For women who are hoping to conceive, anticipation and speculation are high each month as you wait to see if you are pregnant. Of course, the only way to know for sure is to get a blood test -- store-bought pregnancy tests can be inaccurate -- but your body will also develop signs that point to pregnancy as early as a few days after conception. Because each woman is different, the strength and timing of each sign will vary.
Of course, a missed period is a big sign of pregnancy, but other signs can happen even before your period is due. A few days after conception, the fertilized egg implants itself in the thick uterine lining. During that time, many women experience cramps and sometimes a small amount of spotting. In addition, due to changes in the lining of the uterus, a pregnant woman may also observe a thin, white discharge from the vagina. This is normal and may continue throughout the pregnancy, according to the WebMD article "Pregnancy Symptoms."
Progesterone levels begin to increase shortly after conception. This hormone causes all sorts of changes in the body to happen -- and one is increased blood flow. This can lead to changes in the breasts, which can happen as early as a week after conception. Breasts may feel sore, tingly, heavy, tender to the touch and swollen. They may also appear larger, with darker areolas and more pronounced veins.
Yes, you'll be tired during your last trimester when you are lugging around all of that baby weight, but extreme exhaustion is also common very early in the pregnancy. This is because the increase in levels of that pesky but important hormone progesterone causes fatigue. In addition, your body is already redirecting nutrients and calories to the developing embryo, which can make you feel tired. The urgent need to take a nap fades for many women once the second trimester begins, according to Parenting.com article "16 Early Signs of Pregnancy."
Morning, Day and Night Sickness
Nausea is a classic sign of early pregnancy, and it can happen soon after conception, although it usually begins about six weeks into the pregnancy. In fact, up to 85 percent of pregnant women experience morning sickness, according to Parents article "13 Signs of Pregnancy." Again, hormones are to blame. The higher levels of hormones -- including both progesterone and estrogen -- can cause dizziness, as well as food and scent aversions; they can also slow down the digestive process. Together, these elements can trigger frequent trips to the bathroom. Not all women get morning sickness, and many who do find that it fades early in the second trimester. Some women, however, suffer from nausea throughout the pregnancy.