For most women, a missed period is the most obvious symptom of pregnancy. A missed period generally indicates that a woman is in her second or third week of pregnancy. Some women, however, may experience abnormal periods, which can be characterized by a shorter-than-normal period or a period that is lighter than normal.
One of the early pregnancy symptoms is fainting due to low blood sugar levels. Women at this time might feel lightheaded after walking a short distance or when climbing stairs. This happens because the walls of the uterus swell and compress the arteries in the legs, which reduces blood sugar levels.
There are a few early signs of pregnancy that women should be aware of, such as extreme fatigue, nausea, mood swings and flu-like symptoms. Many women feel exhausted early on in their pregnancy, followed by a feeling of vomiting or queasiness (known as morning sickness). However, some women might experience this in the evening or night. Frequent urination is another sign of pregnancy, caused by the Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) hormone produced by the developing embryo. Mood swings can be quite severe during pregnancy and are similar to what a woman experiences with premenstrual syndrome.
Common pregnancy symptoms include changes in taste, developing aversions to foods you once loved, and vice versa. However, it’s important to note that these aren’t foolproof signs of pregnancy and not to rely on them entirely. These symptoms are usually due to the estrogen hormone present in women’s bodies during pregnancy.
Several hormonal changes in the body can lead to digestive problems during pregnancy. The hormone produced in the body at this time slows down bowel movement to absorb as many essential nutrients as possible. Doctors advise pregnant women to take smaller but more frequent meals. Slower emptying of the stomach may also cause acidity and heartburn.
There are a few early pregnancy symptoms that may be indicative of breast tenderness and swelling. Since women’s breasts play an important role after childbirth, the body prepares itself for breastfeeding. Nipples might be much more sensitive and the skin around the nipple (known as the areola) may darken.
Some other physical changes that can occur during pregnancy are back pain, cramps, and a high body temperature. Lower back pain specifically can be caused by several factors. Firstly, the added weight gain during pregnancy puts pressure on the lower back muscles. Secondly, the position of the womb makes it difficult to sleep comfortably on the stomach or back, so many women experience discomfort and sleeplessness. It is advised to use a maternity pillow during pregnancy to help alleviate some of these issues.
Many people are unaware of implantation bleeding and what it is. Implantation bleeding occurs when a fertilized egg attaches itself to the lining of the uterus. The egg implants itself usually around 10 days after ovulation and is a result of the egg burrowing into the lining of the womb. This can cause some light spotting or bleeding, which is often mistaken for a period.
Gaining weight is one of the most common pregnancy symptoms – but it can be difficult to tell if you’re actually pregnant just by looking at your body. The best way to confirm a pregnancy is by taking a pregnancy test, which will usually give accurate results after two days of missed periods. However, it’s always advisable to take at least two pregnancy tests to be absolutely sure.