If you’re like me, the second you think you may be pregnant you started searching for every possible early pregnancy sign. To help you out, here is a full list of potential pregnancy symptoms that you could experience in the very early stages of pregnancy. While many people associate pregnancy with missed periods and morning sickness, there are actually a variety of very early signs that can occur even before a woman realizes she’s missed her period.
- Implantation Bleeding and Spotting
Implantation bleeding is one of the earliest signs of pregnancy, occurring around 10-14 days after conception. It takes place when the fertilized egg attaches itself to the lining of the uterus, causing a small amount of spotting or light bleeding. While it’s often mistaken for a very light period, implantation bleeding is usually shorter in duration and lighter in flow than a typical menstrual period. For me, implantation bleeding was a light pink spotting that I found on my toilet paper, and it lasted just one or two days. It arrived around the day I would have started my period.
- Breast Changes
Hormonal shifts during early pregnancy can lead to changes in the breasts. Many women experience soreness, tenderness, or swelling in the breasts within a few weeks of conception. The areolas might also darken and become more prominent. These changes occur due to the increased blood flow and hormonal changes in preparation for breastfeeding.
- Fatigue and Exhaustion
Feeling unusually tired or fatigued is a common early sign of pregnancy. The surge in progesterone levels can cause a feeling of sleepiness and drain energy levels. Many women report feeling the need to take naps or go to bed much earlier than usual, even before they miss their period.
- Frequent Urination
Around six to eight weeks into pregnancy, the body increases blood volume, leading to more fluid being processed by the kidneys and ending up in the bladder. This can result in more frequent trips to the restroom, even during the night. Frequent urination can be one of the early signs of pregnancy that’s often overlooked or attributed to other factors.
- Changes in Food Aversions and Cravings
Hormonal changes can lead to shifts in a woman’s sense of taste and smell, causing certain foods to suddenly become unappetizing or triggering intense cravings. These changes can manifest very early in pregnancy, sometimes even before a missed period. The sudden aversion to foods you once loved or the irresistible urge to have specific foods can hint at the hormonal transformations occurring in your body.
- Mood Swings and Emotional Changes
The roller-coaster of emotions experienced during pregnancy doesn’t always wait for the positive pregnancy test. Hormones, particularly rising levels of estrogen and progesterone, can affect neurotransmitters in the brain and lead to mood swings, heightened emotions, and even tearfulness. These emotional changes can be some of the subtlest yet earliest signs of pregnancy.
- Increased Basal Body Temperature
For those actively tracking their menstrual cycles, a sustained increase in basal body temperature (BBT) can be an early indicator of pregnancy. After ovulation, the body’s basal temperature rises slightly and remains elevated if pregnancy occurs.
- Heightened Sense of Smell
Pregnancy hormones can lead to a heightened sense of smell, causing certain odors to become more intense and sometimes even unpleasant. Everyday scents that were once tolerable might suddenly become overwhelming, and this change can happen quite early in pregnancy.
- Changes in Cervical Mucus
Changes in cervical mucus consistency and color can offer insight into early pregnancy. After conception, cervical mucus might become thicker, stickier, and more abundant, creating a mucus plug to protect the developing embryo from potential infections.
- Bloating and Constipation
Progesterone, a hormone that increases significantly in early pregnancy, can cause the digestive system to slow down. This can lead to feelings of bloating, gas, and even constipation. These gastrointestinal changes, while not exclusive to pregnancy, can serve as early indicators when coupled with other symptoms.
This is an odd one but it’s one that I experienced a couple of days before my pissed period in both of my pregnancies. During pregnancy, hormones can cause the mucous membranes in your nose to swell which can cause some nasal congestion.
The journey of pregnancy begins with the tiniest of hints, often before the realization of a missed period. These very early signs can offer subtle clues that a new chapter is about to begin. While each woman’s experience is unique, being attuned to these signals can foster a deeper connection to the body and the incredible changes it undergoes during pregnancy. If you suspect you might be pregnant based on these early signs, and you are within a few days of your period, I would take a test! I was able to find out 6 days before my missed period using the 1st Response pregnancy test, and I recommend it.