of the bones that your unborn baby won't have developed whilst in the womb is their kneecaps; you might have recognised that their knees look a little wobbly when they're born and that's exactly why! Following their birth, around 6 months after they'll begin to developing their kneecaps, which is also part of the reason it takes them quite a long period to begin walking around.