10 Early Signs and Symptoms of PregnancyPregnancy
Late or Missed Period
To start this off right, we are listing the most obvious sign of pregnancy – a late or missed period. After fertilization, some women don’t receive their period at all whereas others may experience a much lighter menstruation cycle than usual. This is typically the first of many symptoms you will encounter. A word to the wise – be sure to take a pregnancy test and make an appointment with your doctor to be certain.
Tender or Swollen Breasts
One of the earliest signs of pregnancy is tender, swollen or sore breasts, which can occur up to two weeks after conception. Yes, you read that right! The female body is nothing short of a work of art; as it prepares for baby’s growth, your body begins to excrete increased levels of estrogen and progesterone in order to enhance the growth of breast ducts and the formation of milk-producing cells. As a result, your breasts will undergo some changes, including soreness, tenderness and/or growth. You may also notice the darkening of your areolas, the area around your nipples. These symptoms will settle down once your body adapts to this rapid change.
As early as the first week of pregnancy, you may experience unusual fatigue. Don’t be alarmed! Your lack of energy is a symptom of increased progesterone levels coupled with lowered blood sugar levels and blood pressure, as well as increased blood production. To counteract this tiredness, try to fit some more rest time into your schedule and add foods to your diet that are rich in protein and iron. This duo may help you fuel up and lessen the severity of your fatigue.
Nausea or Vomiting
The infamous symptom: morning sickness. We know the struggle, ladies! Early pregnancy nausea and/or vomiting is a common symptom women experience soon after conception. We have all heard about it, right? But what some of you might not know is that it can occur at any time of the day; it is not restricted to a particular time of day. Cool, huh? Some women complain of sudden queasiness and vomiting spells. This is expected with your body’s rising levels of estrogen.
Spotting and Cramping
After conception, the fertilized egg attaches itself to the wall of the uterus. This is called implantation bleeding, which takes place 1-2 weeks after fertilization. You may notice temporary light spotting or vaginal bleeding. During this time, the cells lining the vagina are growing and thickening resulting in abdominal cramping similar to menstrual cramps as well as vaginal discharge.
Food Cravings or Aversions
Do you have a sudden intense craving for a certain food? Or, maybe you find yourself completely turned-off by a meal you used to be desperate for? There is no need to panic. You’re sane but you’re also pregnant. Much like the others symptoms listed, an increase of hormones is the result of pregnant women’s sudden craving or aversion to a specific food. This can last the entire duration of pregnancy. Fortunately, most women will not encounter it after the first trimester so you can go right back to eating your fave dish!
Early in pregnancy, your body is functioning with higher doses of hormones. This causes increased blood circulation, a change your body is not quite used to just yet. This can trigger mild but frequent headaches. Take up exercise, eat well-balanced meals and get plenty of rest and relaxation to help soothe your head pain.
You can blame progesterone for this. The increase of our little hormone friend causes your body muscles to relax, including the intestines. As you ingest food, the muscles of your intestines loosen causing the passing of food to delay. You may experience constipation as a side effect of this. Try drinking plenty of water and high-fiber foods to ease the discomfort.
If you find yourself raging at your partner one second and ugly weeping the next, it’s because of those darn hormones again. To put it simply, your emotions are out of whack. Not to worry, this is more common during the first trimester so your partner will know peace again slowly but surely.
Around 6-8 weeks after conception, you will notice that your bathroom schedule is a little off. With the increase of hormones pumping through your body, pregnant women urinate more frequently than normal. With the onset of vaginal discharge, your pee may appear cloudy. This is perfectly normal. If you have any discomfort, consult your doctor. Just make sure to stay hydrated with lots and lots of water!