Your due date is the estimated date of delivery. It is really more to do with measuring the progress of your pregnancy and less to do with the final day when your newborn decides to make his appearance.
Doctors use the approximate date of conception and due date to estimate the age of the fetus and gauge the developmental milestones. An ultrasound is usually done in the first trimester to pinpoint the actual gestational age, after which the fetal development milestones can be tracked against a pregnancy calendar.
When you determine you are pregnant, the doctor will ask when your last menstrual period was. The first day of your last menstrual period (LMP), is day zero. The majority of women ovulate two weeks after this first day of their last menstrual period, and this is the most likely time of conception.
Both you and your doctor can track the fetal development progress using a pregnancy calendar. A pregnancy calendar is a great way for you to track development, and connect your signs and symptoms with the development of your baby. It is a great way to measure against the milestones you will be experiencing during your pregnancy, like hearing the baby’s heartbeat for the first time and finding out the sex of the baby.
There are many pregnancy calculators, and they help estimate your due date based on the LMP and date of conception. Pregnancy calculators are based on ‘Naegele’s rule” to estimate the delivery date. Naegele’s rule subtracts three months from the LMP, then adds one year and seven days.
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