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First symptoms of pregnancy

The pregnancy symptoms can appear several days or weeks after conception.

Before menstruation, the couple is anxiousto know if conception has occurred.
Fortunately, there are some methods and symptoms that allow you to understand if a woman is pregnant, even in the first few weeks.

The woman’s body already changes in the first days after fertilization to create adequate conditions for the growth of the embryo.
The hormones can cause anatomical and functional changes in the female body, including:

  1. Increased breast size,
  2. Vasodilatation (dilation of arteries and veins ),
  3. Increased body temperature,
  4. Relaxation of smooth (involuntary) muscles.

In early pregnancy the symptoms are very variable; some women have important symptoms, while others feel no difference.

Many people believe that it is not possible to conceive during breastfeeding , but this is false, especially when the woman does not breastfeed regularly.


Signs and Symptoms in the Early Days of Pregnancy

The positive outcome of pregnancy testing after menstrual delay is a safe indicator for pregnant women.

However, other bodily signs may appear before losing the menstrual cycle .

Abdominal swelling
Most women experience this symptom in the early stages of pregnancy.
The hormonal changes that occur in the body cause swelling in the abdomen .

High basal temperature
During the period when the egg is implanted in the uterine wall, there is an increase in basal body temperature (body temperature at rest, on awakening).

The basal temperature depends on progesterone:

  1. Prior to ovulation, progesterone is low and the temperature remains around 36.3 ° C. The value may vary, but generally does not exceed 36.6 ° C,
  2. If the level of this hormone in the blood is high, the temperature will rise to 36.8 / 37 ° C.

Generally, this temperature rise occurs immediately after ovulation and the temperature does not fall until 6-12 days after ovulation.
At conception, the basal temperature remains elevated for at least 15 days after ovulation and this is a reliable signal that fertilization has occurred.
However, there may be other factors that can change the temperature, even a coldor an infection .

Darker breasts and darker areolas
The first sign of pregnancy is the swollen sinus  that causes  pain . Breast pain is similar to what a woman feels before the onset of the menstrual cycle; during pregnancy is more evident.
Hormonal changes can increase the flow of blood in the sinuses, making them sensitive.

Effects of hormones on the breast

  • The progesterone is the hormone responsible for breast changes early in pregnancy.
    This hormone promotes the growth of the sinus so that the woman has enough milk to nourish the baby.
  • The  estrogen and prolactin cause proliferation and dilation of the ducts that bring milk to the areola.
    Estrogens also increase the size of the areola that may become darker during pregnancy progression.

This can be observed within 1-2 weeks after conception.


Fatigue or drowsiness
Increased progesterone hormone causes excessive fatigue . Changing hormone levels in pregnant women can cause:

This is the most common symptom and occurs:

  • In the first quarter, also at the beginning,
  • In the third quarter.

In early pregnancy, the body must work hard to create the placenta.
Hormonal changes cause:

  • Low pressure because they cause vasodilation in the superficial blood vessels. The consequence is less resistance to blood flow, and therefore the heart pumps blood with less force.
  • Decreased blood glucose (blood sugar),
  • Nausea, vomiting, and decreased appetite .

The iron needs increase and so the woman can suffer from anemia .
In addition, some women have insomnia problems, which causes nervousness and fatigue .


Bleeding Implant bleeding occurs when the fertilized egg digs through the vascular wall of the uterus. The stain that is formed is very light with pink, red or reddish-brown coloration.
Can be seen for about a day or two.

It is necessary to talk with the doctor to rule out the possibility of ectopic pregnancy if the discharge :

The bleeding of implantation can occur in 6 to 12 days after conception.


Abdominal Pain and Cramps
The sudden rise in hormone levels in the body in early pregnancy can cause:

  • Headache can be caused by anxiety , fatigue , dehydration , insomnia and nausea .
  • Back pain in the early stages is caused by the increase in the hormone relaxin. This hormone increases the flexibility of the ligaments. The consequence is a greater range of motion and less vertebral stability. In this condition, the bones of the joint slide one over the other abnormally, so that some articular elements may undergo stretching. This causes joint inflammation and pain.

The cramps may also occur because of changes that occur in the womb.

After conception, some women experience emotional symptoms such as:

  • Mood swings,
  • Crises of crying,
  • Heat waves.


Symptoms of Pregnancy in the First Weeks

Nausea and vomiting
Increased levels of the hormone in the body causes nausea .
It can occur at any time of the day or night.
However, nausea is not always accompanied by vomiting .

Excess salivation associated with nausea may occur .
A woman can also develop a greater  sense of smell that causes certain nausea:

  • Foods,
  • Odors.

This sign may appear in 2-8 weeks after conception.
Some women have heartburn . If nausea is severe and occurs along with vomiting, it is necessary to avoid dehydration .

Researchers do not know the exact cause of nausea during pregnancy, but agree that it depends on the hormones.
In particular, some studies show a correlation between peak hCG and gestational nausea, between the twelfth and the fourteenth weeks.
In addition, this symptom is more intense in some diseases or situations characterized by an increase in hCG levels, such as molar and twin pregnancies.

Fontes: Goodwin T. Nausea and vomiting of pregnancy; an obstretric syndrome. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2002;186:S184–S189. [PubMed]

Some scientific studies have evaluated the role of prostaglandin E2 in causing nausea during pregnancy because it acts on the smooth muscles of the stomach .
A study by North et al. found higher prostaglandin E 2 levels at times when nausea and vomiting were worse compared to asymptomatic periods in 18 pregnant women.

Fontes: North RA, Whitehead R, Larkins RG. Stimulation by human chorionic gonadotropin of prostaglandin synthesis by early human placental tissue. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1991;73:60–70. [PubMed]

According to the hygienists , women should not eat when they feel nauseous in the first 3 months of pregnancy; it is better to wait for the appetite to return.
A weight loss in early pregnancy is quite common.


Constipation or diarrhea
The bowel becomes more relaxed due to hormonal changes, the consequence is constipation .
Some women may develop the opposite symptom, ie diarrhea .

The causes are:

  • The increase in progesterone relaxes the smooth (involuntary) muscles throughout the body, including the muscles of intestinal peristalsis, that is, those that move the food into the intestine. This means that food flows more slowly.
  • The uterus becomes larger and heavier by the presence of the baby and presses the intestine.
  • The iron supplements can promote constipation.

It is vital to make a lot of movement and eat foods rich in fiber (fruits, raw vegetables, potatoes, nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, legumes, etc.).

Frequent urination
Changes caused by human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (hCG) cause frequent urination .
Hormones relax the muscles of the bladder and this limits the ability to hold the urine.
Another reason why a woman often urinates during pregnancy is the growth of the uterus that presses the bladder (especially in the third trimester).
This causes the bladder to fill faster and makes it more frequent to go to the bathroom.
This symptom is more common:

  • In the first 3 months,
  • In the third quarter.

Food Desires / Food Aversions
Most women want certain foodstuffs before menstruation and in the next stages of pregnancy.
However, some women may feel cravings even during the early stages, confusing them with a symptom of premenstrual syndrome .
On the other hand, food cravings are observed during the early stages of pregnancy, especially for:

  • Dairy products,
  • Fish,
  • Fried food.

According to psychologists, desires signify only need of attention.


When do the symptoms of pregnancy begin?

In a week from the time of conception (about a week before menstruation) the first symptoms of pregnancy occur, but times are different for each woman.
Sometimes the symptoms come and go (for example, they happen on alternate days), even if the pregnancy is progressing well.
In addition, some women do not feel any symptoms, even when they are pregnant.
Normally, women wait for the absence of menstruation to confirm the results.
This symptom appears within 2 weeks after conception.

Beta hCG in the blood and urine
Although blood tests and urine tests are accurate enough to validate the results in the first days (one week), it is advisable to always wait at least 20 days to get reliable results.
There is a marked increase  in the level of human chorionic gonadotrophin (beta-HCG), which reaches the concentration of 25 mlU / ml during the first and second weeks.
The presence of this hormone in the blood and urine confirms the pregnancy.
In addition, the physical changes in the woman’s body are caused by the secretion of large amounts of beta-HCG and progesterone during pregnancy.


First symptoms of pregnancy

The first sign of pregnancy is amenorrhea .
Symptoms similar to premenstrual syndrome may also occur, except for nausea and vomiting.
They represent some of the most obvious signs of pregnancy after a month.

Pain in the breast , swollen nipples, the darker areola are some physical changes that happen during the first and second weeks of pregnancy.
During the second and third weeks, the lining of the uterus expands and can cause colic   in the lower body, especially:

  • In the legs,
  • In the abdomen.

Symptoms of pregnancy while using the contraceptive pill

A woman can become pregnant even when taking the contraceptives .

This can happen for several reasons, for example:

  • If the instructions for use are not followed correctly (the woman forgets to take a pill),
  • In case of vomiting or diarrhea that prevent the correct absorption of the pill,
  • If the woman takes medicines that reduce the contraceptive effect, for example, an antifungal such as fluconazole or antibiotics like azithromycin.

When a woman becomes pregnant while taking the pill, the symptoms of pregnancy are different from a normal pregnancy.

The first signs are easy to recognize, especially if it is the woman’s first pregnancy.
However, it is important to note that the symptoms are different during each pregnancy.
In one pregnancy the woman may suffer from nausea, while in another this symptom does not occur.

Other symptoms include:

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