Afraid of missing your monthly period? This article is intended to help you find out if you’re pregnant or not, as early as weeks after conception. There are some signs to determine you’re pregnant even before you’ve missed a period. Learn to know the signs.
First, a missed period serves as the primary first sign a woman is pregnant. However, not every missed period means your pregnant. There are other signs in the early stages of pregnancy. Missed or late periods happen for many reasons other than pregnancy. Common triggers can range from hormonal imbalances to severe medical conditions. Also, some women experience irregular menstruation.
The missed period is not always the best signal to find out that you’re already pregnant. There’s a higher chance of a woman being pregnant if the missed period includes some other symptoms. Here are the common early pregnancy symptoms before a missed period:
- Nausea: If you are already experiencing nausea before a missed period, then you could be pregnant. You need to wait for this signal and then get a pregnancy test. Most women only start experiencing morning sickness around the sixth week of pregnancy. However, you can experience nausea as early as days before a missed period.
- Swollen and tender breasts: If you find your breasts suddenly more sensitive, you could be pregnant. This is also a sign of an upcoming period, however, so this signal alone is not enough. The breast tissue feels more painful and swollen because the hormonal changes in early pregnancy trigger increased blood flow to your breasts.
- Tiredness and fatigue: You’ll get tired and feel fatigued as your body experiences changes and will start preparing itself for pregnancy.
- Eating habits will change: You’ll feel hungry more often and crave some foods that you didn’t enjoy before. Levels of estrogen in your body are changing. This increases your sensory organs and can cause a change in your food preferences and appetite.
- Spotting or a little bleeding: Spotting means any light vaginal bleeding which occurs at any time other than when a period is due. The blood colour is usually pink or light brown and lighter than your usual period. Light spotting can be a side effect of implantation bleeding from the egg attaching to the uterine lining.
There are some other reasons why it happens, but you could be pregnant. Spotting can also be common with the first day of your period. Try to consult your physician if the spotting seems unusual. You may also notice more vaginal discharge
- Cramping: This is actually one of the very early signs of pregnancy. You might notice some cramping as the embryo implants into your uterus. Again, cramping is also connected to premenstrual syndrome (PMS), so this alone is not enough to assume you are pregnant.
- Dizziness: Pregnant women are prone to dizziness and near-faints because blood vessels expand more during this period to facilitate increased circulation.
- Mood swings: During the first trimester, many women experience random mood swings. This is due to the extreme changes in the hormonal levels in their bodies.
- Smell sensitivity: The sensitive sense of smell is believed to be an early symptom of pregnancy. The blood flow increases by up to 50% in the body of a pregnant woman, and it reaches up to the brain. It will affect the olfactory centres which can be responsible for smell sensitivity.
- Frequent urination: You may be frequently going to the bathroom more than usual. The reason for this is when the blood flow to the kidney increases, it makes the kidneys produce more urine.
- Frequent thirst: When frequent urination occurs, this might also be a trigger to frequent thirst. This can be a sign that you are pregnant, as your body needs more liquids or fluids for both you and the fetus.
- Motion sickness: This occurs, when you are riding in any transportation. Your body sends mixed signals to your brain, resulting in uncomfortable or uneasiness. If you have experienced motion sickness before pregnancy, you may be more prone to it while you are pregnant.
- Constipation: A lot of pregnant women get constipated during the first trimester. This could be due to the increase in the level of progesterone in the body, which relaxes a lot of muscles, including the digestive muscles. To get rid of constipation, it is important to have foods rich in fibre and lots of fluids.
- Weight gain: You’ll be more likely to gain a few pounds because a fetus is growing inside your uterus.
- Heartburn: This is due to the increase in the level of progesterone in the early months of pregnancy. The hormone relaxes all the muscles, including the one between the oesophagus and the stomach, resulting in heartburn.
Scientific Methods to Test Pregnancy
If you are still worried and not sure if you are experiencing signs of pregnancy, here are some of the scientific methods to verify pregnancy.
- Ultrasonography: A technique using echoes of ultrasound pulses to describe objects or areas of different density in the body.
- Pregnancy tests: These are used to determine if a woman is pregnant. Doctors analyze a sample of a woman’s urine or blood. They look for the presence of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). HCG refers to a hormone produced by the placenta. It is only typically present in a woman’s body when she is pregnant.
A woman might be able to determine she is pregnant or not even before a missed period. The above 15 symptoms help determine if a woman could be pregnant before a missed period. Missed period dates may vary and be different for each person, so there is no reason to worry. It is better to know these signs so that we are aware of pregnancy and can prepare. If you think you might be pregnant, speak to a medical professional.