Am I pregnant? Could I be?
If you’ve just missed your period, chances are you are definitely wondering whether or not you could have a bun cooking in the oven. Maybe you’re ready to be a mom. Maybe you’re not. But if you think you might be preggers, you’ve got to find out.
If you’re a smoker or a regular drinker, pregnancy will completely change your lifestyle. Being pregnant means no cigarettes, absolutely no alcohol. It also means that you’ll have to be more careful about what you eat. (Like if you love soft cheese, like blue cheese, you’re going to have to avoid it throughout your entire 40 weeks of pregnancy.) And then, there are the prenatal vitamins that you have to take to ensure the health of your developing baby. (Folic acid is crucial, and you should be taking an extra folic acid supplement if you think there’s any chance – even a remote chance – that you could be a mom-to-be.
Here we go . . . the top 5 signs that you might be pregnant.
Top 5 Signs of Pregnancy
If you don’t keep track of your menstrual cycle and you have no clue when to expect your period, you may not know you’re pregnant for a few weeks. Keep an eye out for these common pregnancy symptoms. If you experience any of them, rush to your nearest pharmacy and pick up a home pregnancy test!
1. Missed Period – # 1 Sign of Pregnancy
Aunt Flow didn’t come visit you this month? If you’re usually regular (you have a period every month) and your period doesn’t arrive on time, you should definitely go take a pregnancy test. A missed period is often a big sign – and sometimes the only sign – that you might have a baby coming.
2. Morning Sickness – Big Sign You May Be Pregnant
Are you feeling nauseous? Are you throwing up every morning? Nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, a.k.a. morning sickness, typically hits about a month, or four weeks, after conception (egg and sperm meet and a new life begins). This means, around 8 weeks pregnant, it will hit. (Doctors count the ‘start’ of pregnancy as the first day of your last period. We’ll explore why in another post.)
Up to 80 percent of all pregnant women experience some degree of morning sickness. A luckily 20 percent never experience it at all. (Lucky duckies!) Fortunately, morning sickness is almost exclusively a first trimester pregnancy symptom. Half of all mamas-to-be get relief from their nausea by the beginning of their second trimester (around 14 weeks pregnant). For all other pregnant women, their queasiness eases up by the middle of their second trimester.
3. Tender and Swollen Breasts
This pregnancy symptom can trip up some women. They may just assume that they’re PMSing when, in fact, they’re preggers. Swollen and tender (painful to the touch) breasts are an early pregnancy symptom, caused by the elevated levels of hormones in your body. This sign of pregnancy may feel like an exaggerated version of how your boobs feel right before you get your period.
Your breast discomfort should decrease after your first trimester. (Hormones typically level off in the second trimester, giving you relief from many of your uncomfy pregnancy symptoms.) And while your breast may not feel as tender – though, they might. Some women have tender boobs throughout 40 weeks of pregnancy – they will definitely grow.
Did you know that some women grow a full cup size in their first trimester? That’s something to look forward to, especially if you have small breasts.
Ugh, exhaustion and fatigue are another common sign of pregnancy. During the first 13 weeks of pregnancy, don’t be alarmed if you feel utterly exhausted. No one knows exactly what causes pregnancy fatigue, but it may be related to higher levels of hormones, especially the hormone progesterone.
Don’t worry – you won’t feel exhausted forever. Fatigue levels off during the second trimester. In fact, during the middle part of pregnancy, you will have a boost of energy and start to feel like your old self again. Enjoy the second trimester to the fullest, because fatigue will rear its ugly head back in the final weeks of your pregnancy.
5. Frequent Urination – The Need to Pee
If you think you have to pee a lot now, you’ll be amazed at how many bathroom runs you’ll have during pregnancy. During pregnancy, the amount of blood and fluids in your body doubles, which means that you have extra fluid going through your kidneys and into your bladder. So get ready for those pee runs. You’ll be going to the bathroom a lot. And I mean, a lot!
Your need to pee may start as early as 6 weeks pregnant, and it will just get worse the longer you’re pregnant. As your uterus grows, it will add more pressure to your bladder and make you feel like you’ve gotta pee, even though in reality your bladder is nearly empty.
Are You Pregnant?
For some women, they don’t have classic early pregnancy signs. Their bodies feel “off” or their ability to eat certain foods is altered. For example, in my first pregnancy, in my early weeks of pregnancy (before my positive home pregnancy test), my body began to reject coffee. It made me way super jittery and nauseous. It was very strange because before my pregnancy, I had been drinking two or three cups of coffee easily.
If you think you might be pregnant, take a home pregnancy test, or contact your doctor and ask for a blood pregnancy test.