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Pregnancy Myth: Pregnancy Lasts 9 Months

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Pregnancy related image Photo: Getty Images

Did you know pregnancy doesn’t last nine months as is commonly thought?

Most pregnancies are considered 40 weeks long, because a pregnancy usually is calculated from the woman’s last menstrual period (LMP). Yeah, that’s roughly 10 months.

By that figuring, the first two weeks of a typical pregnancy actually occur before conception has even happened. A woman’s most fertile days are usually 10-16 days after their period starts, although since everyone is different, ovulation and fertilization can fluctuate based on your specific cycle. For that reason, if you’re trying to get pregnant, tracking your periods can be helpful. Interesting, eh?

So how do you know when to take a pregnancy test? Many doctors recommend taking one after a missed period, and even a week after your period is a "no show" to ensure an accurate result. If it’s positive, call your doctor and count 40 weeks from your LMP to find your projected due date. And be glad that when you find out you’re pregnant, you’re already probably four to six weeks pregnant. Only 35 or so weeks to go!

If your test wasn’t positive, keep trying! You may want to check out these articles: Articles on Trying to Conceive

Do you have a question about Pregnancy? Check out EmpowHER’s pages. Sign-up, post a question, share your story, connect with other women in our community and feel EmpowHERed!

Common Pregnancy Myths

Christine Jeffries is a writer/editor for work and at heart, and lives in a home of testosterone with her husband and two sons. Christine is interested in women’s health and promoting strong women.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.