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Reference question

A quick reference question put out to those in the audience who would actually know.

Pregnancy: When does it start to show on people (on average) and when does it become restricting (again on average)?

Research information for a game. :)

Comments

( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
nicked_metal
Dec. 9th, 2006 01:54 pm (UTC)
Pregnancy doesn't normally show until 3-4 months, and becomes prominent and seriously inconvenient around 6-7 months. Experiences vary - morning sickness can be debilitating after only 2-3 months if the woman has a stressed-out personality. In rare cases, a seriously obese woman has not known she was pregnant until she delivered the baby. Thin women will show sooner and more prominently.

In the last month or two, the kicking of the baby can produce serious discomfort and can be felt quite strongly through the baby. I put my head on the ex-wife's belly once and got kicked in the ear - it didn't hurt me, but it was uncomfortable. And I experienced the kick through the padding of the abdominal muscles.

One of the most common and annoying symptoms of pregnancy is constant pressure on the bladder. Some women lose the ability to prevent their bladders from leaking in late pregnancy.
catdraco
Dec. 9th, 2006 11:37 pm (UTC)
Thin women will show sooner and more prominently.

You'd think so, wouldn't you? If the woman is quite fit or athletic, a firm abdominal wall tends to hide pregnancy for longer. Condition of the abdominal muscles and torso length are more likely to make a difference to "showing" than simply being thinner. I know women at either end of the spectrum: both are extremely thin, one started showing obviously at 12 weeks, the other not until about 7 months.
nicked_metal
Dec. 10th, 2006 12:29 am (UTC)
I sit corrected!
catdraco
Dec. 10th, 2006 12:32 am (UTC)
Pregnancy brain's a wonderful thing. I could throw pregnancy-related factoid after factoid at you... but I'm flat out remembering to turn the oven on when I want to cook something. *grin*
nicked_metal
Dec. 10th, 2006 12:59 am (UTC)
As I said to my ex-wife when she was pregnant, "At last, you've been brought down to my level!"
greenglowgrrl
Dec. 9th, 2006 02:45 pm (UTC)
That sounds pretty typical. It is also possible if you are a small woman with a small baby (like I was) or an overweight woman, to have noone ever aware you are pregnant. This of course is not the norm. But convenient for my mother as she never had to buy maternity clothes.
catcom
Dec. 9th, 2006 08:13 pm (UTC)
Also, the ligaments of the hip loosen in prep for labour. That's pretty late in the process, but makes anything above a fast waddle pretty impossible. Between that and the weight imbalance, heavily pregnant women will never win running races!
bodgirl
Dec. 9th, 2006 08:57 pm (UTC)
They could win awards with the yoga positions available to them :)
catdraco
Dec. 9th, 2006 11:25 pm (UTC)
Between that and the weight imbalance, heavily pregnant women will never win running races!

I beg to differ. ;)

She's an unusual case, though.
catcom
Dec. 10th, 2006 12:08 am (UTC)
Wow! She sure is...
travisjhall
Dec. 10th, 2006 03:50 am (UTC)

If my previous experience with weight-belts is anything to go by, she'll be setting records a week after she gives birth.

catdraco
Dec. 9th, 2006 11:23 pm (UTC)
It varies greatly. It's hard to suggest "average" values for this sort of thing.

For example, I started showing at 12 weeks, which is pretty early for a first pregnancy. Many first pregnancies show much later than that - usually around 4-5 months, some as late as 6 months.

Second and subsequent pregnancies tend to show earlier than first pregnancies.

A pregnancy doesn't truly "show" until at least 12 weeks have passed - until then, the uterus is tucked behind the pubic bone. However with subsequent pregnancies the added pressure in the abdomen combined with weakened abdominal muscles mean that a woman may have a pooch earlier - around 8-10 weeks.

If it's for a game character, you'd be well within average ranges if you had your character showing around 4-5 months if it's a first pregnancy, or around 3-4 months if it's a second or subsequent.

(*heh* - can you tell I'm pregnant right now? *grin*)

As to being restricting - what do you mean? There are various restrictions all throughout pregnancy. In the first trimester (that is, up until 12-13 weeks) women tend to be extremely, bone-crushingly tired. Dragging oneself about miserably kind of tired. Exhausted. Did I mention tired? This tends to lift in second timester, which is the free-est trimester of all, usually: the morning sickness and tiredness pass, but you're not so big or bloated or heavy that anything's a problem. From the third trimester, women become gradually heavier, have to pee (even) more often, and start to get tired again (though at this point it's just from lugging extra weight around). Some women find pregnancy not restricting at all (see Jana Pittman: currently a week off delivery, and still running track): others find themselves retaining fluid and tired from around 7 months.

It would depend a lot on the character you're developing, but you have a lot of leeway. =)
catdraco
Dec. 9th, 2006 11:40 pm (UTC)
If it's for a game character, you'd be well within average ranges if you had your character showing around 4-5 months if it's a first pregnancy, or around 3-4 months if it's a second or subsequent.

I should add that her waist may thicken a bit before then, but it won't look like pregnancy. It will just look like she's gained a little bit of weight. Women can bloat a bit from as early as 6-7 weeks, but again it doesn't look like pregnancy - just like a little extra weight.
travisjhall
Dec. 10th, 2006 03:52 am (UTC)

Truly, this is a thread that should be read by all freeform authors.

fire_wuff
Dec. 10th, 2006 04:04 am (UTC)
Yep average is about nonexistant and the outliers when it comes to pregnancy. There are a lot of variables, there are cases of women going into labour and not knowing they are pregnant. Morning sickness may not happen at all or can last till after the birth. Blood preause issues and Pre-eclampsia(sp?) can cause the woman to be bed bound from as early as 3 months or one woman I knew was still exercising (too much in the doc opinion) up untill 8 months. I know of a few women who still bleed every month while pregnant.

And these are just the normal pregnancys, once you start looking at the weird stuff like abdominal pregnancys (out side the uterus) which survive etc. it gets VERY weird.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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