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symptoms of pregnancy

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Top 10 Early Signs of Pregnancy

Except for missed period, there are also many other signs and symptoms that indicate you’re pregnant. If you're newly pregnant, you may suspect or hope that you’re pregnant before you miss a period. The earliest signs of pregnancy are truly more than a missed period. They may also include tender breasts, morning sickness, fatigue, mood swings and so on.

1. Missed Period

Missing the period may be the most obvious early symptom of pregnancy, which is often what causes women to search for more details about the other pregnancy symptoms or directly take a pregnancy test to confirm. Once implantation is complete, your body will begin producing human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) which helps the body maintain the pregnancy and tells the ovaries to stop releasing mature eggs each month. A pregnancy test can detect hCG levels in your urine and show if you are pregnant.

2. Sore, Swollen Breasts

One common pregnancy symptom is tender, tingly breasts caused by increasing levels of hormones. As early as two weeks after conception, hormonal changes make your breasts sensitive or sore. Or you may feel your breasts fuller and heavier.

3. Fatigue

Feeling tired all of a sudden? Fatigue and tiredness also rank high among the early symptoms of pregnancy. During early pregnancy, rapidly increasing levels of the hormone progesterone may result in your sleepiness. At the same time, increased blood production, lower blood sugar levels, and lower blood pressure may team up to sap your energy during pregnancy. Besides, morning sickness and having to urinate frequently during the night can add to your sluggishness as well.

4. Mood Swings

Mood swings are also one of the most common pregnancy symptoms, especially in the first trimester. The flood of hormones in your body can make you more emotional, weepy, reactive than usual. Mood swings may cause the pregnant women to get the feelings of depression, irritability, anxiety, and euphoria easily.

5. Food Aversions

If you're newly pregnant, it's common to feel repelled by the smell of a bologna sandwich or a cup of coffee. Certain food cravings are also common too. This may be a side effect of rapidly increasing amounts of estrogen in your system. And like most other signs of pregnancy, these food preferences can boil down to hormonal changes - especially in the first trimester of pregnancy, when hormonal changes are the most drastic.

6. High Basal Body Temperature

If you've been charting your basal body temperature and you see that your temperature has stayed elevated for more than two weeks, you're probably pregnant. Your body’s core temperature may increase more easily during exercise or in hot weather. During this time, you’ll need to make sure to drink more water and exercise cautiously.

7. Frequent Urination

Shortly after you get pregnant, hormonal changes prompt a chain of events that raise the rate of blood flow through your kidneys. This causes your bladder to fill more quickly, so you need to urinate more often.

Frequent urination will continue or intensify as your pregnancy progresses. Your blood volume rises rapidly during pregnancy, which leads to extra fluid being processed and ending up in your bladder. The problem is compounded as your growing baby puts more pressure on your bladder.

8. Cramping and Spotting

From week 1 to week 4, everything is still happening on a cellular level. The fertilized egg creates a blastocyst (a fluid-filled group of cells) that will develop into the baby’s organs and body parts.

About 10 to 14 days (week 4) after conception, the blastocyst will implant in the endometrium, the lining of the uterus. This can lead to implantation bleeding, which may be mistaken for a light period.

9. Nausea, Morning Sickness

For some women, morning sickness doesn't occur until about a month or two after conception, but for others, it may start as early as two weeks. Most pregnant women with nausea feel completely relieved before coming to the second trimester, but for most others, it takes another month or so to ease up. Nausea and morning sickness usually develops around weeks 4 to 6. Not just in the morning, it can happen at any time during the day or night. Hormones may also play a role in causing this symptom.

10. Just "Feeling" Pregnant

If you just feel you’re pregnant even though you don’t exactly know what is causing this feeling, you probably are. You don’t really know about what symptoms a pregnant woman will have since you’ve never been experiencing pregnancy before. Maybe you just feel different and the differences make you feel there may be some changes in you. Many women have an intuition about pregnancy signs, and their intuition is often proven right. If you feel you’re pregnant, take a pregnancy test to confirm.

While there are many pregnancy signs and symptoms you can look out for, pregnancy tests and ultrasounds are the only ways to determine if you’re pregnant. Once you've gotten a positive result, make an appointment with your practitioner. After that, you may need some checklists about pregnancy DOS and DON'TS. Congratulations!

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