Let us begin with what reproduction means. As most of you know reproduction is the procedure through which organisms make other organisms like themselves. In the human reproductive process, there are two kinds of sex cells, also called gametes (GAH-meetz), which are involved. The male gamete, or sperm, and the lady gamete, the egg or ovum, meet withinside the women’s reproductive system. When sperm fertilizes (meets) an egg, this fertilized egg is known as a zygote (pronounced: ZYE-goat). The zygote then goes through a procedure of turning into an embryo and growing right into a fetus.
The male reproductive system and the female reproductive system are both equally needed for reproduction. But what you need to know is that the woman is the one who incubates the growing fetus and has the ability to provide a kid into the world. Women are born with a huge number of potential ova (woman intercourse cells, additionally known as egg cells). However, it isn`t till after the onset of puberty, normally around age 12, that those cells are sufficiently mature to preserve life. The cells ripen on an everyday basis, however, the best one is set out every month until a girl reaches menopause. Menopause normally starts off evolving among a while of forty-five and 55. If fertilization and/or implantation does not take place, the system is designed to menstruate (the monthly shedding of the uterine lining). In addition, the female reproductive system produces female sex hormones that maintain the reproductive cycle.
Humans, like other organisms, pass some character traits of themselves to the next generation. We do this through our genes, the special carriers of human traits. The genes that the parents pass along are what make their children similar to them and others in their family, but also what make each child unique. These genes come from the male`s sperm and the female’s egg.
How much do you know about the female reproductive organs?
The outer part of the female reproductive organ is called the vulva, in other words- the covering. The vulva lies between the legs and covers the opening to the vagina and other reproductive organs. The fleshy area located just above the top of the vaginal opening is called the mons pubis. Two pairs of skin flaps called the labia (which means lips) surround the vaginal opening. The clitoris, a small sensory organ, is located toward the front of the vulva where the folds of the labia join. Between the labia are openings to the urethra (the canal that carries pee from the bladder to the outside of the body) and vagina. When girls become sexually mature, the outer labia and the mons pubis are covered by pubic hair.
The internal reproductive organs of a woman are the vagina, uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries.
- A Vagina is a muscular tube that takes in the penis when having sex and through it a child leaves the uterus during childbirth. It is the hollow tube that extends from the vaginal opening to the uterus. Because it has muscular walls, the vagina can expand and contract. This ability to become wider or narrower allows the vagina to accommodate something as slim as a tampon and as wide as a baby. The vagina`s muscular walls are lined with mucous membranes, which keep it protected and moist. The vagina’s purposes are to insert the penis during sexual intercourse, be the route (birth canal) where the baby leaves the female body during childbirth, and also the route by which menstrual blood leaves the body during the period. A very thin skin-like tissue called the hymen partially covers the opening of the vagina. The hymen often varies from woman to woman. Most women find that the hymen stretches or tear after the first sexual experience, and the hymen can bleed a little (which usually causes little pain). Some women who have had sex do not have much of a change in their hymens, though. And some women’s hymens have already stretched even before they have sex. The vagina connects with the uterus, or womb, at the cervix (which means neck). The cervix has strong, thick walls. The opening of the cervix is very small (no wider than a straw), which is why a tampon can never get lost inside a girl’s body. During childbirth, the cervix can expand to allow a baby to pass.
- A Uterus, shaped like an upside-down pear, with a thick lining and muscular walls, is an organ that holds and nourishes a growing fetus if an egg becomes properly fertilized. In fact, the uterus contains some of the strongest muscles in the female body. These muscles are able to expand and contract to support a growing fetus and then help push the baby out during labor. When a woman isn`t pregnant, the uterus is only about 3 inches (7.5 centimeters) long and 2 inches (5 centimeters) wide.
- The ovaries – the female gonads, they produce ova. When one matures, it is then released down right into a fallopian tube. At the upper corners of the uterus, the fallopian tubes connect the uterus to the ovaries. The ovaries are two oval-shaped organs that lie to the upper right and left of the uterus. They produce, store, and release eggs into the fallopian tubes in the process called ovulation (pronounced: avyooLAYshun). The ovary (pronounced OHvuhreez) is also part of the endocrine system because it produces female hormones such as estrogen (pronounced ESStruhjun) and progesterone (pronounced proJESStuhrone).
- Fallopian tubes are these small tubes that deliver ova from the ovaries to the uterus. This is where an egg waits to be fertilized. There are two fallopian (pronounced: fuhLOpeeun) tubes, each attached to a side of the uterus. Within each tube is a tiny passageway no wider than a sewing needle. At the other end of each fallopian tube is a fringed area that looks like a funnel. This fringed area wraps around the ovary but does not completely attach to it. When the egg pops out of the ovary, it enters the fallopian tube. When an egg enters the fallopian tube, the small hairs on the inner wall of the fallopian tube push the fallopian tube out of the narrow passage toward the uterus.
Do you know what happens after the egg gets fertilized?
When nicely fertilized with a person`s sperm, both through sex and artificial insemination, a woman`s egg includes all the essential material to produce children.
If a female and male have sex within several days of the female`s ovulation, fertilization can happen. When the male ejaculates (when semen leaves the penis), a small amount of semen is deposited into the vagina. Millions of sperm are in this small amount of semen, and they “swim” up from the vagina through the cervix and uterus to meet the egg in the fallopian tube. It takes only one sperm to fertilize the egg.
About 5 to 6 days after the sperm fertilizes the egg, the fertilized egg (pronounced: zygote) becomes a multi-celled blastocyst. A blastocyst (pronounced BLA Stuhsist), which is about the same size as a pinhead, is a hollow cell with fluid inside. Blastocysts burrow into the lining of the uterus, called the endometrium. The hormone estrogen thickens the inner wall of the uterus and enriches the blood. Another hormone released by the ovaries, progesterone, keeps the inner wall of the uterus thick with blood, allowing blastocysts to attach to the uterus and absorb nutrients from it. This process is called porting. When cells from the blastocyst nourish, another stage of development begins. At the embryonic stage, the inner cells form a flat circle called the embryo disk, which grows into a baby. The outer cells become a thin membrane that forms around the baby. The cell proliferates thousands of times, moves to a new location, and eventually becomes an embryo.
After about 8 weeks, the embryo is almost raspberry-sized, but all parts of it (brain and nerves, heart and blood, stomach and intestines, muscles, and skin) are formed. During the fetal period, which lasts from 9 weeks after fertilization to delivery, cells continue to develop as they proliferate, move, and change. The fetus then floats in the amniotic fluid in the amniotic sac. It receives oxygen and nutrients from the mother’s blood through the placenta. This disc-shaped structure attaches to the inner layer of the uterus and is connected to the fetus by the umbilical cord. Amniotic fluid and membranes protect the fetus from bumps and jolts in the mother’s body.
Pregnancy lasts an average of 280 days is about 9 months. When the baby is ready for birth, its head presses on the cervix, which begins to relax and widen to get ready for the baby to pass into and through the vagina. Mucus has formed a plug in the cervix, which now loosens. It and amniotic fluid come out through the vagina when the mother’s water breaks.
When the contractions of labor begin, the walls of the uterus contract as they are stimulated by the pituitary hormone oxytocin. The contraction causes the cervix to expand and begin to open. Hours after this dilation, the cervix is fully dilated (opened) for the baby to pass through. The baby is pushed out of the uterus through the cervix and along the birth canal. Usually, the baby’s head comes first. The umbilical cord comes out with the baby. It is clamped and cut close to the navel after the baby is delivered.
The last stage of the birth process involves the delivery of the placenta, which at that point is called afterbirth. After it has separated from the inner lining of the uterus, contractions of the uterus push it out, along with its membranes and fluids.
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