It is relatively easy to identify a pregnancy in the later stages, but early pregnancy signs may not be as obvious. Pregnancy tests are fairly reliable these days, but they are not right 100% of the time. Women who are wondering if they might be pregnant can watch for some early signs that, when noted together, could indicate pregnancy.
Most people know a late period could indicate pregnancy, but various environmental, mental, and physical factors can also cause changes or fluctuations in the menstrual cycle. This potential sign only becomes more solidly linked to pregnancy when a period is three weeks or more overdue. However, it is possible to miss an entire period for reasons other than pregnancy.
Frequent mood swings are a big part of early pregnancies. While women may experience regular mood changes throughout the month due to hormone fluctuations aside from pregnancy, these can often be separated from sudden swings. Pregnancy influences hormones and neurotransmitters, resulting in instant changes to emotional and mental states. In most situations, this effect is noticeable.
Newly pregnant women may find their food preferences suddenly change and could become particularly sensitive to the smells, appearances, and tastes of food, even those they previously enjoyed. This occurs due to the overproduction of estrogen and hormonal imbalances. During early pregnancy, a woman may become a picky eater, and this reaction can progress as the pregnancy continues.
Women sometimes suspect pregnancy when they begin noticing physical changes such as unexplained weight gain. Although the belly does not start growing until about three or four months into the pregnancy, some women may bloat or notice unusual swelling. A woman who is noticing this symptom in addition to others that could indicate pregnancy should take a pregnancy test.
The development of a fetus causes extreme increases in internal activity. These demanding processes can quickly wear out a pregnant woman, and she will often end up feeling tired even when well-rested and after minimal exertion. After two weeks of persistent fatigue, a woman should seek medical attention, regardless of whether she suspects pregnancy.
During the early stages of pregnancy, almost every woman experiences breast growth. This physical change often results in tenderness, frequent itching, and possibly stretch marks due to rapid growth. Veins appear around the areolas to improve blood flow to the expanding tissue. Usually, breasts will increase one or two cup sizes during pregnancy.
Three factors make a pregnant woman visit the bathroom much more frequently during the first trimester. The first is the hormonal factor, as HCG hormone is active during pregnancy and causes excessive urination. Second, the expanding uterus exerts pressure on the bladder. Finally, additional blood flow makes the kidneys produce more urine soon after conception.
Pregnant women will sometimes experience period-like bleeding that can, in some cases, appear like a regular, if lighter, period. This sign can make some women assume they are not pregnant, while women who know they are can worry about problems with the fetus. However, spotting during the early stages of pregnancy is normal. The formation of the placenta in the uterus often causes minor bleeding. If the woman is concerned, however, she should speak to her gynocologyst or OB-GYN.
Nausea does not usually occur until month two or three of a pregnancy, but some women experience this sign as early as a couple of weeks after conception. Often, the nausea is more severe than that caused by a stomach ache. Some pregnant women vomit multiple times a day for weeks. Persistent nausea is a significant sign of pregnancy.
High Body Temperature
Due to increased metabolism during pregnancy, every pregnant woman’s body temperature increases from the normal 98.6 degrees F to about 100 degrees. Women may struggle to stay cool and prefer to avoid going outside on hot days. This symptom usually persists throughout pregnancy, but for some women, it comes and goes.