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Development Through the Life Stages Unit 4 P1 M1 D1 Health and Social Care Level 3

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Development through the life stages.
UNIT 4 P1 M1 D1
Development through the life stages.
UNIT 4 P1 M1 D1

* Introduction
In this essay I will be explaining the development throughout the life stages. This is including conception, pregnancy (1st, 2nd and 3rd trimesters), birth and infancy (0-3years), childhood (4-9years), adolescence (10-18years), adulthood (19-65years), older adulthood (65+) and the final stages of life. This will include physical, intellectual, emotional and social development. I will further this by discussing nature versus nurture, and conclude by evaluating how this will affect the physical, intellectual, emotional and social development.

* Conception
Each month a group of eggs in the ovaries grow in small sacks named follicles. Eventually one of these eggs leaves, this is ovulation. This typically takes places 2 weeks before the next period is due. Once the egg leaves the follicle it develops into the corpus luteum, releasing a hormone to thicken the uterus lining, preparing for the egg. Once released the egg travels to the fallopian tube, where it remains for 24hrs waiting for sperm to fertilize it. This takes around 2 weeks after the period. If there is no sperm to fertilize the egg, it travels through the uterus and falls apart. The hormone levels return to normal, and the uterus sheds the lining, starting the period. If a sperm does make its way into the egg, it fertilizes, no other sperm will be able to access the egg. As soon as fertilization happens the babies genes and sex are set. (Y chromosome being male, X chromosome being female). The egg remains in the fallopian tubes for around 3-4 days, but within 24hrs of the fertilization it begins to divide quickly into cells. It continues to divide as it travels through the tube and attaches itself to the uterus lining, this is implantation. The uterus lining will become thicker and the cervix will be plugged with mucus until the child is ready to be born. From the time of conception a pregnancy hormone known as HCG is in the blood and is detectable using a pregnancy test.

* Pregnancy
Pregnancy is a period in which a female carries offspring. Pregnancy can happen by having sexual intercourse or with assisted reproductive technology. Pregnancy usually lasts around 40 weeks starting from the last period to childbirth.
First trimester
During the first trimester women can either have a happy, healthy experience or a miserable one.
Breast tenderness: This is one of the earliest signs of pregnancy, it is caused by hormones being released, preparing the milk ducts to feed the baby.
Constipation: This can be caused by these rising hormone levels plus the extra iron the body receives from using prenatal vitamins.
Frequent urination: This happens because the uterus pushes down on the bladder which may cause more bathroom breaks or the feeling that you need to urinate.
Food cravings: More than 60% of women experience food cravings in their pregnancy, these cravings are generally fine as long as it is low in calories. The other type of craving is called ‘pica’ this is when the female craves something that isn’t a food, this can be dangerous for the woman and her child and should be avoided or reported to a doctor.
Fatigue: This happens because the women is supporting a growing child, which makes the mother worn out easily, taking naps throughout the day or increasing iron intake can help against this.
Discharge: Some women experience thin discharge early in the pregnancy this is called ‘leucorrhea’. During pregnancy the body produces more of the progesterone hormone, this causes the muscles to become relaxed and this can lead to acid reflux or ‘heartburn’.
Mood swings: This happen with most women and is caused by changing hormones and fatigue.
Nausea: Morning sickness is one of the most well-known side effects of pregnancy which effects up to 85% of women. Nausea is usually worst in the morning hence the name ‘morning sickness’. This can effect some women throughout the whole of the first trimester.
Weight gain: This is usually considered a good thing especially if the female is underweight at the start of the pregnancy, however it can be dangerous for the child to put on too much weight. Whilst pregnant you only need to consume and extra 150 calories per day.
Bleeding: Some women will experience slight bleeding which is referred to as spotting.

WEEK 1 + 2: At this stage the women is not pregnant yet, the body is preparing for the pregnancy. Conception occurs typically 2 weeks after the last period starts.
WEEK 3: The sperm meets the egg in the fallopian tube and form together creating a ‘zygote’. Each zygote tends to have 46 chromosomes, 23 from the mother and 23 from the father. These determine the child sex and traits. After fertilization the zygote travels down the fallopian tube towards the uterus, dividing to form cells called a morula.
WEEK 4: Once the morula arrives at the uterus these cells, now called blastocysts have separated into two. The inner cell will become the embryo and the outer will become its protection and form of nourishment. The blastocyst will embed into the uterus wall, this is called implantation.
WEEK 5: The third week after conception is when the embryonic period begins. During this period the brain, heart, spinal cord and other organs will begin to form. The embryo is now made of three different layers.
The first layer (ectoderm) will produce the outer layer of skin, peripheral and central nervous systems, eyes, inner ears and some connective tissues. The second layer (mesoderm) will form the foundation of the baby’s bones, muscles, kidneys and most of the reproductive system. Also the heart and blood vessels.
The third layer (endoderm) will become a tube lined with mucous membranes. The lungs, bladder and intestines will form here.
At the end of this week the child will be around the size of the tip of a pen.
WEEK 6: Growth is rapid in this week. The baby will take on a C shape, and small buds protruding from the child will soon form arms and legs. The heart has started pumping blood. The baby’s features will begin to form.
WEEK 7: Baby’s brain and face develops. Nostrils and eye lenses form. Arms take on a paddle shape. The baby is around the size of a pencil eraser.
WEEK 8: Arms and legs are longer and fingers have started to form. The baby’s body has begun to straighten out, eyes are visible, ear shape is forming, and upper lip and nose begins to develop.
WEEK 9: Arms develop bones and can bend at the elbow. Toes have formed. Ears and eyelids continue to develop.
WEEK 10: Childs head becomes more spherical, eyelids close to protect eyes, and neck begins to develop.
WEEK 11: Eyelids fused, ears low set. The baby’s external genitalia begin to form. The red blood cells form the child’s liver. Baby is around 2 inches.
WEEK 12: Baby’s face takes on a humanistic form. Fingernails develop. Baby is around 2 ½ inches.
Second trimester
Morning sickness and fatigue begin to fade away.
Backache: The extra weight gained from the pregnancy will put pressure on the back and cause it to be achy.
Bleeding gums: Around half of pregnant women will get bleeding gums. This is caused by the hormones sending more blood to the gums causing sensitivity and bleeding.
Breast enlargement: Soreness of the breasts should be easing of from the first trimester, but will continue to grow in preparation for breast feeding.
Congestion and nosebleeds: Mucus membranes in the nasal lining will swell, this is caused hormonal changes. This can cause nosebleeds and a stuffy nose which can lead to snoring.
Frequent urination: The uterus rises up from the pelvic cavity. This will relieve the constant urge to use the bathroom.
Hair growth: The hormones in the body can boost hair growth. This may cause hair to grow in places it ordinarily would not.
Headaches: These are one of the most common complaints among women whilst pregnant.
Hemorrhoids: This is caused by swollen veins around the anus. Extra blood will flow through these veins, plus the increased pressure of the uterus.
Quickening: About midway through the pregnancy some women may experience flutters in the abdomen, this can happen later for others.
Skin changes: Changing hormone levels in the body can cause women to experience red flushes in the face, people refer to this as ‘glowing’. Brown marks may also appear and also a purple line down the abdomen.
Spider and varicose veins: Circulation increases to send extra blood to the baby. The extra blood causes small red veins called ‘spider veins’. Pressure on the legs from the baby can also slow the blood flow to the legs causing the veins to become swollen and become purple or blue.
Weight gain: Morning sicknesses should have stopped by now causing the appetite to pick up. You will only need around an extra 300 to 500 calories per day.

WEEK 13: Tissue that will become bone begins to form in the head, arms and legs. Intestines return to abdomen. Urine is formed and released into the amniotic fluid.
WEEK 14: Red blood cells form spleen. Ovarian follicles appear in females and prostate forms in males. Sex will be apparent. Baby is around 3 ½ inches.
WEEK 15: The baby’s skeleton forms, and the hair pattern on the scalp develops.
WEEK 16: Ears are close to the finishing position and the baby may be able to do sucking motion with their thumb. Baby’s movements are coordinated.
WEEK 17: Toenails develop. Fat stores begin to form under the skin. This will act as insulation once the child is born.
WEEK 18: Ears stand on the side of the head, child may be able to hear. The baby will be around 5 ½ inches.
WEEK 19: A coating called vernix caseosa forms around the baby, this helps to protect the skin from damages that can be caused by the amniotic fluid. For females the uterus and vagina may form.
WEEK 20: Some women may now experience quickening in their abdomen.
WEEK 21: The baby is more active and able to swallow.
WEEK 22: The child is formed with fine hair called lanugo. This helps to keep the vernix caseosa on the skin.
WEEK 23: Skin becomes wrinkled and translucent. Fingerprints and footprints form. For males testes descend from the abdomen. For females, the uterus and ovaries are in place, along with the lifelong supply of eggs.
WEEK 24: Hair grows on the child’s head. The baby may be regularly sleeping and waking. The baby will be around 8 inches.
WEEK 25: Startle reflexes begin to develop. May be able to respond to sounds by movement.
WEEK 26: Lungs begin to produce surfactant. Fingernails are formed.
WEEK 27: 2nd trimester ends, nervous system and lungs will continue to develop.
Third trimester
Nearing the end of the pregnancy, the third trimester is usually the most challenging phase.
Braxton Hickscontractions: Mild contractions may happen, this is to prepare the body for labor.
Backache: Discomfort on the pelvis and hips may occur as ligaments loosen and the body prepares for childbirth. The back may still be sore from the extra weight being supported.
Breast enlargement: Close to the due date the women may notice fluid leaking from the nipples, this is called colostrum, and is the source of nourishment for the child for the first few days after birth.
Discharge: More vaginal discharge may happen during the third trimester. Close to the due date the discharge may be thick, white or contain blood, this is the mucus plug and it shows the cervix has begun to dilate in preparation for childbirth.
Fatigue: Carrying the extra weight, anxiety of the preparation for the baby, and waking up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom will make the women weary.
Frequent urination: The constant pressure on the bladder means constant bathroom breaks including throughout the night. Because of this pressure it may cause urination leaks when coughing or sneezing.
Shortness of breath: When the uterus expands it rises to just below the rib cage, this leaves less room for the expansion of the lungs, causing shortness of breath.
Spider veins: Spider veins tend to become worse during the third trimester but will usually clear up after the childbirth.
Swelling: This is caused by excess fluids (edema). The face and ankles can become bloated.
Weight gain: During the end of the pregnancy you should have gained around 25-35 pounds in weight. The extra weight is made up of the child’s weight, placenta, breast tissue, amniotic fluid and blood and fluid volume.

WEEK 28: Weight is gained, smoothing out the wrinkles in the skin. Eyes are partially open and eyelashes begin to grow. Baby will be around 10 inches.
WEEK 29: The child’s bones are fully developed but are still soft.
WEEK 30: Eyes are wide open. Red blood cells form the bone marrow. The child may have a good head of hair.
WEEK 31: Baby’s nervous system can now control the body temperature.
WEEK 32: Toenails are visible. The lungs are not fully formed, but the child will practice breathing. The body begins to absorb minerals and the lanugo begins to shed.
WEEK 33: Pupils can detect light, dilute and constrict.
WEEK 34: Fingernails reach fingertips. The baby will be around 12 inches.
WEEK 35: The baby begins to rapidly gain weight.
WEEK 36: The baby will take up most of the amniotic sack, because of this there may be less hits and kicks, but you will still feel movement.
WEEK 37: Organs are ready to function independently. The baby’s head may start to descend towards the pelvis in preparation for birth.
WEEK 38: The child has shed most of the lanugo. The toenails reach the toe tips. Baby develops a firm grasp.
WEEK 39: Chest becomes prominent. For males, the testes continues to descend into the scrotum. Placenta continues its supply of anti-bodies to combat infections.
WEEK 40: This is the due date, the baby will weight around 6 ½ pounds and be between 18-20 inches long.

* Birth and Infancy (0-3years)
Stephen Hawking was born Stephen William Hawking, in Oxford, England on 8th January 1942.

Whilst newborn Hawking will have had to take easily digestible foods, such as his mother’s breast milk, within the next weeks for his growth. At this stage Hawking’s brain will not be fully developed but he will be able to hear, distinguish tastes and identify the scent of his mother. Hawking will have been born with a series of primitive reflexes these are:
Rooting reflex: This usually disappears at around 4 months. Placing your finger lightly across the baby’s cheek will make the baby turn their head towards this and making sucking movements.
Moro (startle) reflex: This usually disappears at around two months. Making a loud noise will cause the child to throw their arms outwards and straighten the back and legs.
Stepping reflex: This usually disappears at around two months. The baby is held upright, feet on the ground, the baby will make walking movements.
Grasp reflex: This usually disappears gradually at around 3 months. By placing the finger in the palm of the child’s hand, they will grasp the finger tightly.
Fencing reflex: This usually disappears at around four to five months. Laying the baby on its back, gently turn the head to one side the arm to that side will shoot in front of him.
Righting reflex: This usually disappears toward the end of the child first year. Dropping a small blanket onto the baby’s face, the baby will shake its head until the blanket falls off. This evolves the older the baby becomes.
Thrust reflex: This usually disappears at around four to six months. Placing a baby spoon to the tip of the baby’s tongue, the baby will push this back out, preventing choking.
Withdrawal reflex: This reflex lasts throughout the child’s life. Bringing your face close to the baby’s, the baby will turn his face away, this is an attempt at self-protection.

Hawking will gradually pick up different types of body control which will develop at different periods. At around one month, he will be able to slightly lift his head. At six months he will be have the ability to roll over and to pass an object from one hand to another. At around ten months he will have the ability to crawl, at around twelve months he will be able to stand alone and two years able to climb stairs and run.

At this age group, Hawking will be going through the sensorimotor stage intellectually. According to Jean Piaget, a famous theorist, this was the stage in which the child would think without language. Hawking will have the ability to sense objects, he will have his reflexes from birth which will evolve into motor actions. He will be limited to sensing objects and performing motor actions. Hawking will not be able to remember or think about the world until he is around one years of age.

Hawking will begin to develop his language skills. At around three months he will begin to make babbling sounds, this is so he can learn to control the muscles involved with speech. At around twelve months he will begin to imitate sounds, which will gradually develop into the use of individual words. At around two years Hawking will begin to develop his vocabulary and will make two worded statements. At around three years he will begin to form simple sentences developing into the ability to ask questions.

Socially Hawking interacted with those who care for him. By two months he will begin to smile at faces. At three months he will respond to speech and at five months will be able to determine between those he is familiar with and those who he is not. He will build his first relationship whilst forming an emotional attachment with his parents. This will happen again during parallel play.

Emotionally Hawking will form his attachments to people in his life. These attachments will determine the ability to come emotionally later in life.

* Childhood (4-9years)
Hawking will continue to grow, although less quickly than during infancy. His practical abilities will continue to develop. At around age four he will be able to kick and throw an object. At around six or seven he will be able to skip or ride a bicycle. Intellectually Hawking will be entering the pre-operational stage. Hawking will be able to speak and use words and numbers, but will not understand what they mean.

His language will develop further at this age group. At around four years of age he will use clear sentences that strangers can understand, he will be expected to make some grammar mistakes. At five years he will have the ability to use adult grammar, whilst his vocabulary continues to expand. Socially, Hawking will still be emotionally attached to those who cares for him, however he will learn social behavior within a family environment. This will give Hawking a base to explore other social relations with other children. As Hawking ages he will become more independent and friends will become increasingly more important. Hawking will develop an idea of his self during his emotional development. His relationships with others will value his self-worth and self-confidence.

* Adolescence (10-18years)
During his adolescence Stephen will experience puberty at 14 years of age. He will experience a growth spurt and he will develop pubic and facial hair. Hawking’s testes and penis will enlarge and he will also have increased muscle strength. Stephens’s voice will also break and become deeper.

Hawking will go through both the concrete operational stage and formal operational stage. Hawking’s logic will firstly be limited to situations that are practical. Stephen will understand more easily if something is visual rather than imaginative. Once his intellectual ability develops more he has the ability to think logically using the abstract thought process.

During adolescence Stephen will take on secondary social learning. He will be influenced by those who aren’t in his family. During this stage Hawking will imitate dress styles, beliefs, cultural values and behaviors of friends. Hawking will experience the development of his own sexuality and the social transition to independence from his family. During this age group, emotionally, Hawking will develop his identity. He will form his identity so he can form sexual attachments, and a form of security when working with others.

* Adulthood (19-65years)
At the age of eighteen to twenty-eight Stephen should have been at the peak of his physical performance. However in his early adulthood he began experiencing clumsiness, and tripping. Hawking was diagnosed with motor-neuron disease at the age of twenty-one, during this time he was given the life expectancy of two years. At this time he began using a crutch and lecturing less often than before. At forty-three he contracted pneumonia, in his condition it was life threatening. Hawking was put onto life support, and doctors wanted to consider terminating it. Stephen had a tracheotomy and required constant nursing. He uses a software which allows him to select what he would like to say as he became unable to speak or write. Hawking lost the use of his hand and began to use the software using the muscles from his cheek.

Intellectually Hawking remained brilliant. His mind was not affected and he continues to do what he loves. Hawking has received many awards for his work, and is known for his publication of ‘a brief history of time’ a novel he wrote in 1988. Hawking’s speech deteriorated gradually, by the 1970’s only those closest to him were able to understand him. At this stage socially, Hawking should have been continuing to form friendship networks, however early on he became distant upon finding out about his disease. Hawking eventually embraced this and began opening his social networks and building friendships and working relationships. Hawking will experience the need for sexual relationships and marriage and parenthood. Hawking marries Jane Wilde Hawking in 1965. Hawking and his wife has three children all born within 14 years of the marriage. Hawking will later divide his time between his family and friends, larger social activities and working. Emotionally he will crave intimacy and attachment to a sexual partner. * Older adulthood (65+)
During older adulthood Hawking will experience weight gain and will be more at risk of diseases. This is increased because of his current disease. Socially Hawking will typically retire from his career, leaving him with more free time. At this stage Stephen will likely spend more time with his friends and family as opposed to extending his social network. Emotionally Hawking will begin to make sense of his life.

* The final stages of life
During the final stages of his life Hawking will develop a loss of physical capacity and mental capacity, the ability to keep up with the things around him will be lost. Any fears Hawking’s may have will predominate. At this stage Hawking will form self-security to cope with physical changes, aging and death. Hawking will lose height and his bones will be brittle. Hawking will want to spend time with his family and friends and this will be emotionally required for the stage he is at.

* Nature vs nurture
Nature versus nurture is an ongoing debate argued between theorists.
Nature is the idea that we are born the way we are, our genetic influences our being. The coding of our genes determines our traits, more dominantly, our physical attributes (hair colour, eye colour, height etc.). It is unknown whether abstract attributes such as personality, sexual orientation and intelligence are coded into our genes as well. One of the most popular issues in this debate is whether or not there is a ‘homosexual gene’. Other issues are things such as criminal behavior or aggressive behavior, and whether this can be justified by a ‘behavioral gene’. Some people do believe in this gene, based on observations of fraternal twins. When separated the twins showed similarities in behavior.
Nurture is the idea that it is how we are brought up, the social, economic and environmental factors in our life that determines our being. The nurture theory accepts that genetic influence over abstract traits could exist, however environmental factors are the real origin for behavior. This involves conditioning to induce a new behavior or alter an undesirable behavior being demonstrated by the child. Although the twins who were observed showed similarities in behavior once separated, they also showed change of behavior based on the environment.

* Biological Programming
The genes in the body provide instructions for structuring amino acids, which effect the proteins within the body cells. Thus, genes program the chemical foundation of the body. The body’s’ shape and size paired with behaviour, are dependent upon the interaction of biology and extensive environmental factors. Human beings are resultant upon biological programming and the environmental influences they become exposed to.

* Effect of experience vs heredity
Type 1 type 2 diabetes (got as result of unhealthy eating e.g. got as inherited from parents).
Nurture is the idea that it is how we are brought up, the social, economic and environmental factors in our life that determines our being. An example of the effect of this is type 1 diabetes vs type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is contracted by influences of experience. For example, if an individual had eaten junk foods containing high levels of fat and sugar content throughout his childhood, he has continued to do so into his adult years. The individual has contracted type 2 diabetes because of this eating habit. This is contracted because of experience.
Nature is the idea that we are born the way we are, our genetic influences our being. Type 1 diabetes is contracted through genes and is heredity. The body’s immune systems destroys cells in the pancreas called beta cells. These beta produce insulin.

* The theory of maturation
Some areas of development, for example the ability to speak a first language, are believed to be due to an in built genetic process. Children are naturally interested in sounds and sights in their surroundings prompting the ability to speak to ‘unfold’. Although development is believed to be guided by genes, genes cannot be operated without an environment. For example, a child born deaf will not begin to naturally speak a language, instead they may begin to learn to sign using sign language, if those within the child’s environment use that form of communication. The environment always relates with an individual’s genetic inheritance, including during maturational process.

* Infancy
The interaction of both nature and nurture determine the person the child will become.
During infancy, nature will have effected Hawking physical attributes, his hair colour, eye colour, skin tone and height will be from his parents. Hawking’s nature will also show from his temperament. Genes are responsible for the internal workings of the mind, but it is Hawking’s experiences in the responsive environment that will allow him to realize his genetic potential. The environment could, however, reshape the temperament over time. Hawking will physically progress during infancy at a fast rate, he will develop from requiring support to sit, to being able to independently sit. This will progress onto standing, standing unsupported and eventually walking, crawling and running. During infancy, physically Hawking will typically progress from sitting when supported to being able to use play equipment and partake in catch. Intellectually, Hawking will range from making noises when spoken to and progress on to continuing simple conversation. Socially, Hawking will begin at recognizing his own image and smiling at his parents to progressing on to playing with other children and understanding how to play and share (co-operative play). Emotionally, Hawking will start off as shy around strangers and develop into having a better understanding and control of his own emotions.

* Adolescence
The environment that Hawking’s subsides will determine some things in his life. This could affect his ability to learn or the social relationships he makes. Nurture will also help determine Hawking’s identity, his social connections will influence his beliefs, dress sense, cultural values and beliefs. Nature however, will continue to affect him into adolescence, he will grow during puberty, and his height will be from his genes. During adolescence, physically Hawking’s penis and testes will become larger and he will grow pubic, facial and underarms hair. His muscles will develop, chest and shoulders broadening and the Larynx (voice box) will grow deepening the voice. During this period Hawking may experience ‘wet dreams’ which shows the ability to ejaculate sperm. Intellectually, Hawking will learn to think in different ways and begin to understand more difficult concepts than children. He will learn synthesis information (the ability to blend information together from a range of different sources). Can use information to solve intellectual problems without visual aid. Emotionally, Hawking will experience mood swings caused by changing hormones. Hawking will begin to search for a sense of personal identity (potentially rebelling against the parent’s ideals). Hawking may also experience insecurity. Socially, Hawking will discover his need to develop independence, Hawking will also begin to search for a sexual partner.

Edexcel Health and Social Care Level 3 Book 1

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