For many women, a positive test is the first unmistakable indication of pregnancy. A relatively fail-safe way to determine whether or not you are expecting, pregnancy tests are more accurate than not, helping you to identify the reality of the future that lies ahead.
However, a test isn’t necessarily the only way to determine your pregnancy. In reality, there are many physical symptoms that can raise red flags prior. Not all women experience the same side effects or any side effects at all, but understanding common symptoms and signs can help you determine whether pregnancy is a reality.
The first pregnancy symptoms often start shortly after conception, alerting women with a variety of indicators. The first symptoms may be subtle, like breast tenderness and an altered sense of smell, while others, like a missed period, are easier to notice.
A skipped period is generally the first sign of pregnancy, occurring within days or weeks of ovulation. Some women may see spotting, or light pinkish bleeding, instead, making it hard to determine whether a period is light rather than absent entirely.
Many symptoms set in within the first month of pregnancy. Besides the obvious – a missed period – many women notice subtle changes to the body, like sensitive or swollen breasts, fatigue, nausea, bloating, cramps, and the onset of morning sickness. In rare cases, women may notice motion sickness or vertigo.
In weeks four through eight, the signs noted in the first month are likely to accelerate. During the second month, women frequently experience an increase in both nausea and fatigue as well as mood swings. Morning sickness – which can occur at any time of day – tends to worsen during this time as well. Some women may also notice temperature changes and increased urination.
By the third month, almost all women will experience symptoms of some sort. In this time, you may notice high blood pressure, severe fatigue, increased acne, weight gain, heartburn, and a healthy flush. The first signs of a bump – the initial visible sign of pregnancy – may also become evident around week 12.
As pregnancy progresses, so do the symptoms experienced. Weight gain will continue, insomnia may worsen, and the frequency of urination increases. Some women may also notice strange cravings, a sensitivity to smell, swelling in the feet and ankles, and a thickening of the hair and nails.
If you are seeking advice or assistance throughout your pregnancy, from parenting resources to confidential options services, Thrive St. Louis is here for you. Please contact us today or make an appointment!
Sources: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/getting-pregnant/in-depth/symptoms-of-pregnancy/art-20043853?pg=2, Mayo Clinic Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy Harms, Roger W., M.D., et al, Part 3.