You have been trying to conceive and can't wait to take the test to see if you really did it this month. You may be wondering if there are any ways to know if you are pregnant in the weeks before a home pregnancy test can register the little pink plus sign. These are some common symptoms of early pregnancy that women may experience earlier than a test detects anything. Truly, however, nothing can prove that a woman is pregnant until a blood test, ultrasound, or other doctor's test confirms it.
Some women experience sore breasts as soon as two weeks after conception. Breasts become sore, tingly, full or heavy as a result of hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy.
The hormone progesterone skyrockets in early pregnancy, causing many women to feel fatigue early in pregnancy. In addition to the increase in progesterone levels, a woman's blood pressure and sugar levels decrease, and her blood production levels increase. Combined, these elements can make a woman feel very sleepy.
Pregnancy progesterone levels also cause food to pass through a woman's intestines more slowly than it normally would. Also, an increase in blood volume may cause a woman to become more dehydrated if she doesn't drink enough water to combat the increase.
Pregnancy hormones increase blood circulation. This increased circulation may cause a woman to get frequent, mild headaches.
Though it is often called "morning sickness," early pregnancy-related nausea can occur at all times of the day. Some women experience no nausea at all, others experience constant slight nausea and occasional bouts of vomiting. Occasionally a woman will experience such severe nausea that she experiences dehydration and/or malnutrition.
Faintness or Dizziness
During pregnancy, blood vessels dilate and blood pressure can drop. This can cause a woman to experience bouts of faintness or dizziness. Low blood sugar may also cause a woman to feel faint. Because blood volume doubles and hormone levels surge during pregnancy, it's not uncommon to feel "off."
During early pregnancy, once the embryo becomes implanted in the uterus, a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is produced. This hormone also is known to trigger frequent urination. A woman in early pregnancy may feel the need to use the bathroom throughout the day even if she does not have much urine to expel.
A Missed Period
Many women truly begin to suspect that they are pregnant once they have missed a menstrual period. While a missed period is an exciting (or scary) symptom, it may also be caused by factors such as stress associated with waiting to find out if you are pregnant. Some women mistake early pregnancy spotting for a period, but spotting typically occurs a few days after implantation, not around the time a period is supposed to arrive.
Warnings About Early Pregnancy Signs
All these symptoms may or may not be signs that you are pregnant. Many of them are simply cues that you are about to get your period or that you are sick. On the other hand, some women become pregnant, experience no strong symptoms and don't realize that they are expecting until a few months have passed. If any or all of the above symptoms apply to your case, however, you may want to invest in taking a home pregnancy test after you have missed your period.