Many women wonder what physical changes they will experience when they get pregnant. This is especially true for first-time mums. Even though you might have been around a pregnant woman, it's not easy to understand the processes and bodily changes that come with being pregnant.
There are a lot of physical changes aside from putting on weight, swollen feet and food cravings. A woman's body goes through several changes that can result in body or mouth oduor, changes in voice and bloating, all of which are all hormonal changes that cannot be controlled.
Being aware and educated on what happens when you get pregnant is important, as it helps you understand your body and prepare yourself for these changes.
Discussed below are some of the weird changes that the female body goes through during pregnancy.
- Change in voice
Pregnant women have an increase in progesterone and oestrogen hormones which affect almost every part of their bodies. This includes lung capacity, muscle control and an increase in body fluids.
These changes result in the swelling of the vocal cords, which makes pregnant women lose the ability to speak in high vocal notes. These changes also cause the blood vessels to be fragile and prone to tear thus pregnant women should avoid shouting and speaking in high notes.
- Loose bones
For the body to prepare itself for child birth, a hormone called relaxin is released. The release of this hormone stimulates the separation of the pubic bone down the middle. This allows the uterine muscle to ease, and also helps to loosen and relax the cartilage that keeps the bones together.
This is the body's way of preparing itself for labour. This hormone, however, affects other joints in the body hence why pregnant women sometimes experience back and joint pain.
It is normal and very common for pregnant women to get bloated and experience swelling. This is caused by the excess fluids that are retained in the body. Bloating can also be caused by the increased progesterone levels which make the smooth muscles relax.
In the gastrointestinal tract, this tends to slow down digestion to make sure nutrients are extracted for the growing baby. This causes a buildup of excess gas which leads to burping and passing of gas. Therefore, it is not only the abdomen that gets bigger when one is pregnant.
- More hair than normal
Some women experience an increase in hair growth in different parts of their body such as the abdomen, arms and even their face and chest. This happens due to an increase in the production of male hormones in the ovaries and the placenta, however, this decreases after one gives birth.
The positive aspect of this increased hair growth is that the hair on the scalp grows faster and becomes thicker and healthier. This is why some women have healthy and radiant hair when they are pregnant.
- Mouth oduor
Bad mouth oduor, also known as halitosis, is another change that a woman may experience while pregnant. This bad breath is associated with the changes in hormones which can cause bacteria in the mouth to be inflamed and overgrown, leading to one having bad breath, and at times, bleeding gums.
Pregnant women should go for regular medical checkups, and ensure that they have proper mouth hygiene by brushing their teeth twice a day and making sure that they floss between their teeth to avoid tooth decay and gum problems.
- Excessive sweating
One of the most common body changes that pregnant women experience is excessive sweating. This is because of the increase in blood flow and metabolism while pregnant. Even though the body might not be physically active, it is working hard to create another life which is enough to cause one to sweat all the time.
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The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Evewoman.co.ke