Weird and Totally Normal Facts About Pregnancy
Scary facts about Pregnancy
1-The baby pees in the womb, then drinks the pee. Over and over again:
In fact, that adorable little child drinks about a liter of urine per day. That’s enough to put Bear Grylls to shame. Amniotic fluid is mostly pee, in fact. There’s rarely any poop, though, since the mother only sends nutrients on to the baby.
That’s not to say that babies can’t taste; some research indicates that a mother’s food choices during pregnancy can influence the child’s taste palate later in life. Vanilla and garlic, for instance, pass into the amniotic fluid before the baby drinks them. Yes, the baby simply filters all of those flavors through pee.
2-A woman’s feet can grow during pregnancy, and in some cases, they don’t shrink after childbirth:
Yes, if you’ve ever felt self-conscious about the size of your feet, ladies, pregnancy isn’t going to do you any favors. You’re not going to move up to clown shoes, exactly, but you may have to throw out your old shoe collection
There are a few reasons for this, but mainly, your body needs to expand the pelvic joints in order to prepare for the birth of the child. When you’ve got wider hips, you need longer feet to stay balanced. Many new mothers gain an entire shoe size, and their feet don’t necessarily shrink when the pregnancy’s over.
Of course, you can diminish this effect somewhat by stretching regularly, finding supportive shoes, and avoiding excessive weight gain, but absolutely everything in that previous sentence is way harder when you’re pregnant.
3-A woman’s bones can become much more brittle during pregnancy:
Notice that we said “can,” not “will.”
Osteoporosis (literally “pores in the bones”) can become an issue during pregnancy if a woman doesn’t increase her calcium intake.
The baby needs plenty of calcium to form a skeleton, and it’s greedy—it’ll suck up all of the calcium it needs from Mom. This can result in bone density loss, which can lead to serious health issues.
There’s good news, though. The mother’s body prepares for this threat, and elevated levels of estrogen and progesterone help to protect bone density. There’s some evidence that women who undergo multiple pregnancies have stronger bones than women who’ve never been pregnant.
That said, women should be sure to get enough calcium both during and immediately after a pregnancy. (Breastfeeding can also drain out some of that much-needed calcium, since milk is, you know, loaded with the stuff.)
4-The mother’s uterus can grow to 500 times its original size:
Think about blowing up a balloon and that’s basically what your uterus does during pregnancy. According to the American Pregnancy Association (APA), the uterus grows exponentially during pregnancy, starting at the size of an orange and growing to the size of a watermelon.
“Think about blowing up a balloon and that’s basically what your uterus does during pregnancy,” the website casually states, as if that’s anything close to a comforting thought. Certified nurse midwife Gigi Moore, CNM, who cares for pregnant women with the St. Joseph Medical Group in Maryland, explains the phenomenon without resorting to such a colorful metaphor.
The uterus expands to accommodate stretching the abdominal muscles,” Moore tells Healthy Way. “The expanding uterus contributes to the low back pain that starts early on in pregnancy and can continue to the delivery.”
That’s the bad news. The good news—if there is any good news is that the uterus “deflates” back to its normal size within about six weeks after the pregnancy concludes.
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