How reliable are the symptoms?
Pregnancy symptoms vary and differ for everyone. They are very easy to get confused with PMS (postmenstrual symptoms).
The best way to get to know about it is to take a pregnancy test at home or consult your doctor if you suspect that you are pregnant and also you just missed your period.
Home pregnancy tests are fairly trustworthy and reliable but often a woman gets false results too during the early days of pregnancy.
This can be due to several reasons that include a chemical or ectopic pregnancy or maybe you have taken certain medications due to which you may delay your periods.
Pregnancy Symptoms Vs. PMS Symptoms
It is often seen that a woman gets confused about her missed periods as pregnancy or delayed menses.
There are many initial symptoms of early pregnancy like breast tenderness, fatigue, mild cramping, and bloating.
These symptoms can also be signs that are approaching menstrual periods or are may be linked to premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
The best way to find the actual reason is the get a pregnancy test that can assure you that are these pregnancy signs or just a delayed period.
While pregnancy test and ultrasound are the only two authentic ways that can prove that you are conceiving but these early symptoms can also help you to think next.
It is studied that unless a woman produces a positive pregnancy test she is not considered as pregnant because often it can also be delayed periods instead of a missed period.
There is no way to know for sure that you are expecting unless you perform a pregnancy test.
But some woman does experience early pregnancy symptoms before their missed periods then normally arrives could actually mean that you are pregnant and you have hit baby!
This infographic highlights the early symptoms of pregnancy:
But keep this in mind that pregnancy symptoms often look similar to PMS symptoms. The early symptoms that some woman has experienced are:
1. Sore or sensitive breasts
Sore or sensitive breasts are considered to be one of the earliest changes that a woman may notice if she is expecting.
On touching, you may feel your breast tender, or fuller or heavier than usual.
The reason behind this is that your progesterone levels in the body must be rising that allows you to feel this change in your body.
Once it is confirmed that you’re pregnant, this symptom may continue throughout your pregnancy or in some woman at least till a few weeks of your pregnancy.
Breasts are known to be the first part of your body that receives a message when sperm meets egg.
Some woman feels that their breast are tingly, sore, full and some even feel it painful to the touch within days of conception as the hormonal level changes.
You may observe these changes simply stick around when you missed your period in actual.
2. Darkening areolas
Some women may also experience dark areolas (the area that is around your nipple).
You may feel this as early as one to two weeks after conception and is also considered as the first sign of pregnancy.
This change cannot easily be confused with PMS. You may also find it increased in diameter in just a few weeks after conception.
Another thing you may observe is that you may find tiny spots goosebump-like bumps on this area (the glands that will slowly lubricate your nursing nipples).
These signs of early pregnancy can also take weeks to show up and it is not easy for the woman to notice this change only a few could be able to realize this change in their areolas part.
3. Fatigue in early pregnancy
Fatigue is a common symptom that is observed in the early first months of pregnancy. The reason behind this is that there are hormonal changes that make you feel tired.
Also, your blood sugar and also your blood pressure levels are lower at this phase of life.
In this situation when it goes into baby-making and your hormones level is higher too, during the first four months it can be tough and you will feel sluggish and sleepy too.
Keep this in mind that often this symptom may not be identified properly and it can be due to over-stressing or not getting much sleep and you are suffering from PMS.
Just days passed after conception, you may start to get feelings like morning sickness and the reason behind this is that the hormones are changing, while nausea is more likely to rear its ugly head later in the four weeks when a woman is around 6 weeks pregnant.
Again, this symptom is not observed by every woman nor every pregnant woman get nauseous.
This could often refer to sings of PMS, a stomach bug or sometimes also food poisoning.
A woman usually gets confused with PMS and Pregnancy, it is very much important to differentiate both the things.
5. Sensitivity to smell
Some newly pregnant woman experiences this symptom throughout their pregnancy.
They report to their doctors that their nose becomes highly sensitive and they can even not tolerate even any sort of smell during their pregnancy.
The reason behind this is due to the increased level of estrogens hormone. But again this could also be a side effect of PMS so it should be checked as soon as possible to get the right cause of this symptom.
As every woman knows that bloating is known to be least-loved PMS symptoms but it can also be a prominent sign of increased Pregnancy-induced progesterone that helps to slow the mechanism of your digestive tract that will trap gases inside your intestines.
7. Urinary frequency
This is one of the common symptoms faced by women who are in their early days of pregnancy.
If you think you are peeing more frequently then it may be a sign of pregnancy before your period.
As soon as two weeks after conception around that duration when you are about to get period, your kidney starts to remove all the extra waste in your blood from the baby and passes out of your body.
Your uterus that is growing due to the baby also starts to push on your bladder and along with it your progesterone levels also start to increase which results in frequent urination during pregnancy.
8. Elevated basal body temperature (BBT)
If you are tracking your temperature, you know it that it typically increases around the time when the progesterone levels are high and when it is the time of ovulation.
Both things drop when you start with your periods.
But in the case of conceiving, your body temperature will remain high from ovulation till your pregnancy lasts.
You need to keep balance on your elevated temperature post-ovulation and if it stays increased; it’s definitely a good sign and you are pregnant.
9. Cervical mucus
This is also one of the symptoms of early pregnancy, if your cervical mucus becomes creamy and stays the same after ovulation, it will be a good sign indicating that you are pregnant and in this situation, your pregnancy test will be positive too.
10. Implantation bleeding
This is also one of the symptoms of pregnancy. A woman may experience slight implantation bleeding or you can say light spotting about ten to fourteen days after conception.
Implantation bleeding usually occurs about a week before you are expecting your menses.
This bleeding will be a lot less and lighter than your usual periods. This bleeding will stop just after one to three days.
You may also feel pain that may be moderate, mild or even it can be severe. It is estimated that according to a study, there are 28% of women who are associated pain with light spotting or bleeding.
These implantation bleeding lasts for few days and it does not need any treatment. If its pregnancy it will automatically stops.
In this situation you need to avoid smoking, using illicit drugs or even drinking alcohol that can lead to heavy bleeding and can finish your pregnancy if occurred.
11. Mood swings
One of the symptoms of early pregnancy is mood swings. A woman may suffer from mood swings and she won’t be feeling good in any way.
This may often be mixed with PMS too but yes we can say that it can be a symptom of early pregnancy too.
12. High blood pressure or dizziness during pregnancy
In most of the cases, the high and normal body temperature will decrease in the early months of pregnancy. This may lead to a feeling of dizziness as your blood vessels start to dilate.
It is very difficult to determine high blood pressure during pregnancy.
It may increase or develop during early pregnancy and often can be dangerous too but it can be used before the situation gets worse.
You need to refer to your doctor so you can keep check and balance with your blood pressure and establish a baseline for normal pressure reading.
13. Weight gain during early pregnancy
During the end of your first trimester, weight gain is the most common issue that is faced by the pregnant woman, the reason is that they face food cravings due to which they eat everything they like and gain their weight.
You may find an increase in your weight for up to 1 to 4 pounds in just the first few months.
The calorie requirement is not changed but still, your way of eating habits would vary and you may gain a lot of weight as your pregnancy increases.
In the later stages of your pregnancy, weight often spreads out between the:
- breasts area (about 1 to 3 pounds)
- uterus portion(about 2 pounds)
- placenta (1 1/2 pounds)
- amniotic fluid (about 2 pounds)
- increased blood and fluid volume (about 5 to 7 pounds)
- fat (6 to 8 pounds)
These can be the early 13 pregnancy symptoms that can be experienced before a missed period.
There are other symptoms too that a woman can experience and that too depends on a different woman facing different symptoms.
One of the symptoms also includes pregnancy glow and acne during early pregnancy, now again this can be confused with PMS but pregnant woman to face this problem of acne during pregnancy.
It is stated by many people to pregnant women that they are glowing in their pregnancy.
This combination of high blood volume and higher levels of hormones pushes more blood through your vessels and resulting in the body’s oil glands to work overtime.
This activity of your body’s oil glands helps your skin a flushed, glossy look. But on the other hand, some may also experience acne and that’s irritating during the pregnancy.
And believe me it takes a lot time to get rid of these acne marks after even delivering baby.
This is very common symptom that majority pregnant woman faces during their pregnancy.
Remember one thing, just because you are facing all these symptoms does not mean that you are pregnant unless and until you get it confirmed by pregnancy test or ultrasound.
But there are many experienced women who can easily identify with these symptoms that they are conceiving. Every woman will face different symptoms in every pregnancy.