Early Signs of Pregnancy
The first signs of pregnancy can appear even before you have a positive pregnancy test. When trying to conceive, any small changes can seem like an indication of pregnancy. Knowing what signs may be a false alarm and when to take a pregnancy test can be confusing, so knowing what to keep an eye out for is important.
Early Pregnancy Symptoms
When do pregnancy symptoms start? The answer to this question varies widely from person to person. Some women begin to notice signs after about a week, while some women begin to notice pregnancy symptoms after a few months. When you are trying to conceive, one of the easiest signs to look for is missed periods. If it has been over a week since you are usually due to receive your period, this could be a sign that you’re pregnant. However, this is not a tell-tale sign as many women experience irregular periods. Frequent urination is another early indicator of pregnancy. The kidneys in pregnant women produce extra fluid, causing increased urination.
Hormonal changes during early pregnancy can cause a wide variety of changes that differ from person to person. Every pregnancy is unique, so experiencing anywhere from just one to all of these symptoms is not uncommon.
Nausea: Nausea is generally one of the first signs of pregnancy and can begin to occur as early as a week into your pregnancy. Many people associate this with “morning sickness”. However, nausea can occur at any time of the day and can range from a general feeling of nausea to actually vomiting.
Fatigue: Feeling more tired than normal is a common early symptom of pregnancy. This can last through the second trimester.
Mood swings: With such a big change in hormone levels, mood swings are another common sign. It is not unusual to feel more emotional or sad than usual.
Constipation & bloating: Similar to how you may feel at the start of a period, bloating can also be a sign of early pregnancy. Constipation can also occur as your digestive system slows down during pregnancy. Both of these factors can lead to your clothes fitting noticeably tighter at the very start of your pregnancy.
Swollen/tender breasts: Though usual periods can often make your breasts more sensitive, in early pregnancy this tenderness is more intense.
How Soon Can You Take a Pregnancy Test?
Many home pregnancy tests claim to be accurate as soon as one day after conception. However, testing this soon is more likely to lead to inaccurate results with either a false negative or a false positive. The best option is to wait 12-14 days after possible conception for the most accurate results.
When is the best time to take a pregnancy test? It is best to take your pregnancy test when you first wake up before you have eaten or drank anything. This is when hCG levels will be the highest. This can help detect your pregnancy faster so you can start receiving prenatal care as soon as possible. As soon as you’ve received a positive result, you should immediately schedule an appointment to see an OB/GYN.
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