Pregnancy Symptoms And Early Signs Of Pregnancy

Pregnancy Symptoms And Early Signs Of Pregnancy

Anticipation, excitement, and nervousness - a possible pregnancy can bring up a whirlwind of emotions! Whether you are trying to conceive (TTC) or nervously assessing subtle changes in your body and wondering if they could indicate new life, understanding early pregnancy symptoms may provide some clarity in the midst of uncertainties. Grab some saltines and keep reading as we explore common early pregnancy symptoms (hello nausea) and discuss what to expect in the earliest weeks. 

What Are The Early Signs Of Pregnancy?

Like we said, grab the crackers. Nausea is one of the most common early pregnancy symptoms. What’s known as morning sickness (pro-tip: this may occur at any time, day or night), can be due to those lovely pregnancy hormones that are beginning to rise. Not everyone experiences nausea, but in the worst cases, it can be so extreme that it interferes with daily life. Excessive nausea and vomiting could be hyperemesis gravidarum, a serious condition during pregnancy that requires treatment. Thankfully, most pregnant women manage nausea  well with plenty of rest, water, and bland foods. Here are some more common early pregnancy symptoms: 

  • Tender or swollen breasts. This is also due to hormone fluctuations, but discomfort in the breasts typically subsides towards the end of the first trimester. 
  • Increased urination. Early in pregnancy, your body begins to increase its amount of blood. As a result, your kidneys have to work overtime. This means more liquid will end up in your bladder. 
  • Fatigue. If you suddenly need two or three naps a day, it may be time to take a pregnancy test. Progesterone rises rapidly in early pregnancy, which can cause extreme fatigue. 
  • Missed period. This is the first sign of early pregnancy for many women. For some, this may be the only sign of early pregnancy. Everybody and pregnancy is different and there is no “normal” when it comes to early pregnancy symptoms. 

(1)


What are the most hidden pregnancy signs?

Now that we’ve covered some of the most common (or commonly talked about) pregnancy signs, let’s shed some light on some early pregnancy symptoms that nobody wants to talk about. 

  • Vaginal discharge. Many women experience vaginal discharge regularly. In early pregnancy, it is not uncommon for women to notice that their discharge has changed consistency or increased in volume. An increase in hormones coupled with an increase in vaginal blood flow are the culprits for this hidden pregnancy sign. 
  • Constipation. Again, thank you hormones. In early pregnancy, you may experience difficulty using the restroom. If this becomes an issue, up your fiber intake and drink more water. 
  • Mood Swings. Early pregnancy can be an emotional rollercoaster. Lean on your partner or support system when needed and practice self care as often as possible. 
  • Libido changes. Your libido may change; then change again, and again before pregnancy is over. 

(4)

What is usually the first pregnancy symptom?

Arguably the most common first pregnancy symptom is: implantation cramping and spotting. Shortly after sperm fertilizes an egg, that egg embeds itself into the uterine wall. Under normal circumstances, when there is no pregnancy, that uterine lining would shed with the next menstrual cycle. Cramping associated with implantation can last anywhere between 1-3 days and could result in some minor bleeding. This early pregnancy symptom can be confused for normal symptoms of your cycle since implantation cramping and implantation spotting may occur around the time your period is due. So, while this is a common first pregnancy symptom, these symptoms don’t necessarily point to the creation of a new life. Cue the dreaded two week wait. After implantation, hCG begins to rise and a pregnancy test should soon be able to tell you that you are pregnant; but it could take up to two weeks or more to build up to a detectable level. 

(2)

How soon do early pregnancy symptoms start?

Most symptoms begin to creep in between 4-6 weeks pregnant. (3) This is because hCG, the pregnancy hormone, along with others like progesterone, are building up in your body. Hormones are often to blame for most early pregnancy symptoms. If these symptoms have you feeling pretty awful, don’t worry, most of them largely subside by the second trimester when the placenta takes over hormone production. Ah, the glorious second trimester - this begins only 14 short weeks after conception. Hang in there! 

What does it feel like when you first get pregnant?

If you asked a group of mothers what it felt like when they first got pregnant, you would likely get a wide range of answers. On this spectrum, you might hear that some women only experienced a whisper of fatigue as they continued on with life as they know it, largely unphased. You might also hear from women who had to press pause on their life to accommodate for necessary naps or excessive vomiting. There is no “normal” early pregnancy experience. Your lifestyle habits, overall health, diet, and stress levels could, at least in part, influence a more positive early pregnancy. Remember to eat healthy, relax, and get plenty of rest (you are creating a whole entire human after all, that’s hard work!)


Can I tell if I'm pregnant without a test?


In early pregnancy, the only way to know if you are pregnant is by taking a test. Urine pregnancy tests are the most common way that mothers find out that they are with child. Blood tests are also available through your OB-GYN to detect hCG levels, an indication of pregnancy. Your body could be hinting at pregnancy left and right - sore breasts, fatigue, nausea - but the only way to know for sure is by taking a pregnancy test. If anxiety is holding you back from taking a pregnancy test, enlist the support of your partner, a trusted friend, or family member. 


Conclusion

Pregnancy is a wild ride - and it can begin right after conception. Always lean on your support system to help you get through early pregnancy all the way to birth and beyond. For more support after baby is born, lean on Dreamland Baby. Our gently weighted sleep solutions are designed with safety - and good sleep - in mind. For your baby and you

Sources:

  1. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/getting-pregnant/in-depth/symptoms-of-pregnancy/art-20043853 
  2. https://flo.health/getting-pregnant/trying-to-conceive/signs-of-pregnancy/implantation-cramps#:~:text=Implantation%20bleeding%20and%2For%20cramping,period%20is%20expected%20to%20start.
  3. https://www.babycenter.com/pregnancy/week-by-week/4-weeks-pregnant 
  4. https://www.healthline.com/health/pregnancy/weird-early-symptoms#mood-swings 

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