Women have different experiences with symptoms early on in their pregnancy based on their health, family history, and unique biological makeup. If you’re trying to get pregnant, there are a few signs you want to watch out for that are key indicators of a bun in the oven.
When an embryo is implanted in the uterus, that means you are officially pregnant. This usually happens a week before your missed period, or six days after fertilization. Usually, symptoms of pregnancy start a week or two after a missed period.
The earliest you can take a pregnancy test at home is 1 to 2 weeks after conception. The most accurate way to know if you’re pregnant, however, is with a blood test at the physician’s office, and these are accurate at 6 days post-conception.
Symptoms of pregnancy
One early sign of pregnancy is breast changes. This is typically the first change women experience. The soreness, heaviness, and tingling in the nipples usually start around the sixth week of pregnancy.
You might also be extremely tired and more emotional than usual. Some women also experience a stronger sense of smell or intense food cravings. Increased urination can start around the eighth week of pregnancy. This is due to increased hormones, progesterone, and human chorionic gonadotropin, but it usually subsides by the second trimester.
Nearly 80 percent of women experience nausea and vomiting during the first trimester. The increased levels of estrogen and human chorionic gonadotropin cause this, but usually subside by the second trimester.
If you notice weight loss, dehydration, or that the pregnancy symptoms are too severe, it’s important to get in touch with your OB-GYN. You should also plan small and frequent meals, eat before you get hungry, consume a bland diet, and have soda and crackers before getting up in the mornings.
Consulting your physician
Generally, women should see their OB-GYN physician around the eighth week for their first prenatal appointment. It’s important that you make your appointment as soon as you find out you are pregnant. Here, they will measure your belly, take some blood, get a thorough medical background and history, and do a physical exam.
For the safest pregnancy, you should tell your physician everything about your past and family history. There are many misconceptions about pregnancy they can clarify for you, like that women should not eat fish or have sex while they are pregnant. This is your opportunity to ask all your questions and discuss your plans for your pregnancy and delivery.
At the beginning of your pregnancy, your uterus lining thickens, and blood vessels enlarge to provide nutrients to the fetus. The placenta, which is where the baby gets all their nutrients and oxygen, is formed by the eighth week of gestation.
During pregnancy, your heart has to pump more blood to the uterus, since the heart has to work harder to accommodate the fetus. Both your blood volume and cardiac output increase by 50 percent. The heart rate has to speed up to accommodate these changes by about 20 beats per minute. This is where heartbeat irregularities appear. This is normal, but you should still discuss it with your physician.
Thirty to 60 percent of women will become anemic during their pregnancy. This is due to the exponential increase in fluid volume in the blood, compared to the red blood cells. Blood volume increases 50 percent during pregnancy. Since blood volume increases more than red blood cells, anemia often appears on blood tests and is perfectly normal.
Some women get varicose veins during pregnancy. This is also common and happens more at the end of pregnancy, but some women get them right away. The enlarging uterus interferes with the return of blood from the legs, which can cause edema, swelling, and varicose veins.
The best way to prevent lasting effects is to wear loose-fitting clothing and elastic support hose, elevating the legs, resting frequently, and lying on the left side. This will relieve pressure on the inferior vena cava and allow blood to flow to the legs.
The second trimester is when women get that pregnancy glow we hear about so often. The symptoms of pregnancy from the first trimester have mostly resolved, you are not so big that you are uncomfortable, and you get to look forward to your bundle of joy.
At approximately 18 to 22 weeks, you can start to feel your baby move, which is an unbelievable and exciting experience. Around 18 to 20 weeks, you can get an ultrasound and see a detailed picture of your baby. Around 14 weeks, gestation is where you can find out the sex of your baby.
Schedule a visit
When you start to experience any signs of pregnancy, contact The Woman’s Clinic at (501) 664-4131 to schedule a visit. Our team of caring expert specialist at The Woman’s Clinic will help you determine if you are pregnant with an immediate test, and we can arrange ongoing medical care for the optimal health of you and your baby during this special time.