In the very early stages of pregnancy, the woman's body begins to experience changes due to the nutrients and space she needs to create a new life. While experiencing some of these symptoms does not necessarily mean that you are pregnant, several at the same time may indicate a positive result. Have a look at the ten most common and learn how to recognize them:
1. Delayed or absent menstruation: It is the most obvious and clearly pointing towards pregnancy. This is, however, more difficult to detect in women with irregular periods or spontaneous amenorrhea.
2. Premenstrual pain: During the initial four weeks you may have pain in your lower abdomen due to the explosion of hormones, which can be mistaken for period pains.
3. Breast tenderness: It appears a few days into the pregnancy. Women's breasts are the first part of the body to get ready for the baby's arrival. Fat accumulates in the area, increasing the size and producing a tingling feeling.
4. Tiredness and fatigue: One of the main signs of pregnancy. So if you suddenly start to feel more tired than usual, and you think there is a chance you are pregnant, you might be right! This tiredness is due to decreased blood pressure, accelerated heart rate and increased basal temperature. The body is working for two, so it's completely normal it requires more energy.
5. Changes in the mood: Emotions will be affected by the big hormonal changes, meaning that moments of euphoria may be followed by others of deep sadness, and moments of joy followed by irritability. Just keep in mind the cause of this roller coaster, and don´t worry, your loved ones will totally understand.
6. Appetite might vary: Suddenly, some foods might be more appealing than usual. You may go from being super hungry to not hungry at all. You may even not be able to tolerate certain foods. Ah! the wonders of hormones!
7. A heightened sense of smell: Some women develop a heightened sense of smell for certain scents that they didn’t notice before. Others that you used to love might now be hard to bear... Don´t worry, this is called hyperosmia, again caused by the increased level of estrogens in your body, and it will go away, in some women it disappears after the third month, whereas in others it vanishes after labour.
8. Upset stomach or heartburn: The increased size of the uterus pushes the stomach this might cause reactions to certain foods. Changes in both the digestion and the secretion of gastric juices can make heartburn appear. To avoid it, try to drink a lot of water, eat fresh fruit and veggies, and more times in less quantities.
9. Nausea and vomiting are some of the first symptoms; Although they can occur at any time of day, they are more usual in the mornings. Some women experience them more than others. This nausea is caused by changes due to the embryo being in the uterus and the consequent segregation of the pregnancy hormone (HCG - human chorionic gonadotropin).
10. Acne: The endless hormonal activities can cause accumulation of fat on the skin, meaning that acne can appear in some areas of the body. You could be more affected if you have oily skin and prone to flare-ups after menstruation.
It is normal to experience several of these ten signs when your body is creating a new life, these might be indicators, but of course a pregnancy test will give you the final answer. And don’t forget to check with your doctor if you have any questions. There's no one better than a specialist to guide you through this stage.