Do you think you can be pregnant? So, this can be a moment of great illusion … or much apprehension! Whatever your feelings, you can prepare in the best possible way for what awaits you if you discover the early signs and symptoms of pregnancy.
If you want to know for sure if you are pregnant, you will need to buy a pregnancy test kit at the pharmacy (or even online if you want more discretion). However, if you know what to look for, you may detect some early signals to know if you will soon eat for two.
Let Flo show you the first 10 most common symptoms of early pregnancy.
1. Delay in menstruation: how many days should you wait?
Many of the early signs of pregnancy are very similar to those you would have before the arrival of menstruation, so do not reach premature conclusions! None of the following signs confirm pregnancy, so take them as a general indication and nothing more. You will have to have a pregnancy test if you want to confirm the conception.
Of course, the absence of menstruation is the most frequent reason why a woman suspects that she is pregnant and that she is motivated to have a pregnancy test. Still, pregnancy is not the only reason why menstruation can be missed. Your body may skip a cycle due to weight loss and gain, hormonal changes and stress, so you can’t be sure until your pregnancy test gives a positive result!
You may need to consider a pregnancy if at least one week has passed since the date you expected your period, but if you have an irregular cycle it may not be reliable. If there is any chance that you are pregnant, get a pregnancy test as soon as possible and make an appointment with your doctor.
2. Changes in the breasts
Perhaps you already know that you will experience changes in the breasts during pregnancy and, for some women, this is one of the first signs that there is a baby on the way. The large variations in your hormonal levels during pregnancy cause many bodily changes, such as in your breasts.
You may notice the following changes in your breasts:
- swollen breasts
- sore breasts
- sensitive breasts
- heavy breasts
- the areola (the area around the nipple) may darken
The pain or discomfort in the breasts can be annoying during the initial stages of pregnancy, but once your hormones calm down, you can expect the symptoms to subside.
3. Strange variation of your habits of going to the bathroom
If you are in the early stages of pregnancy, get ready for some changes in your habits of going to the bathroom! This is due to your hormonal changes and implies that you will have to incorporate your new habits into your day to day.
Prepare to urinate more frequently than usual from week 6. This symptom is common among pregnant women, but also keep in mind that other conditions – such as diabetes or urinary tract infections – can cause similar symptoms. For this reason, it is preferable to talk to your doctor if you suspect that the need to urinate frequently is due to something other than pregnancy.
During pregnancy, you will have more of the hormone progesterone circulating in your system. Although this is perfectly normal, constipation is one of the annoying side effects of progesterone. This is because it delays the passage of food through your gastrointestinal system. If you are one of the many women who experience constipation, as a result, drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, exercise and try to follow a diet high in fiber.
Shortly after conception, the fertilized egg adheres to the wall of your uterus. Among other symptoms, this can cause you to have abdominal cramps similar to those you have during menstruation. In fact, early pregnancy cramps are often confused with the onset of menstruation.
Colic during early pregnancy is mild and should decrease over time. Do not hesitate to consult with your doctor if the pain is severe or if it is accompanied by heavy bleeding or other worrisome symptoms.
Popular culture makes most people familiar with morning sickness. For many women, morning sickness is a common feature of the first days of pregnancy but is not limited to a specific time of day.
It is likely that morning sickness at the beginning of pregnancy is the result of the increase in hormones that circulate and can occur at any time of the day, although the morning is the most common.
6. Feeling tired
Pregnant or not, you probably know what it is to feel tired. Current work and social pressure can make most women feel that they don’t spend enough time with their pillow. Also, fatigue can be a very early sign of pregnancy. For many women, this can become an absolute exhaustion. This may occur from the first week of pregnancy.
Even at this early stage, increasing levels of the hormone progesterone in a woman’s body can cause unusual tiredness. At the same time, changes in blood pressure and blood sugar can contribute to the feeling of being lethargic and lack of energy.
If your low energy level is due to pregnancy, try to devote more time to rest throughout your day. Allow yourself less social life in exchange for more time to recover, and let your co-workers know that you may need their support. You may also discover that adding some more protein and iron to your diet may give you the encouragement you need in this early phase of pregnancy.
7. Food cravings
One of the best-known stereotypes about pregnant women is that of cravings for strange foods. As with many of the other symptoms at the beginning of pregnancy, having food cravings is due to changes in hormonal levels that follow conception.
The same hormones that can lead a woman to despair over a specific type of food can make her consider other foods absolutely disgusting. The aversion to food can be of such severity that even the thought or smell of it can cause very unpleasant nausea.
For some women, cravings and aversion may continue throughout pregnancy, but in most cases, they disappear before the end of the first trimester. Until then, make sure you follow a healthy and nutritious diet for both you and your baby. Your doctor or healthcare professional can advise you.
8. Light bleeding or spotting
Implantation bleeding is slight vaginal bleeding that occurs between 6 and 12 days after fertilization. It should not cause more than a slight stain that you can notice in your underwear. Mild cramps similar to menstrual cramps may also accompany implantation bleeding.
If bleeding is heavy or colic is severe, you should contact your trusted doctor for advice.
In addition to light bleeding, some women notice a milky white discharge from their vagina. This is completely normal and results from the increased development of the membrane that lines the vagina. This flow may continue throughout pregnancy and does not usually lead to other symptoms. Check with your doctor if the discharge smells bad or if you have an itchy vagina; In that case, you may have a bacterial infection or candidiasis, which require treatment.
9. Unusual emotions
If your emotions are somewhat unbalanced at the beginning of your pregnancy, also blame the hormones. It is more common for this to happen during the first quarter, so be hopeful that calm will return after some time.
In the same way as in other early symptoms of pregnancy, continuing with your activities, following a healthy diet and maintaining your social life can help you deal with these symptoms.
10. Forgot your contraceptive
If you forgot to take one or more of your birth control pills and your period is not coming, you may be pregnant. Before you panic (or set up a party!), Get a pregnancy test to confirm it. If the result is positive, seek medical advice as soon as possible.
Does a pregnancy test show a reliable result at the beginning of pregnancy?
Today, pregnancy tests are very advanced. Most will give you a reliable result from the first day of the absence of menstruation. Some of the most recent tests have even greater sensitivity, and can be used before having a fault: from 4 or 5 days before the date, you wait for menstruation.
When should you visit the doctor at the beginning of pregnancy?
Every woman lives her pregnancy in a very different way and you should keep this in mind when you look for the early signs of pregnancy. Know the common signs and symptoms, pay attention to your body and the signals it emits, but don’t overdo it with what you can expect in relation to pregnancy.
You should also visit your doctor as soon as possible after conception. It will be the best opportunity to have a healthy and positive pregnancy, both for you and your baby.
Frequently asked questions about the symptoms of the first days of pregnancy
Is it typical to have mood swings during the first trimester of pregnancy?
Due to hormonal changes, mood changes occur shortly after conception. It is a very typical symptom in the first stage of pregnancy.
When can a pregnancy test be done at home?
The pregnancy test reacts to human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), the hormone that the body begins to produce when the embryo is implanted in the uterine wall (between days 7 and 9 after fertilization).
Home pregnancy tests can give a positive result even on the first day of the absence of the period. To obtain the most reliable result, it is advisable to do the pregnancy test between days 5 and 10 after the absence of menstruation.
Are unusual sensations in the breasts (pain, swelling of the nipples, hypersensitivity) are first symptoms of pregnancy?
Already in the early stages of pregnancy, many women observe that their breasts increase in size and become more sensitive. Sometimes, these feelings are painful.
The nipples may increase in size and begin to protrude. In preparation for feeding the baby, blood flow increases and milk ducts gradually develop in the breasts during pregnancy.
Does an elevated basal temperature indicate pregnancy?
Basal body temperature (TCB) increases after ovulation and usually remains elevated until menstruation. If the menstruation has not occurred and the TCB has not decreased, this indicates a possible pregnancy.
To detect it, the TCB must be measured at rest in the morning for several cycles.
Does spotting during planned menstruation indicate that you are not pregnant?
If you get pregnant, spotting can occur when you wait for the period to come or even a little earlier. Occasionally, it involves implantation bleeding, which occurs during the fixation of the embryo to the uterine wall.
What can colic indicate at the beginning of pregnancy?
Colic is similar to the pain that occurs during premenstrual syndrome and in the first days of menstruation, as well as the possible pain of ovulation. It is associated with the implantation of the embryo in the uterine wall.
At the beginning of pregnancy, is it common to have cold-like symptoms and depressed immunity?
Before implantation, the woman’s body weakens her protective functions so that the embryo can settle in the uterus. Immunity remains at low levels throughout pregnancy. This increases the risk of contracting several diseases, especially colds, and causes general weakness.
Do women lose weight during the first trimester of pregnancy?
Weight loss can be seen during the first months of pregnancy because of morning sickness and vomiting.
The significant increase in weight begins in the second trimester. The amount depends on your body mass index (BMI) before pregnancy, the number of babies in your womb, etc.
How can you fight morning sickness?
Many women control morning sickness by eating a small snack in bed. It is also recommended to consume small portions frequently, drink more liquids and add more liquid foods (soups, smoothies) to the diet.
Avoid spicy, fried and smoked foods. Take hot or cold food so that its smell is more neutral.
Do your habits of going to the bathroom change during the onset of pregnancy?
Immediately after fertilization, the uterus begins to increase and press strongly on the bladder. Hormonal changes can also affect how often you urinate. The feeling of wanting to go to the bathroom may subside for a while and then reappear more intensely during the last weeks of pregnancy.
Is sweating an early sign of pregnancy?
Sweating is one of the most characteristic signs of perimenopause and menopause. In addition, it can manifest at any age and indicate premenstrual syndrome. This is due to fluctuations in the levels of the female sex hormone.
It is not included in the list of early symptoms typical of pregnancy.
What changes in eating habits can occur with the onset of pregnancy?
The aversion to a series of foods, especially with strong flavors, accompanies morning sickness and usually disappears at the end of the first trimester. Changes in eating habits and taste preferences are frequent signs of pregnancy.
Is having the darkest areolas around the nipple the first sign of pregnancy?
The area around the nipples – the areolas – may darken during the first or second trimester, or not at all.
The bumps on the areolas, the ducts of the Montgomery glands, often become more prominent. They release a secretion that protects the nipple from drying out and has bactericidal properties.
Is it normal to have a milky vaginal discharge during the onset of pregnancy?
It is normal for a milky vaginal discharge (leukorrhea) to occur throughout the pregnancy. The increase in its amount is associated with hormonal changes.
This process begins almost immediately after conception. It is cause for concern if the flow has an unpleasant smell, causes burning and itching, because such symptoms may be associated with bacterial infections or candidiasis.
Is feeling swollen an early symptom of pregnancy?
Pregnancy is characterized by a high level of the hormone progesterone, which affects the smooth muscles, including those of the gastrointestinal tract. This causes abdominal bloating, constipation, diarrhea and increased flatulence.
To minimize the consequences, it is recommended to eat frequently and avoid fried and sweet foods, as well as cabbage and legumes, as they intensify the symptoms.