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Pregnancy or Period
I am sure I am not alone. There have been times when I wasn’t sure if I was pregnant or if it was just my .period.
Here are some very early symptoms of pregnancy that can show up one week before your missed period. If you’ve already experienced a few, it may be time to head to the drugstore to pick up a pregnancy test or schedule an appointment with your OB-GYN.
Your breasts may be extra tender as early as one or two weeks after conception.
Cramping and Backaches
Many women mistake these early signs of pregnancy for PMS symptoms, but they’re actually caused by hormonal changes and the growth of the uterus. The cramping is triggered by the implantation of the fertilized egg attached to the uterine wall.
When fertilized egg implants into the plush lining of the uterus about 6 to 12 days after conception, light vaginal spotting may occur. This bleeding is typically a light pink or rusty brown color.
During the first few weeks, your body is working overtime to support the pregnancy, and fatigue is a normal response. The extra progesterone produced after conception causes your basal body temperature to rise, which in turn contributes to a lack of energy.
Are your nipples looking darker these days? Pregnancy hormones also affect the activity of melanocytes or cells in the nipples responsible for their color.
While full-blown morning sickness doesn’t normally strike till a few weeks into pregnancy, some women may experience more subtle motion sickness in early pregnancy.
Are your skinny jeans feeling tight? Elevated levels of progesterone slow down your digestive tract and can cause your tummy to be more bloated than normal.
Extra blood flow to the kidneys causes them to produce more urine, resulting in frequent urination.
In early pregnancy, you will most likely be craving bagels and bread vs pickles and ice cream. Your overtired body may demand extra carbs now because they are easier to metabolize and the carbs keep your energy levels up. (Learn more about Food Cravings.)
Increases blood volume may trigger frequent but mild tension headaches in the first few weeks of pregnancy.
The same hormones responsible for bloating are also the cultrate behind causing you to be constipated. Your digestive tract is slowing down in early pregnancy and will continue to ramp up during pregnancy.
Are you finding yourself crying over that Duracell commercial, where the army guy sends his daughter a bear? Do you feel irritated or ragged by the Amazon delivery guy knocking on your door? As levels of hCG hormones increase, you’re feeling massive amounts of fatigue, which makes you more prone to moodiness.
Basal Body Temperature
Basal Body Temperature (BBT) is your oral temperature. You can measure this first thing in the morning. This can indicate when you are ovulating. Your temperature rises about half a degree when an egg is released and remains elevated until you get your period. If you’re charting BBT and notice it hasn’t decreased in more than two weeks, it may mean you’ve got a baby on the way.
Bloody noses, congestion, and postnasal drip are common in pregnancy. Increasing blood volume puts more pressure on delicate vessels like the ones in your nose, but hormones are to blame too. Estrogen, in particular, can make blood vessels dilate, which contributes to the swelling of the mucous membranes in your nose. Luckily, much of the discomfort can be relieved by using a simple saline spray, and it should resolve soon after delivery
Want To Know More??
You can read more about the early signs of pregnancy here.
So, is it time to go to the drugstore and get a pregnancy test??
Note FromYour Doula
Many of these symptoms are similar to what some might experience during their menstrual cycle. I always suggest tracking your cycles so you know if you are late or if something just seems different. Whether you are pregnant or it is your period make sure you take note of all your symptoms.
If you find out that you are expecting… First off, Congratulations!!! Look into hiring a doula! It is never too early to get this done.