The journey of the baby: from the embryo to newborn stage
Congratulations, now you have conceived and it is confirmed that you are pregnant. You may be curious to know how your baby develops inside the uterus. Here we provide you with an overview of the process through the journey of the baby from the embryo to newborn stage. It is really interesting and fascinating to know how the baby develops from a single cell to a newborn with arms and legs.
Once you have conceived, the egg that is fertilized by the sperm is called a zygote. The zygote multiplies through cell division and gets attached to the wall of uterus for nutrition. This ball of cells then develops in embryo. The embryo is surrounded by amniotic sac. The cells migrate towards the center and forms a streak. The cells migrate into three different layers, which will form different parts of the baby’s body.
- The top layer
- The middle layer
- The bottom layer
The top layer
The top layer has the formation of neural tube which develops into brain, backbone, spinal cord and nerves. The skin hair and nails will also develop from the first layer
The middle layer
The skeleton, muscles, the heart and the circulatory system develop from this layer.
The bottom layer
The lungs, the intestine and the urinary system develop from this layer
The heart of the baby is partially developed and has started beating at the rate of 100 beats per minute. The buds that form the hands and legs of the baby also starts developing. The facial features of the baby also starts forming with dark dots that form eyes, opening for nostrils and small pits that will form years. The baby’s head is large and is bent over what will be the baby’s chest. The neural tube now forms a closed cavity, this cavity will develop into ventricular system that produces the fluid to protect the brain and spinal cord. Cartilage and nerves also start developing in the baby’s limbs and organs. The baby’s brain will grow about one third. Also, by the end of the second month, the baby’s facial features become more prominent, the hands become long enough to meet over the chest, although the toes and fingers are not yet distinct.
Third month is the mark of end of embryonic stage of the baby and the beginning of the fetal stage. Now, the earlobes are fully developed. The hair follicles, the taste buds and the genitals are beginning to develop. The fingers and toes of the baby can be seen clearly. The baby also starts the full hand and leg kicking by this time. The inner organs of the baby’s abdomen are in developmental stage. The eyelids are now fully formed and are tightly shut. The mouth of the baby is totally formed. The bones of the palate fuse together. By the end of the third month, the baby can also form a grip of her own fingers and can form sucking motions with her lips.
The brain of the baby is constantly developing. Now the part of the brain that helps in problem solving skills and memory development slowly starts developing. The baby’s unique fingerprints are also developing. The baby can now swallow things and it swallows amniotic fluid. The baby’s genital areas also have almost developed. The baby’s limbs develop at a faster rate now. This helps in a proportionate development of the baby. The baby forms fast facial expressions one after the other. The swallowing of the amniotic fluid is good for the development of baby’s lungs. The skeletal system of the baby is hardening and the legs are still developing. The baby’s eyelids are shut, but now the baby becomes sensitive to light. Slowly, the baby also develops the ability to hear. She can now hear your muffled voice. The internal organs of the body are now fully functional. The baby has a layer of hair throughout the body called lanugo. This will protect the baby’s body temperature from dropping.
The fifth month
Myelin starts covering the baby’s spinal cord and nerves. This help in speeding of messages in between baby’s brain and nerves. The baby’s skeleton is still hardening from rubbery cartilage form to hard bone form. The umbilical cord and the placenta also grows stronger and thicker. The anomaly scan is also performed to get the details of baby’s development. The ears of the baby’s are now fully developed. The baby’s genital organs are now fully developed. Also now there is the growth of tiny hair on the baby’s scalp. A whitish coat forms over the baby’s skin. This prevents the baby’s skin from drying in the amniotic fluid.
The sixth month
During the sixth month. You will start feeling a pattern in your baby’s movements. The baby has phases of being awake and asleep. When awake you may feel that the baby is practicing martial arts. The placenta is heavier then the baby. But, now on the baby’s growth will outgrow the growth of the placenta. The baby continues to swallow amniotic fluid, which helps in the development of digestive system. A sticky by product called muconium now accumulates in the baby’s bowel. This will be the first blackish poo of the baby. The boy’s penis starts descending down and mammary glands of the girl starts developing. The baby’s bone marrow starts developing red blood cells. The baby can now clearly hear a lot of sounds.
The seventh month
The hair on the baby’s scalp continue to grow. The baby’s senses are becoming more stronger and the baby may react to a sudden loud sound by kicking or a sudden jump. The baby’s lungs continue to develop. The air sacs and alveoli slowly start to develop now. These air sacs will be filled with oxygen when the baby is born. The baby’s nostrils begin to open and the taste buds are fully developed. The baby has more developed sleeping pattern and will start developing the process called the rapid eye movement (REM). The baby can also hiccup and can have tears.
The eighth month
The baby’s brain continues to grow and has incredible brain growth. A lot of neurons are produced, which helps in further development of the brain. The baby continues to grow and has less room left in the womb now. Still, the baby remains very active.
The ninth month
The baby is now becoming plump and the baby’s skin loses wrinkles. The baby’s skull is still soft. The plates of bone forming the skull are not fused together. This will help the baby pass through the birth canal easily. The baby also starts shedding the lanugo over her skin. The baby might turn in a head down position and the head of the baby might engage now. This is the starting of the baby’s birth process.