What are the early signs and symptoms of pregnancy? How do you know that you need to get a pregnancy test done? All pregnancies are unique and pregnancy symptoms vary from woman to woman. You haven't missed the period yet but something seems different. There might be some clues that may point to pregnancy, but the only way to know for sure about pregnancy is by taking pregnancy test.
You need to be aware of these common pregnancy signs and symptoms to know if you are indeed pregnant or not:
- Spotting and Cramping: A few days after conception, the embryo attaches itself to the wall of uterus. This can cause spotting and sometimes cramping. This is called Implantation Bleeding that occurs from 6 to 12 days after the egg is fertilized. These cramps sometimes resemble menstruation cramps and some women mistake them with the bleeding caused due to periods. Besides bleeding, some women may notice white and milky discharge from vagina. This is caused due to increased growth of cells. This discharge can continue throughout the pregnancy and is harmless. But if you have a burning or itching sensation with bad odor from discharge, tell your doctor to check for bacterial infection
- Breast Shape Change: Breast changes are one of the earliest pregnancy symptoms. Hormone levels during pregnancy change rapidly just after conception. Due to these hormonal changes, breasts may become swollen, tender and sore within a week or two. Area around the nipples also gets darkened. Keep in mind that it will take several weeks to get used to such breast changes during pregnancy. Increased levels of blood flow causes swollen and sensitive breasts
- Fatigue: Feeling tired is normal in pregnancy. Just after conception, women may feel fatigued. Why? It is also related to the high levels of pregnancy hormones in the body. Low blood pressure, sugar level and boost in blood flow causes fatigue early in pregnancy. Take plenty of rest and eat protein and iron rich diet to offset it
- Nausea (Morning sickness) and Food Aversions: Morning sickness is one of most famous symptoms of early pregnancy. Exact cause of nausea is not known but pregnancy hormones contribute to this pregnancy symptom. It can occur at any time of the day but most commonly it happens in morning. Some women develop aversion to certain foods during pregnancy. That's also related to hormonal changes in the body. This effect can be so strong that you can't even eat your favorite food. Nausea and craving for food can last for the entire pregnancy. These symptoms are diminished at 13th or 14th week of their pregnancy. Eat healthy diet to get essential nutrients during this period to avoid any risks
- Missed Period: The most common earliest pregnancy symptom is the missed period. But not all missed periods are caused due to pregnancy. Women can also experience bleeding during pregnancy. Be aware of bleeding, if you are pregnant. If bleeding is more than normal, talk to your doctor immediately
There are many reasons of missed periods besides pregnancy. This could be due to:
1. Weight gain or loss
3. Hormonal problems
5. Birth pills
But if the periods are late and there is a possibility of pregnancy, then take a pregnancy test to confirm.
Other early signs of pregnancy:
Pregnancy causes hormonal imbalance in the body that can cause other symptoms also like:
1. Frequent Urination: This happens around sixth to eighth week after conception. This could be caused due to diabetes or any urinary infection, but if you are pregnant it's due to hormonal changes. Every woman have increased HCG levels during pregnancy, farther you go in pregnancy and when the size of baby grows, you have to take multiple trips to bathroom.
2. Constipation: During pregnancy, higher levels of progesterone hormone can make you feel constipated. It causes food to pass slowly through the intestine. Drink plenty of water and eat fiber rich foods to ease the problem.
3. Mood Swings: During first trimester, mood swings are very common due to hormonal changes in the body.
4. Headaches and Back Pain: Many pregnant women experience headaches and chronic backaches during pregnancy.
5. Fainting and Dizziness: This can be due to low blood pressure, low levels of sugar and hormonal imbalance.
6. Pay Attention if Smells or Certain Foods Bother You: You might start noticing that you don't like certain foods and smells. These smells may make you feel nauseated. Try to stay away from those strong smelling odors. It can happen to anyone during pregnancy and to stay away from this, switch to unscented cleaners and toiletries.
7. Breathing Problems: Sometimes, you may notice that you have some breathing problem in the early stages of pregnancy. Usually this is a mild symptom but if the problem becomes worst, contact your doctor immediately.
8. Raised Temperature: If you have been noticing basal body temperature, you might see that it rises around 1 degree and stays elevated throughout pregnancy. Though it is not a foolproof sign of pregnancy symptoms early you see, but it could give you advance notice of pregnancy sometimes.