The birth of a baby is a pleasant and expected event. The expectant mother thinks through everything to the smallest detail and waits for the expected date of birth. It is determined by an obstetrician-gynecologist long before childbirth.
Childbirth is a natural process, so on day X, there may not be any harbingers of childbirth. This situation causes fear and panic in the expectant mother, especially when this is the first child.
So what percentage of babies are born on their due date? Only 4% of women give birth at a certain time. This is normal and there is no reason to worry. The main thing is to remain calm and listen to your body, do not make hasty decisions.
It is equally important to constantly be in touch with the doctor taking delivery. The expectant mother should immediately contact him in case of deterioration of health.
What is the estimated due date
EDD (estimated due date) is a relative date only. It is determined based on several factors. Doctors use obstetric and fetal methods as well as ultrasound diagnostics to determine the EDD. The obstetric method is based on the first day of the last menstruation. This is a very common way. It is not suitable for everyone, only for women who have a regular menstrual cycle.
The embryonic technique involves the determination of the EDD based on the date of ovulation. This is the actual gestational age, but the doctor and the woman cannot determine it exactly. The ovulation process can be shifted and it is almost impossible to determine the exact date of conception.
Doctors also use ultrasound diagnostics to determine the EDD. Determining the exact gestational age allows you to understand whether the pregnancy is developing correctly when you need to take tests or do ultrasound and screening studies to determine genetic abnormalities in the fetus.
What affects the duration of pregnancy
The duration of pregnancy depends on various factors: the time of implantation of the embryo, the age of the woman, and her weight. Studies show that a woman carries a baby longer every year of her life. Excess weight also affects the increase in the time of bearing a child.
Different embryos take different amounts of time to settle in the uterus. Those embryos that require more implantation time require more time from implantation to birth. Pregnancy is considered full-term from 37 to 42 weeks. All organs and systems at this time are formed and the baby is only gaining weight. Pregnancy is considered post-term after 42 weeks.
Heredity also affects the duration of pregnancy: if the mother and grandmother gave birth at 40 or 41 weeks, then there is a chance that the woman will also give birth at this time.
What percentage of babies are born on their due date
4% of children are born with the EDD. This means that every twentieth pregnant woman gives birth at exactly 40 weeks. This is not a high figure. A significant part of physiological childbirth falls on the 39-40th week.
If labor begins the next week after the EDD, then they are not considered abnormal. Pregnancy at 40-41 weeks is not considered post-term. Doctors do not see anything alarming in the fact that 40 weeks have passed and labor has not yet begun. It’s just not time yet.
The estimated date of delivery should not be taken as an exact but indicative. Doctors talk about the normal range of time during which many women give birth. For those who have a first birth, this is 40 weeks and 5 days. If this is the second birth, then it is 40 weeks and 3 days.
What is the danger of preterm birth
About 13 million preterm births occur worldwide every year. Premature births are those that occur between the 22nd and 37th weeks of pregnancy. Birthing activity can begin on any of these terms.
Preterm labor starts spontaneously but progresses rapidly. They end with the birth of a child whose body weight is more than 500 g. In perinatal centers and maternity hospitals, there are conditions for intensive care and resuscitation of newborns.
The main danger of early childbirth is that the child is simply not yet ready to come into the world. Organs and systems are still underdeveloped. For example, the lungs have not yet opened and they need additional oxygen and ventilators in children born before the 28th week of pregnancy.
Premature birth also affects the health of a woman because her body has not yet had time to rebuild.
The main reasons why childbirth does not occur in the EDD
The planned date of childbirth has come, but there are no harbingers of childbirth. This situation causes anxiety and anxiety in a pregnant woman. Experts assure that you should not worry because there may be various reasons for a delayed birth. The most common are the following:
Own biorhythm of the organism
Labor may start later if the woman has a long menstrual cycle (more than 30 days). The birth of a baby at 38-39 weeks is the exception rather than the rule. The more days in the cycle, the longer you can carry the fetus without fear. The duration of pregnancy 36-40 weeks is the norm if the duration of the menstrual cycle is less than 28 days.
Doctors observe a correlation between complications in the first trimester and the duration of pregnancy. Each organism has its characteristics, so a woman does not need to panic. It is important to monitor your well-being and listen to your body during this period. A woman should immediately consult a doctor if her health worsens.
Insufficient physical activity
The woman was recommended to work more and move more in ancient times so that childbirth would begin quickly and pass easily. There may be a delay in labor activity if a woman moves a little in the later stages. Physical activity and moderate exercise help prepare the muscles for childbirth and have a positive effect on preparing the cervix for the birth process.
It is not worth rushing to the hospital if all the tests are normal and the expectant mother feels good. It is useful to walk in the fresh air, do light gymnastics, and do stretching and relaxation exercises. You can swim in the pool.
The main thing is to remain calm and optimistic. Walking in the fresh air improves blood circulation and oxygen circulation, it is also additional pressure on the fetus on the lower uterus during walking.
Emotional overload is one of the most common reasons why labor does not start at the scheduled time. A woman unconsciously postpones the process of childbirth due to fear and unwillingness to experience pain.
Childbirth does not occur if it is an unwanted pregnancy, a woman has financial problems, or breaks up with a man. Stress hormones partially block sex hormones and the production of oxytocin. Muscle blockade at the physical level occurs due to experiences. The woman is clamped and tense and the cervix is in no hurry to open.
What is the peculiarity of post-term pregnancy
A pregnancy lasting more than 42 weeks is called post-term. The reasons may be different:
- pronounced malnutrition
- weak labor activity
- immaturity of the cervix
- flat fetal bladder
Women suffering from endocrine diseases, diseases of the liver, stomach, intestines, and pelvic organs are prone to post-term pregnancy. Post-term pregnancy is characterized by a high level of perinatal morbidity and mortality. There may be various complications during childbirth.
The doctor may decide to induce labor if it has not started after 42 weeks of pregnancy. A C-section is often recommended. The reason is a lack of oxygen and nutrients or a very large head circumference of the baby.
Newborns may have jaundice, asphyxia, neurological abnormalities, skin infections, and hormonal crises in the case of post-term pregnancy.
How to determine the date of birth
The calculation of the expected date of birth is done by the obstetrician-gynecologist leading the pregnancy. This helps to plan the last trimester of pregnancy correctly, hospitalize the patient in the maternity hospital on time, and to prepare well for meeting with the baby.
Calculation of the date of birth is done according to the formula:
date of fertilization plus 280 days = date of birth of the child. For example, 02/27/2021 + 280 days = 12/04/2021.
The doctor adds the date of the first day of the last menstruation, the average duration of menstruation, and 280 days if the woman does not know the date of fertilization. As a result, the woman has an estimated due date.
To determine the date of birth using the method of ultrasound diagnostics. The optimal period is 11-13 weeks of pregnancy. The doctor measures the coccyx-parietal size of the fetus during an ultrasound scan and this allows you to determine the exact gestational age and the expected date of birth.
What to do if childbirth does not occur on the due date
A woman should not worry if childbirth does not begin at the appointed time. This can harm the baby. The duration of pregnancy is an individual indicator and depends on various factors. It is forbidden to induce labor at home on your own. This can have negative consequences for the mother and the baby.