Pregnancies are known to last around 38-40 weeks so the ideal way of calculating your due date would be to count 40 weeks from the beginning of your last period. This is how medically due dates are calculated but given the variability in different pregnancies, due dates can differ from the estimated version and might tend to be revised as you come nearer to the date. So if your due date has come and gone and if you are practically clueless about when you are actually delivering the baby, it’s better to lie down and enjoy the last few days without a baby tugging at your shirt.
How Do Doctors Calculate The Due Date?
The due date that is common in laymen terms is medically known as the Estimated Date of Delivery or the EDD. So it is quite obvious that the calculation is an estimate rather than a final verdict. You are to subtract three months from the first day of your last period and add seven days to it. That is supposed to be your Due Date in the coming year.
Are All Babies Born On The Due Date?
Not necessarily so. A lot of babies have been known to wait till after the due date or be an early bird and come knocking at around 38 weeks. Some others are born prematurely due to various complications. The due date is more of an estimate to keep yourself geared up as per your cycle.
When The Calculation Does Not Work
Your estimated due date might not work and you could ask why. One of the primary reasons for this is an irregular cycle. Not every woman has a perfect 28 day cycle and if you tend to miss periods in a while, it might get difficult to understand the cycle accurately. In such scenarios doctors take up other measures to calculate your due date.
What Are The Other Measures?
Doctors take up other tests to calculate the gestational age of the fetus that in turn helps to pinpoint your date more accurately. They are:
1. An Ultrasound Examination
In early pregnancy, an ultrasound examination is performed by the doctor to find out the due date. A vaginal scan could also be performed if the ultrasound images are not clear.
2. Uterus Size
A vaginal scan or an internal examination will help to find out the size of your size that will also let the doctor know the due date.
3. Fundal Height
As the pregnancy progresses, your doctor will check you for several things and one among those will be the fundal height1. This is measured at the prenatal visits and will help to confirm the due date.
4. Fetal Developments
The growth and development of your fetus is capable of determining your due date. Your doctor will check fetal heartbeat and will ask you to keep a track of fetal movement in order to make out the due date if other measures are not accurate enough in your condition.
There is every possibility that your due date is revised a couple of times in the pregnancy and that happens with a lot of women due to the irregularity of cycles so if the same happens to you, try not to get too impatient and keep your calm because labor is imminent.