It’s official: you're pregnant now! Continue to follow healthy pregnancy habits.
What Is Happening To Your Body
When fertilization occurs, the tissue surrounding the fertilized egg begins producing the hormone progesterone, which keeps your uterus from contracting. About four days after fertilization, you begin producing a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin, or HCG. HCG is the hormone used to detect pregnancy in a home pregnancy test.
You may experience a little vaginal bleeding or discharge, which occurs as a result of the fertilized egg implanting itself into your uterus. This is known as implantation bleeding.
You should already be taking a prenatal vitamin that includes folic acid. This nutrient is especially important right now in preventing neural tube defects like spina bifida and anencephaly.
What Is Happening To Your Baby
Your fertilized egg (zygote) has already started to undergo the process of cell division. Within 12 hours, one cell divides into two cells and continues to double every 12 hours. As the cells continue to divide, the egg moves through the fallopian tube, towards the uterus.
The cluster of cells is now called a morula, which comes from the Latin word for ‘mulberry,’ which is what it resembles. When the morula enters the uterus it fills with liquid, converting it to a blastocyst, or a hollow sphere of cells. Around 6 to 7 days after fertilization, the blastocyst embeds itself into the thickened uterine lining. This process is known as implantation. In addition to providing nutrients and oxygen to the blastocyst, the uterine lining, called the endometrium, will also support healthy growth by removing your baby’s waste. Over the next week or two, the implantation site will turn into the placenta.