The Early Symptoms Of Pregnancy
Medically reviewed by Dr Sam Hay , FRACGP, GDip Sport Med, Dip Child Health). Dr Sam Hay has been a practicing general practitioner in Australia since 2005, with a special interest in Paediatrics.
Even before you miss a period, you may suspect – or hope – that you’re pregnant.
For some women, early symptoms of pregnancy begin in the first few weeks after conception.
Pregnancy symptoms can also vary in their intensity, frequency and duration.
The following early signs and symptoms of pregnancy checklist are only a guideline.
Many early pregnancy symptoms can appear similar to routine pre-menstrual discomforts.
So what are the signs…?
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Which of these did you experience? Source: supplied.
Take Vitamin And Mineral Supplements
Folic acid is an important vitamin for you to take before and during pregnancy to protect your babys health. Youll need to start taking folic acid at least 1 month before you get pregnant. You should take a multivitamin or supplement that contains at least 400 micrograms of folic acid. Once you become pregnant, you should take 600 mcg daily.4 Ask your doctor if you should take other vitamins or minerals, such as iron or calcium supplements, or a multivitamin.
When Will You Start Feeling Symptoms Of Pregnancy
Some women experience symptoms of pregnancy very early on, though many women do not. According to one study of 136 women who ended up having babies, 50% had some symptoms roughly eight days after their missed period, 70% had some symptoms roughly two weeks after their missed period, and 90% had some symptoms one month after their missed period.2
Many early pregnancy symptoms are also very similar to PMS, which can be confusing. I go into more detail about the early symptoms of pregnancy below.
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Mothers Responsibilities In 1 Month Pregnancy
Most of the future mothers may not be aware they are 1 month pregnant. Still if you are experiencing the symptoms described above, the pregnancy test came out positive or you simply suspect that you might be pregnant, there a few things you should keep in mind.
- Avoid stressing situations and excessively tiresome activities
- Make sure you keep your diet as clean as possible and avoid consuming alcohol
- Stay away from unhealthy environments, noisy surroundings, cigarette smoke, chemical exposure or extremely polluted areas
- Do not self-medicate yourself in case you catch a cold and most importantly do not use any type of antibiotics
- Make sure you dont lift heavy weights and choose a milder workout routine during this time
- Choose a doctor that will monitor your pregnancy and get in contact with him or her the minute you suspect you are one month pregnant or you received the pregnancy confirmation.
Want to know what happens next month? Heres what to expect when you are 2 months pregnant. If you want to know about Pregnancy week by week and read Important articles on pregnancy please visit our Home page.
Cramping And Spotting During Early Pregnancy
From week 1 to week 4, everything is still happening on a cellular level. The fertilized egg creates a blastocyst that will develop into the babys organs and body parts.
About 10 to 14 days after conception, the blastocyst will implant in the endometrium, the lining of the uterus. This can cause implantation bleeding, which may be mistaken for a light period.
Here are some signs of implantation bleeding:
- Color: The color of each episode may be pink, red, or brown.
- Bleeding: Bleeding is usually compared to your regular menstrual period. Spotting is defined by blood present only when wiping.
- Pain: Pain may be mild, moderate, or severe. According to a , 28 percent of women associated their spotting and light bleeding with pain.
- Episodes: Implantation bleeding is likely to last less than three days and doesnt require treatment.
Avoid smoking, drinking alcohol, or using illicit drugs, which are associated with heavy bleeding.
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What If I Don’t Have Any Symptoms
Like any month of pregnancy, this first one differs greatly from woman to woman. The timing of that first pregnancy symptom also varies widelyboth between women and between each of their pregnancies.
People have reported feeling symptoms of their pregnancy:
- One week after conception. You might notice some very light bleeding, known as “spotting,” as early as one week after conception. This is caused by the fertilised egg implanting in the lining of the uterus. Although it is noticeably lighter than a period, people often mistake it for one, especially as spotting can be accompanied by mood swings, cramping, and breast tenderness.
- At the end of month one. Many people start to suspect pregnancy when they miss a period. This is often the first symptom, and by this point, you can verify with a pregnancy test.
- Months into the pregnancy. Some women may not experience any symptoms at all during the first month. It is also possible to go several months without realising that you’re pregnant, particularly if you have irregular periods. In rare cases, unsuspecting women have been admitted to the emergency ward with mysterious stomach pains only to learn that they are in labor. This has happened to someone I know, so it’s not just something that happens on TV!
- At conception. Some women claim to have felt conception, either as a pain or as some other sensation. This is disputed by the medical profession, but who can say for sure?
What To Expect In First Month Of Pregnancy
During first monthpregnancy you will notice important changes that will happen to your body and mind influencing the way you feel, both physically and spiritually. The most important thing about this month is that the very first steps in embryo development take place during this time, which are crucial for the babys safety.
The 1st month of pregnancy may come with a lot of issues from simple ones like the first pregnancy symptoms noticed by the mother to be, to serious complications that may end dramatically in a miscarriage.
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Physical Changes: First Signs Of Pregnancy
- From the first month of pregnancy, many mothers-to-be expect to see the first signs: they usually notice changes in the womb, although the uterus has not yet increased in size, and it may feel somewhat swollen, with discomfort and shooting pain similar to the sensations of PMS.
- The first visible physical changes are the increase in breast tenderness, size and engorgement due to the rise of progesterone and oestrogen levels. There is also an increase in the urge to urinate due to increased blood flow, with more fluid passing through the kidneys.
- Some women have slight bleeding that lasts a couple of days. In these cases, although it generally has no effects, it is advisable to inform your gynaecologist.
Tingling And Numbness In Your Hands
Carpal tunnel syndrome tingling and numbness in your hands affects up to 60 per cent of women during pregnancy. It is caused by compression of the median nerve due to an increase in the tissue fluids during pregnancy.
Carpal tunnel syndrome may be mild, intermittently painful, or severe, which may cause partial paralysis of the thumb or loss of sensation. Symptoms usually resolve on their own soon after birth.
If you are experiencing tingling and numbness in your hands, inform your doctor or midwife. In very severe cases, your doctor may recommend corticosteroid injections or surgical treatment.
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Nausea With Or Without Vomiting
Morning sickness, which can strike at any time of the day or night, is one of the classic symptoms of pregnancy. For some women, the queasiness begins as early as two weeks after conception. Nausea seems to stem at least in part from rapidly rising levels of oestrogen, which causes the stomach to empty more slowly. We still don’t really know what causes morning sickness, but fluctuations in oestrogen levels, changes in blood pressure, and all the physical changes of pregnancy are likely major factors . 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. There are some hints and tips to help combat the effects of morning sickness.
GP Dr Sam Hay says, “Its worse when the stomach is completely empty. Having a pack of biscuits by the bed to make sure you are never completely hungry can help.
“Eating ginger or drinking ginger tea or ginger beer helps most expecting mums as well. In extreme cases chat to your GP or obstetrician about anti-nausea medications that are completely safe for you to take even during the earliest months of your pregnancy.”
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So When Did I Actually Get Pregnant
You are considered “pregnant” when your fertilized egg successfully attaches to your uterine lining. This process, which is known as implantation, begins about 6 days after fertilization and takes 3-4 days to complete.
Did You Know?
Up to 50% of all fertilized eggs leave your body with your period before implantation is complete.
Below is a video of how a baby develops during its first month. Knowledge of the biology taking place can help explain many early pregnancy symptoms, such as spotting.
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If I Take Antidepressants During My Pregnancy Will They Hurt My Baby
You may think you should stop taking medication for depression when you are pregnant. Remember that, if left untreated, depression can have serious effects for both you and your baby. If you are taking antidepressants and are thinking about getting pregnant , talk to your doctor first, before stopping any medication. You can also consult the following trusted resources: www.mothertobaby.org, www.medicinesinpregnancy.org.
Some newborn babies may have symptoms such as irritability, fast breathing, tremors and poor feeding if their mothers took antidepressants during pregnancy. These symptoms are usually mild and pass quickly, usually within 2 weeks. These babies typically respond well to a quiet environment, swaddling, skin-to-skin contact, and frequent small feeds. Serious problems such as heart defects or more severe breathing issues are very rare.After your baby is born, they will be watched closely to make sure they are healthy. Your doctors and nurses will make sure that you are both well before letting you go home. You may need to stay an extra day or two in the hospital so that they can be sure.
Breast Engorgement Its Usually The First Sign
Ovulation, and therefore fertilisation, occur during the first month. At the end of the month, there will be moments of uncertainty: am I pregnant or not? Are the symptoms I am feeling telling me my period is about to come or that I am expecting a baby? The discomforts of the first weeks of pregnancy are very particular and can change depending on the woman and even on the pregnancy. You begin to notice the first symptoms of pregnancy, such as breast enlargement, the urge to urinate, fatigue, abdominal pain and others.
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How Quickly Can I Know If Im Pregnant
Pregnancy is a different experience for each woman. Some women may suspect theyre pregnant within the first few days of pregnancy, while others dont notice anything until they miss a period. There are also some women who dont know theyre pregnant until months after conception.
The most clear-cut way to know if youre pregnant is to take a pregnancy test. When you take a pregnancy test, its measuring a hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin . This hormone starts building in your body from the moment of conception and will multiply rapidly in the beginning of your pregnancy. Despite its early appearance in the process, it takes some time for your body to build up enough hCG to register on a pregnancy test. Typically, it takes about three to four weeks from the first day of your last period before theres enough hCG in your body for a positive pregnancy test.
Whats The Difference Between Baby Blues And Postpartum Depression
The baby blues is a mild form of postpartum depression that many new moms experience. It usually starts 1 to 3 days after the birth and can last for 10 days to a few weeks. With baby blues, many women have mood swingshappy one minute and crying the next. They may feel anxious, confused, or have trouble eating or sleeping. Up to 80% of new moms have the baby blues. Its common, and it will go away on its own.
About 13% of new mothers experience postpartum depression, which is more serious and lasts longer. You are at a greater risk if you have a family history of depression or have had depression before.
Some of the symptoms include:
- feeling like you cant care for your baby,
- extreme anxiety or panic attacks,
- trouble making decisions,
- hopelessness, and
- feeling out of control.
No one knows exactly what causes postpartum depression. If you think you have the symptoms, its important to get help right away. Postpartum depression needs to be treated. Talk to your doctor or call your local public health office.
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Early Pregnancy Symptoms Vs Pms: Whats The Difference
Most early pregnancy symptoms before your period are strikingly similar to the side effects of PMS. However, youll only notice changes in your areolas if youre pregnant. A consistently elevated BBT and creamy vaginal discharge post-ovulation are also both relatively reliable signs of conception, but theyre certainly not foolproof.
Otherwise, the only way to know if other early pregnancy symptoms are due to a baby or PMS is to hold out until you can take a pregnancy test.
How Can I Prepare For Pregnancy If I Have Diabetes
If you have diabetes, keeping your blood glucose as close to normal as possible before and during your pregnancy is important to stay healthy and have a healthy baby. Getting checkups before and during pregnancy, following your diabetes meal plan, being physically active as your health care team advises, and taking diabetes medicines if you need to will help you manage your diabetes. Stopping smoking and taking vitamins as your doctor advises also can help you and your baby stay healthy.
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Pregnancy Weeks Vs Months
Planning for a nine-month pregnancy can be confusing if you look at the total number of weeks in the average pregnancy. When you break down the numbers, it would seem that pregnancy lasts 10 months, not nine.
There are about forty weeks in a full-term pregnancy. If you assume that a month is exactly four weeks long, that makes 10 months of pregnancy. The problem with this calculation is that it assumes that each month lasts 28 days. But most of our calendar months last 30 or 31 days.
To confuse matters even more, there is also the issue of when you actually became pregnant. While an exact date may not matter to everyone, you can estimate the date based on testing. By the time you have a positive pregnancy test, you are usually about four weeks pregnant.
The truth is that a full-term pregnancy lasts between nine and 10 months. To establish clarity about your stage of pregnancy and estimated due date, your practitioner will track your pregnancy in weeks rather than months.
What’s Happening In My Body
You probably don’t look pregnant at all. Most first-time mums don’t start showing until at least week 12. However, if this isn’t your first baby, then you may start showing sooner, as the muscles in your uterus and belly may have been stretched from your last pregnancy.
Pregnancy is dated from the first day of your last period. For around the first 15 days your body will be going through its normal routine â thickening the womb and releasing an egg or two. You’re not technically pregnant then. But around week 2 or 3, if an egg meets sperm and fertilisation occurs, then it’s showtime!
The fertilised egg then travels down a fallopian tube, dividing and redividing, until it reaches the womb. It will then bury itself into the wall where your little bundle will make itself very comfy for the next nine months. At four weeks, your egg is now an embryo â and you are pregnant!
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How Many Months Pregnant Are You
Women who are planning to have a child expect their pregnancy to last about nine months. But many expectant fathers and mothers wonder how many weeks there are in nine months. The average pregnancy lasts forty weeks from the first day of the last normal menstrual period.
To get a more specific prediction of pregnancy duration, most physicians and midwives use a gestation calculation like the one below to provide a personalized estimate. You can use the first date of your last period or the date of conception if you know it.
When Should I Call My Doctor About A New Pregnancy
If you have missed a period, taken a pregnancy test and gotten a positive result, your next step will be to call your healthcare provider for your first appointment. While scheduling, your provider may ask if you have already started taking a prenatal vitamin with at least 400mcg of folic acid. These vitamins are important in early pregnancy because they help in the development of your babys neural tube. The neural tube will become the brain and spine. Many healthcare providers recommend that any women who could become pregnant take folic acid at all times.
If you are planning a pregnancy, a preconception appointment with your healthcare provider is a good place to start. A preconception appointment is especially important if you take medication for a chronic illness or have other medical conditions like diabetes, hypertension or lupus.
During this appointment, your provider will discuss any current medical conditions, as well as your general health before pregnancy. This appointment is meant to get you into the best place for a new pregnancy.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 04/01/2020.
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