“Am I pregnant?”
You’ve been bugging yourself with the question. But you simply can’t wait until past your period (which is the best time to take a pregnancy test).
So what we’re going to do here is we’re going to find out if you are pregnant by going through the very early signs of conception. But first I want you to take a look at the checklist below.
If you checked most of the items above, then you are most likely pregnant. Let’s take a closer look at these signs and symptoms.
Pregnancy Symptoms and Signs
Nausea and heightened sense of smell
Nausea or morning sickness is one of the very early signs of pregnancy. It’s usually the one that makes most women suspect they’re pregnant. If you’re a first time mother, you might think that they can only occur in the morning (hence, the name). But the truth is, you can experience them any time of the day.
If you’re wondering what causes it, even experts aren’t sure. There are theories, however, that point towards hormones as the culprit.
Dizziness and headaches
Because there’s a sudden drop of blood pressure and blood vessels dilate during early pregnancy, many women experience dizziness and headaches.
Among the early signs of pregnancy are swollen breasts, another result of hormonal change. Your breasts will feel tender and appear swollen, your areolas will seem darker and larger. You may have to wait until your body has gotten used to the hormones for it to go away.
Cramps and backaches
As your body adjusts to accommodate the developing fetus, you will feel minor cramps and backaches. Generally, these are normal including the cramps you’ll likely experience around the time you’re supposed to have your period.
Food cravings and aversion to certain foods
Food cravings and aversions are caused by the increase of hormone productions of a pregnant body, especially hCG or human chorionic gonadotropin. If you’re really pregnant, this hormone will be the one to make the pregnancy test produce the positive result.
Another area that hormones unfortunately affect is your mood. You may have experienced mood swings while you are on your period and it’s quite similar in pregnancy. You are extra sensitive, you cry, and get angry easily. You know the drill.
Fatigue and shortness of breath
Fatigue is another common pregnancy symptom that occurs because of the increased production of progesterone. High amounts of this hormone causes feeling sleepy. Another possible reason why most pregnant women feel tired even at the early stages of pregnancy is the low blood sugar and low blood pressure they experience.
Constipation and bloating
Constipation is also an effect of hormonal changes. Your digestive system, as a reaction to these changes, slows down. Thus, leading to constipation. If you usually feel bloated during your period, you are more likely to experience the same during pregnancy.
Because there’s more blood the body pumps during pregnancy, the kidney is put to more work. This results to greater amounts of fluid in your bladder. This is very normal in pregnancy but there are cases when you may have to deal with accidental leaking.
During the early stage, around 4th week from your last period, you may experience spotting or what we call implantation bleeding. It may appear like period but it is much lighter in color.
When do you start to feel these symptoms?
This may be contrary to what you’ve thought but the week of your last menstruation is the first week of your pregnancy. Yes, regardless if you weren’t pregnant at that time yet. Following this calendar, most of the symptoms we’ve talked about earlier occur on your 1st to 4th week of pregnancy.
Things you have to watch out for
If you think there’s really a big chance you might be pregnant, here are the things you should look out for.
As we have talked about earlier, urination is a common pregnancy symptom. Sadly, so is accidental leaking. More than half of women experience this and it can continue to occur even after giving birth.
Incontinence is most likely to occur if there’s pressure exerted. For instance, if you laugh or sneeze.
While you’re pregnant, your body utilizes great amounts of your water to form the placenta. In the last stage, it will also be used to develop the amniotic sac. This is why pregnant women are more at risk of dehydration. Make sure that you drink enough water.
Women who usually experience breakouts during menstruation are more likely to have them during pregnancy as well.
In the early stages of pregnancy, particularly the first and the second trimester, more androgens are produced. As a result, there’s also an increase in the production of oil in the form of sebum. Clogging the pores, they cause bacteria to develop. Hence, the acne.
The abovementioned signs and symptoms will guide you on how to check pregnancy at home naturally. However, put in mind that these conditions are not unique to pregnancy. The truth is, it could be anything. Added to that is you may have already thought too much about being pregnant that your judgment is slightly biased.
To be sure, you must take a pregnancy test. The best time is around 2 days to one week after your menstruation date. Regardless of how you examine your body and recent experiences, you can’t really tell unless you have that reliable confirmation either from the home pregnancy test or from your physician.