Even though a missed period is one of the most common early pregnancy symptoms, there are many other signs that a positive pregnancy test may be in your future.
If your period is inconsistent or you have had unprotected sex recently, it helps to know what types of symptoms are most commonly associated with the early stages of pregnancy. Check out these 12 early signs of pregnancy:
1. Skipped Period
If you have regular periods and then suddenly your period is several days late, that’s a sure sign that something is up. While a pregnancy test is the only way to know for sure if you’re pregnant, a missed period is definitely a sign of pregnancy. However, if you have irregular cycles, this sign may be easy to miss.
2. Sore Breasts Or Nipples
If one or both of your breasts start feeling itchy, sensitive, tender, tingly, heavy, or swollen, you might be experiencing a common symptom of early pregnancy. You may also notice that your nipples look bigger, darker, or bumpier than usual. This is normal too.
Women typically begin feeling these changes anytime from one to two weeks after conception. These symptoms might go away after a few weeks, or they might continue until you deliver.
3. Light Bleeding and Cramping
About one-quarter of women have shared that they experienced light bleeding about a week after conception. This irritation and bleeding is caused by the egg implanting into your uterine lining. Also, the increased blood flow to your uterus during early pregnancy can cause cramping, which feels similar to the cramps you get with your period.
4. Food Cravings and Aversions
One of the most common symptoms pregnant women report is food cravings. Some women crave broccoli with cheese, chocolate, and salt, while others crave watermelon and Chinese food. Others even crave items that are not necessarily foods. Hormonal changes typically cause food cravings, and they may be strongest in the first trimester.
Food aversions are also common in pregnant women. For many people, food aversions are linked to the heightened sense of smell that comes with pregnancy. A food aversion may cause some women to feel nauseated by certain foods, even those they used to love, such as garlic.
5. Nausea and Vomiting
Many women are first alerted to a potential pregnancy by nausea and vomiting. This is called morning sickness, but the feelings may emerge during the day or night. The first signs of morning sickness may start about two weeks after the egg is fertilized.
Morning sickness is typically caused by the increasing levels of estrogen, another hormone, in your body.
Pregnancy hormones can do some unusual things to your body, like making you ravenously hungry. These hormones make your metabolism increase, allowing your body to use up caloric energy more efficiently.
However, this doesn’t actually mean you need a lot more calories, even though it might be difficult not to consume them! Ask your doctor how many extra calories you should be absorbing because the amount varies for every woman.
Are you tired all the time, like you can’t get enough sleep? If you are pregnant, this is likely the result of progesterone, a hormone, increasing. Fatigue is also caused by lower blood pressure and lower blood sugar levels, which are also commonly associated with pregnancy.
Many pregnant women have a difficult time falling asleep at night. The hormonal shifts can make it tough to fall asleep or stay asleep. Add in a never-ending urge to pee, and a good night’s sleep becomes pretty hard to come by.
Unfortunately, headaches commonly occur in women throughout pregnancy. Doctors believe this is the result of increased blood circulation in the body as well as an increase in different hormones. On the bright side, the headaches tend to be mild even if they are frequent. Find out which methods of headache relief you’ll need to avoid during pregnancy here.
10. Changes in Skin
A lot of women report oilier-than-usual complexions and pregnancy acne in the first two trimesters. These skin changes are due to an increase in androgens which may cause your skin glands to grow and produce more sebum. This oily and waxy material can clog pores and lead to some pretty terrible breakouts.
Have you found yourself huffing and puffing during physical activity that never seemed to bother you before? Many women have reported shortness of breath during pregnancy. Once again, pregnancy hormones are the culprit. As your body produces more progesterone, you’ll probably notice that you have to take more breaths than usual.
Hormone levels can influence many parts of your body, including the valve between your esophagus and your stomach. If this valve relaxes, it can allow stomach acid to enter your esophagus and lead to discomfort and pain. Pregnant women may be able to control some of these symptoms by eating smaller meals throughout the day and sitting up rather than lying down after eating. Try chewable supplements of black licorice.
Early Pregnancy Symptoms and Unplanned Pregnancy? Help Is Available
If you are experiencing early pregnancy symptoms and unplanned pregnancy, resources are available to help you. You can always contact Lifetime Adoption, even if you do not know what you want to do. You can still have access to helpful resources and emotional support during this difficult time. They also have an online pregnancy due date calculator you can use, at www.LifetimeAdoption.com.