Signs of Pregnancy
How do I know if I am pregnant?
If you suspect that you may be
pregnant - either because you did not use protection or you did
not use it correctly - and it is too late to use emergency contraception,
this can be very scary. Before you jump to conclusions about whether
you are pregnant are not, there are many signs and symptoms that
you can recognize if you are pregnant.
Here are the basics:
This is probably one of the more
reliable signs of pregnancy. Although some women will experience
implantation bleeding about the time of their period, it is usually
lighter and/or shorter than their normal period. This is why you
are asked for the first day of your last normal period. There
are even a few women who will have period throughout their pregnancy,
although this is rare, it does happen.
Morning sickness affects many
pregnant women, but by no means all. It's estimated that only
50% of women will experience morning sickness. It is not very
well named either. Any variation of sickness is applicable. Some
women are sick only in the night, some are sick all day, other
women it comes and goes with its own pattern. There is also a
difference in whether it's merely a queasy feeling or actual vomiting.
Some women will actually have a severe form of morning sickness
called hyperemesis gravidarum. This can lead to dehydration and
Breast tenderness is experienced
by many women, both during pregnancy and prior to their periods.
This usually goes away during the second trimester, or it may
be experienced as a heighten sensitivity.
Headaches are more common in pregnancy
due to the changes in hormones. This may be a pregnancy symptom,
but it is not necessarily a pregnancy sign. There are many things
that could cause this, including stress.
Some women do begin to bloat nearly
immediately. Again, this is a symptom of pregnancy, but not necessarily
a sign. There are also women who will have bloating prior to a
Vaginal discharge, without itching
or burning, may be a sign of pregnancy. The cervix is building
your mucous plug to block the opening of the cervix to help protect
your baby from infections, etc. You might notice a slight increase
in vaginal secretions. Again, it's shouldn't smell, burn or itch.
These would be signs of infection that would require proper medical
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