Essentials of Maternity, Newborn, and Women’s Health Nursing

 Maternal Adaptation during Pregnancy

2. Beth (age 18) is experiencing her first pregnancy and is now 24 weeks gestation. She tells you that she is “amazed by the changes that have happened to my body already.” Beth wants to understand what additional changes are going to occur to her “besides just getting a really huge belly.” Additionally, Beth relates to you that she is in her senior year of high school, is no longer involved with the baby’s father, and lives at home with her mother and 12-year-old brother. (Learning Objectives 3 and 5)

  1. Explain to Beth (in terms she can understand) what general body adaptations she will experience throughout the remainder of her pregnancy.
  2. What psychosocial adaptations may Beth experience as a result of being a teenage, single mother living at home?




Essentials of Maternity, Newborn, and Women’s Health Nursing




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Essentials of Maternity, Newborn, and Women’s Health Nursing

Maternal Adaptation during Pregnancy

“women’s health needs to be front and center it often isn’t, but it needs to be.” Cynthia Nixon. Maternity, newborn, and women’s health nursing is a unique nursing field focusing on women’s care all over their reproduction time. This nursing field demands a thorough comprehension of the specific physical, emotional, and social requirements for women and infants. Nurses working in the area must provide sympathetic care to women during labor and delivery, handle any complications during pregnancy and childbirth, and the nurse should provide education and support to new mothers (Perry et al., 2022). Nurses in this area play a significant role as they promote the health of women by averting illness through education and preventive care. This essay explores a case study of Beth, who is 18 years old and experiencing her first pregnancy at 24 weeks of gestation. This essay will explain the general body adaptations Beth is likely to experience throughout the remaining time of her pregnancy and the psychosocial adaptations Beth may experience due to her being a teenage single mother living at home.

General Body Adaptation to be Experienced by Beth during her Pregnancy Period

Pregnancy is a period of profound hormonal and metabolic changes endorsed by the body for a relatively short period where changes may occur in the skin, nails, and hair. For Beth’s case being her first pregnancy, it would be essential to congratulate her on her pregnancy and the fact that she is amazed by the changes that have been taking place in her body. It would also be essential to inform her that even as she progresses with her pregnancy, her body will still undergo crucial adaptations to facilitate her baby’s growth and development. Some of the adaptations Beth would experience during her pregnancy period include her uterus wall continuing to expand as her baby grows, causing her belly to get even bigger, and she starts feeling her baby moving around as they continue developing and being active (Murray & Hendley, 2020). As Beth’s pregnancy continues, she may experience pain in her back, hips, and pelvis due to the additional weight she will carry, as is normal during pregnancy, but exercises and other approaches would be essential to reduce the twinge.

Beth’s body will process more blood and fluid to sustain her developing baby, and it can cause bulging in her hands, feet, and face, and she may also experience shortness of breath or fatigue, and her hormone level will also progress to change, leading to mood swings, changes in appetite, and also changes in her skin and hair. Her skin may become more sensitive and prone to breakouts, and her hair may become thicker and more lustrous (Musaei, 2022). As Beth nears the end of her pregnancy, her body will start preparing for labor and delivery, where she may experience contractions as her cervix starts to soften and open, losing her mucus plug, and these signs indicate that her body is preparing for delivery. Beth needs to understand that pregnancy is different, and everyone has their own experiences which are not similar. Beth would be advocated to visit her healthcare provider in case of any questions or concerns on the changes she may be experiencing as they can provide advice and support, enabling her to have a healthy and happy pregnancy.

The Psychosocial Adaptations that Beth May Experience as a Result of Being a Teenage, Single Mother Living at Home

Beth being a teenager and a single mother living at home can lead her to numerous psychosocial adaptations. As a single mother, Beth can experience an intensified feeling of responsibility and is insistent on providing for her baby, and she still has challenges as she wants to complete her high school education (Lavie, 2018). This may make Beth feel overburdened and stressed because she may not get the appropriate financial and emotional support that she would get if she married or she had a family, and she may even feel isolated as she strives to complete her studies and at the same time provide for her baby. Beth is a teenager and still at school, and being a mother her age can make her feel ashamed as society does not appreciate teenage pregnancy placing a negative stigma and making her have low self-esteem. Beth can evacuate from social situations, which can have a negative impact on her health as she may feel that she is not capable of maintaining a healthy relationship as she is a single mother (Kumar et al., 2018). Her parent and siblings may provide her and the baby with support and the same time, feel frustrated with the additional responsibility of caring for a newborn baby, which eventually can make Beth experience trouble with her family members making her feel guilty for the additional responsibility affecting communication between Beth and her family. Beth, a single mother living at home, can result in numerous psychosocial adaptations impacting her mental and overall health. Beth needs to seek support from individuals she trusts, like healthcare providers and mentors, to help her overcome the challenges, providing her with resources to thrive as a single mother and a student.


Maternity, newborn, and women’s health nursing are vital elements of healthcare for women and their families. During pregnancy, women encounter numerous physical changes essential for the development of their unborn babies. Beth, a teenager and a single mother who lives at home may encounter psychosocial adaptations impacting her emotional well-being. Healthcare providers need to support women such as Beth by offering them education and resources to handle the changes, ensuring the best outcomes for the mother and the baby, and jointly working of healthcare providers can enable women to experience a positive pregnancy and a positive childbirth experience.


Kumar, M., Huang, K. Y., Othieno, C., Wamalwa, D., Madeghe, B., Osok, J., … & McKay, M. M. (2018). Adolescent pregnancy and challenges in Kenyan context: perspectives from multiple community stakeholders. Global Social Welfare5, 11-27.

Lavie, S. (2018). Wrapped in the flag of Israel: Mizrahi single mothers and bureaucratic torture. U of Nebraska Press.

Murray, I., & Hendley, J. (2020). Change and adaptation in pregnancy. Myles’ Textbook for Midwives E-Book, 197.

Musaei, S. (2022). The Effect of Pregnancy on the Skin. Eurasian Journal of Chemical, Medicinal and Petroleum Research2(1), 17-23.

Perry, S. E., Hockenberry, M. J., Cashion, M. C., Alden, K. R., Olshansky, E., & Lowdermilk, D. L. (2022). Maternal child nursing Care-E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.

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