10 Signs & Symptoms Of Pregnancy: Am I Pregnant?

Medically reviewed by Maria Sarino, MD FACT CHECKED

Do you think that you may be pregnant? If yes, then you could do a pregnancy test that would tell if you are pregnant or not. Generally, ultrasounds and pregnancy tests are the sure methods that could tell you about your pregnancy. However, there are even other signs and symptoms you could look out for.

These signs and symptoms are not just restricted to a missing period. They may even include other symptoms like fatigue, morning sickness, sensitivity towards the smell, and so on. So let us take a look at the different signs and symptoms of pregnancy.

There could be natural ways to check pregnancy at home, however, you could also find pregnancy through the early signs and symptoms. Following are the different signs and symptoms of pregnancy.

  1. Cramps and spotting

    From the first to the fourth week of pregnancy, all the changes in your body occur internally. First of all,  the fertilized egg may help to develop the different organs of the baby.

    Then the blastocyst or the group of cells might get implanted in the lining of the uterus. This process could cause implantation bleeding or spotting that might be sometimes mistaken by the females for a light period.

    Due to this, you may face cramps and spotting during the early phases of your pregnancy. So, the different elements of the implantation bleeding are as follows-

    • You may face pain, which could be either mild, moderate or even severe. When a study of approx 4000 women was conducted, it showed how 28% of these women faced pain along with implantation bleeding.
    • The implantation bleeding may last for up to three days.
    • The colour of the bleeding might be red, pink or brown.

    During this phase, you may avoid drinking alcohol, smoking, or even using illicit drugs that could be related to heavy bleeding.

    At the same time, you should follow this list of things that you need to completely avoid during pregnancy.

    More on leg cramps here.

  2. Breast changes

    Another change that you could experience during your early pregnancy is breast changes. After conception, the level of hormones in your body might fluctuate rapidly.

    Due to this, your breasts may become sore or swollen after a week or two.  Besides this, the changes may also make your breasts tender to touch, or they may even feel heavier. Some of the women might experience that the area around their nipples, known as the areola has darkened.

    So you may need time to adjust to the new levels of hormones in your body. However, once you do so, you may be relieved by the breast pain.

    Other details are discussed here.

  3. A Missing Period

    Once the implantation is complete, your body introduces the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG).

    It is due to this hormone that your ovaries may stop releasing the mature eggs each month. So you may miss your next period after four weeks from conception. However, if you have an irregular period, then you may even take a pregnancy test.

    More on it here.

  4. Fatigue

    Normally, you may feel tired during your early pregnancy. You may start feeling fatigued after one week from conception.

    The reason behind this fatigue and tiredness is due to the high level of production of the hormone called progesterone. Some other factors that may contribute to fatigue might include low levels of blood sugar or even lower blood pressure. So you may take plenty of rest if you face fatigue related to pregnancy.

    This governmental article talks more about fatigue during pregnancy.

  5. Enhanced Heart Rate

    Your heart may begin to pump faster around 8 to 10 weeks of pregnancy. This could even lead to arrhythmias and palpitations due to the production of hormones.

    The enhanced blood flow may even continue later during pregnancy. But if you have any heart problems then you may always consult your doctor.

    Here is a detailed write up by the governmental organisation.

  6. Morning Sickness And Nausea

    One of the major symptoms of pregnancy could be nausea and morning sickness. Nausea during pregnancy may occur anytime during the day, but it is generally common in the morning.

    The exact cause behind this nausea and morning sickness is not known. However, the fluctuation in your hormones may cause them. Due to the hormonal fluctuations, you may even crave some foods and hate some foods.

    Here is Medline Plus writeup about morning sickness

  7. Frequent Urination

    Your body may augment the amount of blood pumped into it during pregnancy.  Due to this, the kidney processes more fluid and hence there is more fluid in your bladder. Besides this, the hormonal fluctuations may even control the health of your bladder during pregnancy.

    Due to this, you may go to the bathroom more frequently or sometimes It may even lead to accidental leaking. To deal with frequent urination, you could always plan your bathroom trips. Moreover, drinking extra fluids during this time could even help.

  8. Smell Sensitivity

    One of the early symptoms of pregnancy could be smell sensitivity. Smell sensitivity is a concerning symptom of pregnancy because it could even lead to vomiting and nausea. Sometimes, due to smell sensitivity, you may experience food aversions and may even not like eating your favourite dishes.

    A review was conducted to determine the relationship between pregnancy and smell sensitivity by looking at the reports of different pregnant women from 1922 to 2014. This review showed how pregnant women were more sensitive to smells during their first trimester.

    More on it here.

  9. Weight Gain

    Another symptom that you might see during the end of your first trimester is weight gain. You could gain anywhere between one to four pounds in the initial few months.

    However, your calorie intake may not change during early pregnancy, but it might increase as your pregnancy progresses. In the later stages, the weight gain may be due to the gain in-

    • About two pounds due to the amniotic fluid.
    • About one and a half pounds due to the placenta.
    • About 1 to 3 pounds due to the breasts.
    • About 5 to 7 pounds due to the increase in the blood and fluid volume.
    • About 6 to 8 pounds due to fat.
    • About 2 pounds due to the uterus.

    Additional info here.

  10. Heartburn

    During your pregnancy, the level of hormones in your body might fluctuate. This could enable the valve between your oesophagus and the stomach to relax, thus raising the chances of the stomach acid leaking. If your stomach acid might leak, then it could cause heartburn.

    You could prevent the chances of heartburn by focusing on eating several small meals in a day rather than eating a large one. You should also let your food digest properly by sitting upright for at least an hour after eating.

    Consulting your doctor about the different antacids that might be safe for the health of your baby and yourself may even help.

    More has been discussed here.

Other References

  • Here is more on body changes and other aspects.
  • This governmental article also talks about some of the common signs.

As soon as you find out about your pregnancy or any number of symptoms above, you should start taking care of your food and fruits intake from the starting period of pregnancy as well.

Also, you should discuss things with your husband and start making notes of all the essential things that you need to take care of during pregnancy.

What To Do Next If You Are Pregnant?

With a mix of emotions of shock, joy and anxiety, you may begin your journey of pregnancy. Here are five steps that you could perform once you know that you are pregnant.

  1. Calculating Your Due Date

    You could calculate your due date with the help of a simple calculator. This could help you to know about your different trimesters as well and take care of the health of the baby and yourself accordingly.

  2. Track The Growth Of Your Baby

    There are several online applications or websites that could help to track the development of your baby. By tracking the development of the foetus in the womb, you could know what to perform next.

  3. Consult A Doctor

    The first thing you should do when you know that you are pregnant is to consult a doctor. A doctor could tell you all the crucial aspects of pregnancy and may even confirm the same. Then you may change your diet and lifestyle accordingly.

  4. Check Your Health

    The most important aspect during pregnancy is to ensure that you are healthy. Only if you are healthy can you make sure that your baby is healthy. So you may check out your BMI using your height and weight. You could even calculate your BMI with the help of certain online applications and tools.

  5. Focus On Certain Things

    Once you know you are pregnant, you need to focus on certain things. First of all, you need to quit smoking. If smoke reaches the baby through the placenta, then it could be fatal for the infant. Secondly, you need to avoid the consumption of alcohol or liquor.

    Alcohol may prove to be quite harmful to the development of the baby. Thirdly, you may even reduce the caffeine intake that could be detrimental to the growth of your foetus.

    Since the level of hormones in your body fluctuates during pregnancy, you may always take a break and do things that could help you truncate your stress. Exercise is one of the best methods to truncate your stress during pregnancy. So you could take a walk with a friend or even focus on some light workout schedules.

    Another tip to perform when you are pregnant is to take up your prenatal vitamins.
    These vitamins or supplements could provide you with the essential vitamins and nutrients required during pregnancy.

6 Signs Of Healthy Pregnancy

  1. Nausea either with vomiting or without vomiting

    Nausea if accompanied by vomiting or even without vomiting, is a sign of healthy pregnancy. Some of the pregnant ladies might puke now and then. Whereas other may not feel like puking. So while you face nausea, you could divide your diet into short meals instead of consuming a large meal at a single time.

  2. Enhanced breast sensitivity

    Another positive symptom of a healthy pregnancy is increased sensitivity in the breast. Due to this, you may sometimes feel pain and tenderness in your breasts.

  3. Frequent urination

    You might face frequent urination even before you come to know about your pregnancy. Not only this, but the issue of frequent urination might increase during the 7th month. This is because of the increase in the pressure exerted on your blood that leads to frequent urination. Hence, urinating frequently could be considered a positive symptom of a healthy pregnancy.

  4. Modified cravings for food items

    This is one of the most common symptoms of a healthy pregnancy. As a pregnant lady, sometimes you may not feel like eating too sweet or sugary foods even though you loved sweets. On the other hand, sometimes say you may love eating a particular food item. Your love for this food item might even extend after pregnancy. So, the different types of symptoms related to the modified cravings for food items are a healthy sign of pregnancy.

  5. Problem of heartburns

    You could even face the problem of heartburn during your pregnancy. However, this is a natural and positive symptom of pregnancy. Generally, when the ears of your baby grow, then you may face pain and heartburn. This is a completely normal phenomenon and you may not confuse the presence of heart burns with the deteriorated health of your child. On the other hand, if you face heartburns, then it shows that your pregnancy is completely normal and healthy.

  6. Movement of the unborn child

    During a healthy pregnancy, your unborn child may start his or her movement from a minimum of 16 weeks to 24 weeks.
    Thus, if you experience any of the above 6 symptoms, then it could show that your pregnancy is on the right track. You need not worry about heartburns or the modified food cravings. This is because all these are positive symptoms of a healthy pregnancy.

Final Words On Signs Of Pregnancy

Since each woman is different, so you might face different symptoms of pregnancy. Sometimes the symptoms and signs of early pregnancy might be synonymous with the signs which you receive just before your menstruation.

Hence, you may confuse pregnancy with your menstruation cycle. Due to this, it is crucial to know about the different symptoms of pregnancy in a detailed manner.

At the same time, you should also know when the symptoms start to show. Generally, the first week of pregnancy is always linked with your last menstrual cycle.

Hence, you may calculate your expected delivery date considering your first week of pregnancy as your last menstrual period. This means you could calculate the delivery date by taking the first day of your last period.

Not to miss, if you are facing issues in conceiving. You might want to look at these tips for getting pregnant.

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