Congratulations! You're pregnant!

It’s here your amazing journey to become a mother really begins. Most women don't even know they are pregnant for the first month of pregnancy, but amazing changes are happening in your body, even though the physical signs won't reveal themselves for some time. Confusingly, you probably only conceived a week ago, but because pregnancies are measured from the first day of your last period, you spend the first two weeks of your pregnancy ‘not pregnant’ as conception usually takes place about 14 days before your next period is due.

Confused? Peruse our articles on the science of conception to learn about everything from how babies are made to understanding your monthly cycle. Our articles can also help you understand more about when you conceived. Alternatively use our due date calculator to work out when your baby is likely to be due based on the first day of your last monthly period.

Your developing baby

This early stage of pregnancy is extremely important because your baby, who is actually smaller than a grain of rice, is changing from a cluster of cells, to form the rudimentary shape of a tiny embryo. By the end of the fourth week, a primitive heart will already have begun to beat. Your baby is called an embryo at this stage and is half an inch long and weighs just an ounce. As the embryo burrows into the lining of the uterus the building blocks for all the major organs start to form. The neural tube, or your baby’s brain and spinal cord, start to develop, foundations for the heart, the lungs and the digestive system begin to form and the incredible journey of your developing baby begins.

Even though it's far too early to tell, your baby's sex has already been decided at the point of conception, as well as all the future characteristics like eye colour, hair colour or how big its feet will grow. You will have to wait a little longer to find out the sex though... See Boy or Girl? for more hints.

Most women don't realise they are pregnant at this stage, or until they have missed a period in a week or so, but some women claim to 'just know' the minute of conception. This is probably down to female intuition and a fair amount of pregnancy hormones that flow around your body the moment you conceive. Although the classic signs to indicate you are pregnant such as morning sickness or gaving a strange metallic taste in your mouth may not happen for a few weeks, you may want to read Am I pregnant? to prepare yourself for what may be in store. 

It's best to wait till the day your next period is due to try a home pregnancy test, but some tests may show a faint line at this point.

Keeping healthy is the best way to conceive and to be sure you have a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby. Check out our diet for a healthy mum-to-be for a straightforward look at what you should and shouldn’t be eating.

You are probably brimming with questions at this stage, mostly about what is in store for you over the next few months. Visit our Early Pregnancy section to learn about everything from when your antenatal appointments will be, to what tummy cramps or bleeding may mean in early pregnancy.

Curious about what's in store in week 4? Read on...

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