What are the Signs and Symptoms of Pregnancy?
Most women are aware of some tell-tale signs of pregnancy. You’re likely to take an at-home pregnancy test at first signs to confirm your suspicions. Pregnancy tests are very advanced nowadays. Most will give you an accurate result from the first day of your missed period. Missing your menstrual cycle, morning sickness, and unusual food cravings are typically the first pregnancy symptoms that come to mind.
But there are many more pregnancy symptoms that are common during pregnancy, aside from just those early stages of pregnancy. Make an appointment with your healthcare provider to confirm your pregnancy and consult an OB/GYN and take medical advice and start your prenatal plan.
What are the Early Signs of Pregnancy?
One of the most common symptoms of pregnancy, especially in early pregnancy, your body produces high levels of progesterone, which can make you more feel more tired than normal. Fatigue and tiredness also rank high among early symptoms of pregnancy. During early pregnancy, levels of the hormone progesterone soar. In high enough doses, progesterone can put you to sleep.
Swollen and tender breasts
Your breasts may provide one of the first symptoms of pregnancy. As early as two weeks into your first trimester, hormone levels may make your breasts tender, tingly, or sore. Or your breast change may feel fuller and heavier.
Nausea and vomiting
One of many early pregnancy symptoms, “Morning sickness” is really a misnomer. The idea that you’ll only feel ill in the morning is a myth. Nausea and vomiting can affect you at any time of the day and usually begins at around 3-4 weeks. Pregnant women also have a heightened sense of smell, so various odors – such as foods cooking, perfume, or cigarette smoke – may cause waves of nausea in early pregnancy.
Food aversions or cravings
Foods you loved before might make you sick during pregnancy, and you may experience strong cravings for particular foods at odd hours. When you’re pregnant, you might find yourself turning up your nose at certain foods, such as coffee or fried foods. Food cravings are common too. Like most other symptoms of pregnancy, these food preferences can be chalked up to hormonal changes – especially in the first trimester, when hormonal changes are the most dramatic.
Fluctuating hormones can make us, pregnant women, moody, or irritable during pregnancy.
Experiencing headaches at the onset of pregnancy is another common early sign of pregnancy. Experts believe that the sudden rise of hormones in your body leads you to experience the headaches.
Headaches during pregnancy may also be caused by an increase in blood flow. There is an approximately 50% increase in the volume of blood flowing while you are expecting.
Sometimes a small amount of spotting or vaginal bleeding is one of the first symptoms of pregnancy. Known as implantation bleeding, it happens when the fertilized egg attaches to the lining of the uterus – about 10 to 14 days after fertilization. This type of bleeding is usually a bit earlier, spottier, and lighter in color than a normal period and doesn’t last as long. Some women also experience abdominal cramping early in pregnancy. These cramps are similar to menstrual cramps.
Some women experience mild uterine cramping early in pregnancy. Mild uterine cramping is another common sign of pregnancy in the first few weeks of pregnancy.
Pregnancy hormones can slow down your digestive system, causing constipation.
Symptoms of the Second and Third Trimester
You might notice uneven streaks of pink, red, or purple developing along your body as it expands. Your thighs, bottom, breasts, and abdomen are the most common places. Although stretch marks are permanent features of your skin, they should become less noticeable with time.
Pruritis (itchy skin)
Your skin might become itchy where it’s stretching. It is important to moisturize to relieve itchiness and help prevent stretch marks. Itching on your feet and the palms of your hands might indicate another medical condition called cholestasis.
Due to the hormones in pregnancy, your skin may develop darker patches of pigmentation on the face, shoulders, forearms, or the line running down from your navel. Some women’s nipples, genitals, and freckles become darker or more pronounced. Be sure to protect these areas by wearing SPF 30 or higher while outdoors.
Pregnancy can lower some women’s blood pressure, which can lead to dizzy spells when getting up or laying down too quickly. Take it easy when changing positions and drink plenty of fluids.
Increased Vaginal Discharge
White, watery discharge is normal during the second trimester. You can wear panty liners to keep yourself more comfortable. If the discharge has a green or yellow tint, has an odor, or if you develop pain or itching in your vagina, you may want to have a pelvic exam to check for infections.
Don’t be surprised if you feel like you have to pee more often. Increase urination starts for most people between 6 to 8 weeks.
You will find that frequent urination will pick back up or continue throughout your pregnancy as the expanding baby and uterus place pressure on your bladder. As a result, you’ll need to urinate more often. A panty liner can help you manage leaks when you cough, laugh, or sneeze.
Round ligament pain
That sharp, stabbing feeling in your lower pelvic area can be the result of round ligament stretching and tightening. This ligament attaches the front of your uterus to your groin. The tightening causes a spasm on either one or both sides of the groin. The pain may be triggered by sudden movements, like laughing, sneezing, or coughing.
These are swollen veins appearing around the anus that can cause itching and pain. You can use an over-the-counter cream or a stool softener to ease the discomfort.
The veins in your legs and vulva can become swollen and purple during the latter half of pregnancy. You can’t really prevent varicose veins, but you can minimize them by moving around throughout the day, propping your legs up when resting, and wearing supportive hosiery. The veins should improve after delivery.
As your baby grows and your body changes to sustain it, you will gain weight. Many women ask how much weight they should be gaining. We know that a woman of average weight tends to gain around ½ to 1 pound each week during the third trimester. However, every woman is different. Your doctor will give you guidance based on your specific case and help you keep a healthy weight for your body.
Swelling in your hands, fingers, feet, and ankles is another common symptom of pregnancy. You can reduce swelling by elevating your feet when you’re sitting for a long period of time or at night while you sleep.
One in three women will experience some anxiety and depression during pregnancy. Although these feelings are normal, we still take them seriously and want you to feel comfortable talking to us about your concerns. There are resources and therapy options available for you.
These daily signs of being pregnant can be pretty tiresome, but in no time at all, your due date will be here, and you’ll be taking your baby home.
If you are experiencing signs of pregnancy or have any questions about getting pregnant, please talk to your doctor.
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