Q&A: What are the early symptoms of pregnancy?
I'm feeling extra tired, crampy, and irritable, and we've been trying to get pregnant for some time. What are the early signs of pregnancy? Could this be it?
Women who are trying to get pregnant may be super sensitive to physical changes or early signs of pregnancy. For those who experience a surprise or unexpected pregnancy, the symptoms at first may be unnoticeable or chalked up to fatigue or PMS. When fertilization occurs and the embryo implants in to the wall of the uterus, hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin, the hormone of pregnancy) begins to rise. This hormone—in addition to another key pregnancy hormone, progesterone—is responsible for many of the early symptoms women experience in the early weeks of pregnancy.
The most common symptoms include:
- Missed period (not always a definite sign of pregnancy)
- Frequent urination
- Nausea (morning sickness—which can last all day long—is usually worst during the first trimester)
- Tender, enlarged breasts (as your body adjusts to pregnancy, this will improve)
- Odor aversion (up to 40 percent of women experience this)
To deal with these symptoms, take naps when possible, make sure you are staying well hydrated and nourished, and avoid foods that bother your sensitive olfactory senses. Make an appointment soon to meet with your doctor to discuss symptoms and confirm your pregnancy.
Hang in there! Many of these symptoms will diminish as the first trimester comes to a close.