Womb Development

We've all lived there - but what do you really know about our common first home? Find out just how incredible the womb really is.

It's a relatively small, pear shaped organ contained within the female of our species. Yet within this unremarkable appearing space occurs the most amazing construction any of us could imagine. Within the womb entirely new bodies are made, new human beings. It's fitting then that this part of a woman's anatomy has been called "˜the cradle of life.' Let's step into the cradle and see what we find.

The womb consists of two parts; the main body and the cervix, or neck, of the womb. The walls are of thick, strong muscle. On the sides, towards the top, the two Fallopian tubes branch out. Ligaments under the Fallopian tubes also branch out to the ovaries, found near the entrance to the Fallopian tubes. So, how does all of this factory componentry work to produce a baby?

The process kicks off when the ovaries produce a mature egg, or ovum. This occurs every 28 days, the ovaries usually alternating in their production. The egg then travels down the Fallopian tubes to the uterus. If, during intercourse, male sperm is introduced, millions of sperm cells will swim toward the ovum. The ovum is 85,000 times larger than any single sperm cell. If one sperm cell manages to penetrate the ovum and reach it's nucleus, the nuclei of the sperm and the ovum will unite to create a new life.

While this occurs in the fallopian tubes, things are already happening in the womb to prepare a cozy home for the newcomer. A thick, soft, spongy lining has been made. If no fertilization has occurred, the lining will break down and be expelled through the cervix. This will manifest itself as bleeding, lasting from four to seven days. We know this as the menstrual cycle.

Once fertilized, the ovum multiplies by cellular division. It travels from the fallopian tubes to the womb where it fits snugly onto the soft lining. As it develops, the embryo will move farther in to the womb cavity, growing on a "˜body stork', which will become the umbilical cord. The embryo and body stork are encased in an amniotic sac, filled with fluid, that acts as a shock absorber and provides nourishment.

Next, the placenta begins to form. The placenta is a round, flat organ fastened to the womb which acts as a center for oxygen, nourishment, and excretion of wastes from the embryo. The placenta is, however, reliant on nutrients from the mother to feed the embryo. Whatever she takes into her system will partially be relayed to her child. The amazing placenta, in fact, serves as lungs, kidneys, liver and intestines for the growing embryo. In conjunction with the formation of the placenta, blood'islands' form in the body stork. Vascular walls soon develop around these islands. And so, the baby's circulatory system comes into being.

A month after conception, the embryo has already formed most of it's vital organ systems. It has a heart, a digestive tract, kidneys and a blood stream. The circulatory systems of mother and child are, then, separate. So, the stage is set for a period of extraordinary growth and development that will culminate in the birth of a unique human being.

From this brief look inside the "˜cradle of life' we have seen how marvellously designed the female womb is. Let us show our respect for that design by working in harmony with it and providing our growing child with the best of nutrients. Our staying calm and stress free during pregnancy will also benefit the natural processes. leading to the creation of a new life.

© High Speed Ventures 2011