Having an ultrasound or pregnancy test is the surest way to confirm a pregnancy, but you may notice some early pregnancy symptoms before you have formal confirmation. The earliest pregnancy symptoms differ in how and when they present but if you suspect you are pregnant, you should consult with your general practitioner as soon as possible to ensure you get good antenatal care. Today we are going to answer the question of ‘when do pregnancy symptoms appear’.
The Most Common Early Pregnancy Symptoms
Some women may expect pregnancy symptoms very soon after conception, usually between three and six weeks later. These may include
- A missed menstrual period
- Sensitivity to smells
- Morning sickness.
Other signs and pregnancy symptoms may include
- Breast changes including sensitivity and breast enlargement
- Spotting or cramping
- More frequent urination
- Mood swings
- Changes in your body temperature.
When Do Pregnancy Symptoms Appear?
By week four after conception, implantation of the fertilised egg will occur in the lining of your uterus. In some women, this can cause implantation bleeding, and may occur around the time you were expecting your menstrual period. Implantation bleeding is usually lighter and coloured differently to menstrual fluid. It may be pink or brown in colour and accompanied by light cramps that are not usually as severe as menstrual cramps.
If you experience spotting or implantation bleeding you should consult with your general practitioner straight away. Stop drinking alcohol or smoking and discuss any medication or drugs you are taking with your GP. You can take a home pregnancy test or ask your GP for a blood test to confirm pregnancy.
Understanding Pregnancy Symptoms
Your body goes through a lot of changes when you are pregnant, and you may experience lots of pregnancy symptoms early on, including
A higher body temperature
Your base temperature may be elevated and you might find you get hot very quickly when you exercise. Make sure you drink lots of fluids.
Most women start to experience breast changes between four and six weeks of pregnancy. As your hormone levels change, your breasts will get larger and become more sensitive. Your areola or the area around your nipple may get darker.
Some women also experience a nipple discharge from around week 11.
You might need to get a bigger bra early on. Invest in something supportive and adjustable as you may experience more changes as your pregnancy progresses. If your nipples are sensitive, you can purchase breast pads to put in your bra to reduce friction.
Your moods may change unpredictably as your hormone levels adjust. Your moods may fluctuate between depression, euphoria, irritability and anxiety.
Morning sickness and nausea
Morning sickness doesn’t affect everyone but if it does, it is likely to present around weeks four to six, and peak around week nine. It’s common to experience severe morning sickness during your first trimester. For many women, this symptom improves as the pregnancy progresses, but for other women, it can be a persistent problem throughout pregnancy and may induce nausea and vomiting at any time of day.
If you are vomiting a lot, you must make sure you are taking enough fluids in. if morning sickness is very severe, you may need to discuss treatment options with your general practitioner to ensure you are adequately hydrated and keeping enough nutrients down.
The Importance Of Antenatal Care During Pregnancy
Whether you are pregnant with your first child or your fourth, getting professional care can keep you and your baby healthy. During antenatal visits, your GP will perform health checks and screen you for complications. As your pregnancy progresses, your healthcare provider will also monitor your baby’s growth and development.
Some of the routine tests you can expect include
- Checking your urine
- Taking your blood pressure
- Taking your weight
- Measuring your belly and the length of your baby
- Ultrasounds allow your healthcare practitioner to look in on the development of your baby but they may not be performed at every appointment
During antenatal visits, your healthcare provider will also give you psycho-emotional support and tips to manage your pregnancy symptoms. You can discuss any worrisome symptoms and start making plans for your delivery early on. If you have any anxiety or stress about the pregnancy your healthcare provider will help you to cope with it better.
As your baby gets bigger, you will visit your healthcare provider more frequently. On average you can expect to visit your healthcare provider
- Every four to six weeks until 28 weeks of pregnancy
- Every two to three weeks until 36 weeks of pregnancy
- Every two weeks until you deliver your baby
If your pregnancy is high risk or you experience complications, your caregiver will want you to come in more often. You can decide if you’d like to go alone, or if you would like someone to accompany you. There is merit to having your partner go along, but sometimes you may want to discuss private concerns on your own.
For help in understanding when do pregnancy symptoms appear, it’s best to consult with a professional. Please contact us for an appointment: (02) 9159 6903.
Early Pregnancy Symptoms
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14 Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms