Whether you’re trying to get pregnant or simply suspecting such a drastic change in your body, it is useful to know how early pregnancies are manifested. As it is a time when significant hormonal changes take place, they also trigger a variety of different symptoms. That is why we prepared this short breakdown of the most common early signs of pregnancy you should be aware of:
Missing a period is usually the first sign of a pregnancy that women notice, even though it is not entirely accurate since some women can still experience light bleeding during the time of the expected period. If you’re planning to have a baby, you have probably been tracking your period closely, and noticing that it’s late or non-existent is a clear sign to do a pregnancy test.
Nausea and Vomiting
More than 50% of pregnant women experience a condition called “morning sickness”. Its main symptoms are vomiting and nausea, followed by a common loss of appetite. And even though the condition is described as an issue that only strikes in the morning, a large number of women actually experience it throughout the day. Morning sickness tends to start as early as the fourth week of pregnancy, and it often settles by week 12.
Other Common Conditions
Even though pregnancy is a wonderful period, it is often followed by some unpleasant conditions. None of these are direct indicators of an early pregnancy, but a large number of women experience backache, headaches, and breathlessness. Furthermore, it is also possible to experience jaundice, heartburn, indigestion, and constipation during pregnancy. Different physical conditions can indicate an early change in your body, and if you notice a persistent issue followed by at least one other common pregnancy sign, make sure to contact your gynaecologist for further guidance.
Fatigue is a frequent sign of an early pregnancy, and unfortunately for many women out there, sometimes it is here to stay until the baby is born. Oftentimes, it is caused by a massive rise in the sex hormone known as progesterone which is needed to help the baby grow and to support the maintenance of the pregnancy. Next, it can also be caused by anaemia, which is usually driven by iron deficiency.
Once you enter the early stages of pregnancy, you may experience mood swings that are actually similar to those you go through in the days before your regular period. Such uncontrollable shifts in emotions happen due to hormonal changes, and they usually happen during the first trimester when the levels of progesterone and estrogen change significantly.
During the course of the pregnancy, your breasts are very likely to become fuller, tender, and swollen. Again, the symptoms that you’ve probably already felt many times before your regular period. But even though the sensations are pretty much the same, if you’re actually pregnant, you will soon realize that the soreness gets more intense over time, and you may even notice changes in the physical appearance of your breasts. For example, the skin around the nipples might become darker and the veins may get much more obvious than before.
Increased Sensitivity to Smell
If the smell of food that you regularly prepare suddenly makes you feel nauseated, it is time to check whether you’ve conceived. An increased sensitivity to smell is frequently associated with morning sickness, and the sensation usually subsides after the first trimester.
Pregnancy is often followed by cravings for particular foods, especially those that are known to provide calcium and energy. The best examples of such foods are milk and other dairy products. On the other hand, you may also notice how you suddenly no longer enjoy foods that you used to like. Furthermore, some women even develop an unusual taste for non-food items like paper or soil. This condition is known as ‘pica’, and it usually indicates a nutrient deficiency that calls for expert advice.
Even though some of these points aren’t clear indicators of pregnancy, it is useful to know they can be related to it. Once you feel one or two symptoms listed above, and you get a positive pregnancy test result, it is clearly time to visit your OB and start planning for the excitement to come.