If you’ve been trying to conceive, and are looking forward to seeing a sign that you’re pregnant, you’ll be more receptive to certain signs that your body is giving you. But, is it common for pregnancy symptoms to show up early?
The best way of knowing if you’re pregnant is to take a home test after a missed period. However, some women have been known to experience symptoms as early as four days after ovulation. Let’s take an in-depth look into whether this can be taken as a clear sign of pregnancy.
What Is 4 DPO?
4 DPO, or four days post ovulation, is an early stage in pregnancy. If the egg released during ovulation is fertilized, it transforms into a zygote, and enters the uterus through your Fallopian tube.
The zygote will split into 16 different cells, known as totipotent cells, within 4 days of fertilization. Totipotent cells can develop into any part of the human body. At this stage, the zygote is called a morula, which further divides to form a blastocyst. This is the very first stage of an embryo. You’re considered to be pregnant when this embryo gets implanted in the lining of your uterus.
At 4 DPO, the egg has just been fertilized, and could be at the morula or early blastocyst stage. Your body may start releasing hormones such as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and progesterone to maintain a healthy pregnancy. However, in most pregnancies, the hCG hormone is not released until after implantation.
Occurrence of 4 DPO
The occurrence of symptoms at 4 DPO is unlikely for most women. However, if you’ve been actively trying to conceive, you may be more sensitive towards changes in your body, some of which may look like very early pregnancy symptoms.
If you don’t see any changes at 4 DPO, you don’t have to worry, because there are still a few more days until you will technically be pregnant. Occurrence of concrete pregnancy symptoms is very rare at 4 DPO, and only a handful of women have even reported experiencing mild symptoms.
Pregnancy Symptoms You May Notice at 4 DPO
While it’s not very common, some women can notice pregnancy symptoms as early as at 4 DPO. These may be very mild, and are not a definite indicator of pregnancy. Most of these symptoms are common signs of pregnancy as well as the menstrual cycle, making their cause hard to distinguish.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms at 4 DPO, it is recommended to wait until your first missed period before diagnosing them.
Abdominal cramping in the early days of pregnancy has been noticed by some women. But since period cramps and 4 DPO cramps aren’t distinguishable, this can be a little confusing, and not entirely reliable. You may even experience cramping during ovulation. So, although you can’t entirely write it off, it is not very likely that these cramps are a result of pregnancy.
A common cause of spotting during the early stage of pregnancy is implantation bleeding. However, implantation at 4 DPO is not common, since it usually occurs 6 to 12 days after fertilization. Although the egg may have reached your uterus, it will take a few days to implant. This is when your body secretes hormones to prepare the uterine lining for successful implantation.
Any spotting at 4 DPO may not be a pregnancy symptom. If you do have spotting at this time, it’s recommended that you visit your doctor to rule out any other causes. If you have conceived and are at 4 DPO, you may see implantation bleeding in the following days. Don’t worry if you don’t, as not all women experience this symptom, and some may even tend to miss it, as it’s barely noticeable.
Nausea or morning sickness is a well-known symptom of pregnancy. The chances of you experiencing nausea before you miss your period are very slim, with only 10 per cent of the women experiencing it. Nausea is often a symptom of the rise in hormone levels in your body, which will take a little longer to manifest.
If you’re at 4 DPO and have no signs of nausea, you’re good. Since nausea comes a little later, you have a few nausea-free days to look forward to!
4. Tender Breasts
Sensitive or tender breasts are also a sign of pregnancy as well as menstruation. While you can’t discount it as being a pregnancy symptom induced by a rise in pregnancy hormones, it can just as well be due to hormonal changes during your menstrual period.
Feeling tired throughout the day may appear to be an early symptom of pregnancy. This is common for women, especially in their first trimester. But, it isn’t a concrete sign of pregnancy.
6. Bloating and Food Cravings
Like most other symptoms, these are also common to pregnancy and your period cycle, but not all women experience it.
There are other symptoms like headaches, frequent urination, mood swings, food aversion, constipation, and nasal congestion that you may experience. Symptoms like these are usually experienced during the first trimester of pregnancy, and aren’t very common in the very early stages for most women.
Can a BFP Test Be Done at 4 DPO?
It’s tempting to reach for a home pregnancy test the minute you notice even the mildest symptom. However, it’s important to know how these tests work, in order to understand why doing this might not render the best results.
Pregnancy tests detect the levels of human chorionic gonadotropin, or the hCG, hormone in your body. The hormone level needs to be high enough for the test to detect, to receive a big fat positive (BFP) test result. hCG is released by your placenta only after the egg is implanted, which happens at about 6 to 10 DPO. Hence, you’re unlikely to see a positive on that home pregnancy test at 4 DPO.
You may even see a negative result, even if you have conceived. So, it is best to wait until after you’ve missed your period to get a test. At around 13 to 15 DPO, you should have high enough hCG levels to have a positive test if you’re pregnant.
If you test negative at this point, but you have a good feeling that you’re pregnant, you should see a doctor to confirm the same. False negatives can happen when you take a home test. It could be because you took the test too early, or your body needs more time to release hCG. Getting a blood test from a doctor can clarify this for you.
4 DPO is a very early stage of your pregnancy. While the egg may be fertilized and you may experience certain mild symptoms, it is best to wait until you miss your period to confirm the pregnancy. Only a few women may even experience these symptoms, so you may want to wait for a few days for confirmation.