Imhealthist | Saturday 21st of November 2015 12:18:01 PM

The first step of creation of a new life begins when a woman gets conceived. A new life is created when the egg from a female and sperm from a male fuse together. It is during the fertile years of a woman that more eggs are released, and hence it is considered as the best time to conceive. As the woman gets older, the production of eggs gets decreased.

Menstrual Cycle:

The cycle starts from the first day of menstrual bleeding. Right from day one, the body starts its preparation for maturation of an egg from a follicle. Follicles are sacs, each of which contains an egg. Various hormones are released by the body to trigger the maturity of follicle, which in turn releases estrogen to change the cervical mucous and thicken the lining of uterus from 2nd day to 14th day of the cycle and make it ready for implantation of the fertilized egg. After reaching certain level of estrogen, the most dominant follicle bursts open and release an egg. This process is called ovulation and usually happens on the 14th day, if the menstrual cycle is of 28 days. Just prior to ovulation, woman's cervix secretes fertile mucous which helps the sperm to move toward the egg.  If the sperm unites with the egg, fertilization happens and gets implanted in the lining of uterus.

If the egg fails to fertilize, the hormone levels will drop and lead to next menstrual cycle. The thickened line in the uterus also gets shed during this period.

Once the sperm and egg gets united, they are ready for a new life.  From a single cell, the egg divides itself continuously to form more cells. When the cell count reaches 100 or more, it becomes a mass called embryo. After fertilization, embryo takes 5 days to reach the uterus and now it is called blastocyst. Through genomic activation, the embryo activates its own genes for cell division and finally forms into a blastocyst. While the inner cell mass of blastocyst develops into fetus and the outer layer or trophoblast, develops as placenta. The actually pregnancy happens when this is attached to the uterus wall. In some cases, formation may happen in fallopian tube itself which requires immediate medical attention.

Points To Be Remembered:

After the eggs are released, it can survive for 12 to 24 hrs. This is a crucial time for an egg to fertilize. An egg should meet a healthy sperm on its way to fertilize and settle in uterus to conceive. 

Millions of sperm enters woman’s body but during their journey towards the egg, many sperms gets destroyed, trapped, or lost and only one sperm unites with the egg. Also, it is the type of chromosomes that are present in the sperm decides the gender of fetus. While an X chromosome in sperm produces a girl baby, Y chromosome results in a boy baby.

When periods are missed, HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) urine test can be done with home pregnancy test kit or in a lab. The positive result of the urine test indicates pregnancy. Even if the results are negative but if all pregnancy signs are experienced, then it is advisable to wait for another week and repeat the tests. It is always better to take a test after 10 days of the missed period.