This is the function of the hormone relaxin in the pregnancy process

The function of the relaxin hormone in pregnancy includes preparing the uterine lining as a place for the fertilized egg to attach, assisting the implantation process, and relaxing muscles, bones, and ligaments to make labor easier.

During pregnancy, the body will produce various hormones to support the mother's pregnancy to run well and smoothly. One of the hormones that play a role in the process of pregnancy is the hormone relaxin.

This hormone may still be less popular with the hormones estrogen and progesterone. Maybe the mother is also still confused about the function of the hormone relaxin in the pregnancy process. Let's look at the following explanation in order to get to know the hormone relaxin further.

What is the relaxin hormone?

Relaxin is a hormone that plays a major role in the female reproductive process. As the name implies, the function of the hormone relaxin in pregnancy is to help "relax" a woman's body at the end of pregnancy in preparation for childbirth.

After ovulation, relaxin levels may increase to help prepare the uterine lining for a possible pregnancy. However, if fertilization does not occur, the level of the hormone relaxin will drop again until the next menstrual cycle.

Conversely, if you are really pregnant then relaxin will take over and work together with other hormones to support pregnancy. The function of the hormone relaxin in pregnancy can change according to the cycle or phase of a woman's reproduction. The function of this hormone will be different during menstruation and pregnancy.

The hormone relaxin plays an important role in the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, early pregnancy, and late pregnancy.

1. Luteal Phase

This is the menstrual phase that starts on the day of ovulation until the next menstrual period begins. Generally women experience the luteal phase for 12 to 16 days. In this phase, the function of the hormone relaxin is to work together with other hormones such as progesterone to prepare the body for possible pregnancy.

The hormone relaxin works with the hormone progesterone to thicken the lining of the uterus so that if fertilization occurs, the egg can attach properly to the uterus.

Relaxin and progesterone levels will increase rapidly when the sperm fertilizes the egg. However, if pregnancy does not occur, the relaxin and progesterone levels will decrease gradually and the uterine lining will thin again.

2. Early in pregnancy

The function of the relaxin hormone in the process of pregnancy in the first trimester is to help the process of implantation or implantation of the embryo into the uterine wall. This process also promotes the growth of the placenta. At this time, relaxin levels in the body are high.

In addition, the function of the hormone relaxin in early pregnancy includes:

  • Inhibits uterine contractions during early pregnancy to help prevent early labour.
  • Responsible for preparing the mother's organs for new roles during pregnancy, including regulating the function of the heart and kidneys so that these organs adapt to the needs of the fetus during pregnancy.
  • Helps relax blood vessels so that the mother's body can more easily circulate blood throughout the body and also the baby. During pregnancy, the mother's blood volume can increase by 30%-50%.

In addition to the beneficial function of the relaxin hormone in pregnancy, this hormone can also cause unpleasant early pregnancy symptoms such as indigestion. This is because relaxin can cause reduced bowel movements. However, this condition generally gradually improves with the development of gestational age.

3. At the end of pregnancy

Relaxin levels may decrease after the first trimester of pregnancy. However, the function of the hormone relaxin in late pregnancy is still very important, such as:

  • Relaxin will help relax the muscles, bones, ligaments, and joints in the pelvis to help ease the delivery of the baby.
  • Relaxin also softens and lengthens the cervix. This will open the cervix to prepare for labor.
  • Relaxin will encourage the rupture of the membranes that surround and protect the baby. But the rupture of the membranes does not necessarily mean the occurrence of labor.

At the end of this period of labor, the flexible mechanism of action of relaxin can make pregnant women feel unbalanced and unsteady when walking. During this time the mother should be more careful when walking.

In order for the body to function properly, the hormone levels in the blood must be balanced. Likewise, the hormone relaxin can have an adverse effect if the levels are too much or too little.

  • If the relaxin hormone level is too much

Relaxin levels that are too high are thought to cause premature birth. This may be related to the effect of relaxin which can promote premature rupture of membranes and cervical dilatation. However, further research is needed to support these findings.

  • If the relaxin hormone level is too low

Too little or low levels of relaxin can lead to a condition known as scleroderma. It is a thickening and hardening of the skin caused by the development of fibrosis and scarring of the skin and can also occur in the lungs, stomach, and blood vessels.

That's information related to the function of the hormone relaxin in the pregnancy process. Most women do not experience the harmful side effects associated with relaxin during pregnancy. However, consult your doctor immediately if you experience unusual pelvic pain because it may be a sign of complications that require special treatment.

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