Last Updated on
“Pregnancy is the journey where each day the lady falls in love with a human she hasn’t met yet”.
Conceiving a baby may be a planned decision taken by a couple in many scenarios. For the rest, it may come in as a surprise. It is important that one is able to identify the signs of pregnancy.
Every woman is different and unique, and so are the signs and symptoms she experiences. Every pregnant lady need not experience every sign/symptom. Also, the intensity of the experience varies from person to person. Here are the most common signs and symptoms experienced during pregnancy with their reasons.
1. Missed Periods- The most common sign of pregnancy is missed periods.
Every month the uterus prepares itself to hold a baby. But when the ovum (egg) does not fertilize with sperm, the uterus sheds off the thick layer it has formed to nourish the baby, This is what we call as the menstrual cycle. However, when a woman gets pregnant, the fertilised zygote (fertilised egg and sperm) attaches itself to the uterus. The baby needs to grow and be nourished in the uterus and this time the uterus does not shed itself and the woman misses her periods.
2. Fatigue/Weakness- Pregnancy is a play of hormones. Multiple factors contribute to fatigue/weakness.
There is a rise in hormone progesterone in the body. It helps the body produce more blood to ensure nutrients to the growing baby. Hence, blood pressure and blood sugar are usually low. This can lead to feeling tired all the time. Another reason is emotional disturbance experienced by the mother on motherhood, childbirth, expenses etc.
3. Light spotting- Some women experience spotting of blood, just a few drops not enough to wet the panty. It is not same as menstrual blood flow which is usually heavy. It can seem to be light traces of pink, red or even brown.
This spotting is seen between 6-10 days after the zygote attaches to the uterus, also called implantation spotting.
4. Cramping- It almost feels like the menstrual period is about to start.
This too is the sign of zygote being attached to the uterus, called as implantation cramping.
5. Nausea and vomiting- Many women feel nauseated. This can be accompanied with or without vomiting.
The main reason behind this sign is the increase of human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG), oestrogen and cortisol. HCG usually peak in the blood during morning hours, hence most women complain of morning sickness.
6. Food aversions- Dislike to certain food and also craving for the others is usually seen during early pregnancy. It often gets sorted by mid-pregnancy, while for others it continues throughout the pregnancy period.
The same mentioned hormones which cause nausea are responsible for aversions and cravings.
7. Breast tenderness- Breasts are an important part of your body to nurse the new life.
It grows rapidly, due to milk-producing glands and gets bigger in size. The hormone floods in your body help achieve this target. Also, there is an increase in blood supply to the breast, which often makes it tender and may cause itching and even skin irritation.
8. Dizziness and fainting- Some women experience it as soon as they are pregnant.
Thanks to the hormones which reduce blood pressure, blood sugar and dilate the blood vessels. This sudden drop in major vitals causes dizziness and fainting.
9. Elevated body temperature- The body temperature of a pregnant woman is always elevated. They may complain of feeling hot all the time and prefer sitting directly under the fan or AC at all time. They may also put their heads in the refrigerator for quick relief.
The progesterone hormone once again is its culprit.
10. Heartburns- Experiences of sudden heartburns on eating even the slightest spice may occur during early pregnancy and especially during late pregnancy.
This is due to the relaxation of the muscles of the digestive system. The valves which stop the stomach acids from pushing up to the oesophagus are relaxed and this causes acid reflux and heartburn.
11. Constipation- A constant complaint by almost all women.
Relaxation of colonic muscles makes discarding the waste in the body much slower.
12. Acidity- An average individual produces gas, but this increases unusually for pregnant women.
One reason is the growing fetus which is pressing against the intestines and the other is the relaxation of the intestine muscles which are not pushing the waste out. This causes bloating, uncomfortable burping and farts at unexpected places or situations like during a meeting or a gathering.
13. Aches and pains- Common aches are backache and pain around the hip bones.
Release of hormones causes ligaments and joints in the pelvis to soften and loosen. This softening and loosening helps accommodate the expanding uterus. It can affect your back causing back pain. Round ligament pain is the ache experienced around the hips. It makes movement on the bed difficult and painful. This is caused as the hip bones expand to accommodate the growing uterus.
14. Nasal congestion and bleeds- Slight cold, nose bleeds and gum bleeds can happen.
The increasing hormones cause the mucous membrane of the nose to swell up and dry out in many women, and sometimes there can be nose bleeds. Many also report of gum bleeding. This will eventually pass off with some additional multivitamins your doctor prescribes.
There are some of the most common signs of pregnancy to look out for. If you experience many of them, you can get checked. Also, prepare for these if you are pregnant!
Disclaimer: The views, opinions and positions (including content in any form) expressed within this post are those of the author alone. The accuracy, completeness and validity of any statements made within this article are not guaranteed. We accept no liability for any errors, omissions or representations. The responsibility for intellectual property rights of this content rests with the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with him/her.