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Human Development (Conception Birth) Essay

955 words - 4 pages

Human development can be described as the way a human body forms as the process of life begins. Along this process different kinds of mutations and diseases can occur, some may be natural and others self-afflicted (Sigelman & Rider). The area of human development I am focusing on is the time between conception and birth of a fetus, this is especially important because it is the making of a life (Sigelman & Rider). This time frame of nine months is called gestation. It is divided into three equal trimesters (Holt, Rinehart & Winston) This period of one’s life span occurs the fastest and has one of the most important environments (Sigelman & Rider).
Throughout the life of an embryo/fetus ...view middle of the document...

At 20 weeks the muscles of the upper and lower body begin to development and increase in dimensions. Eyebrows and nails start to grow and organ systems mature. The fetus is now grown to its full potential in mass and size in the womb and is now able to live on its own because it is full grown (Miller & Levine).
All of the features and characteristics of a fetus start to come together after a short two weeks from conception. The baby’s sex on the other hand is determined at fertilization. If an X chromosome is present the baby is a girl. If a Y chromosome is present the baby’s a boy. Over the course of 20 weeks the way a baby grows has to go almost seamlessly to form a healthy baby with 20/20 vision and no deformities (Website1). A disruption to the fetus form exposure to diseases or toxins can result in birth defects and developmental problems. There is currently no way to repair brain defects from early development. That being said, a mother is one of the main controlling factors due to the risks she decides to take after the time of conception (Website 2).
During prenatal development there are several drugs that can cause deformities in growth. The term for this is called teratogens. It is any type of disease, environmental agent, or drug that can harm a developing fetus. The mother’s womb is what is considered the fetus’s prenatal environment. There previously used to be a drug called Thalidomide, which helped relieve morning sickness. Even though this drug seemed to be harmless when tested on rats, it proved to be very dangerous when babies were born with all or parts of their limbs where missing, with their feet attached directly to the torso like flippers, or with deformed eyes, ears, noses, and hears. Tobacco also...

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