By keeping an eye out for the earliest signs of pregnancy, you can learn to distinguish between false alarms and when it is really time to visit the doctor or purchase a pregnancy test. The most common and reliable sign of a positive pregnancy is the missed period, but the earliest signs of pregnancy may be noticeable in some women before a missed period occurs. There are a few common earliest signs that are experienced by a wide range of women as soon as a couple of weeks after conception. These include:
- Tenderness or swelling of the breasts and nipples
- Mood swings
Many of these earliest signs are physical symptoms that occur in response to changes in hormone levels such as estrogen and progesterone. Pregnancy symptoms resulting from hormone changes are most noticeable during the earliest stages of pregnancy since this is when the increased production of hormones first occurs. For example, hormones that are increased in your body during the early pregnancy stages can cause you to have sudden mood swings. Also, headaches may become more frequent as a result of increased blood circulation as hormone levels rise.
Some or the other earliest signs of pregnancy that are more likely to occur after a missed period include:
- Food cravings or food aversions
- Nausea or vomiting
- Increased urination
- Changes in libido
One of the earliest signs of pregnancy are different responses to food than you is normal for you. Cravings or aversions for certain types of food are also caused by changes in hormone levels. Does the smell of a food suddenly cause you to feel sick to your stomach? This is one of the earliest signs of pregnancy reported by the experts. Some of the most common foods and drinks avoided by pregnant women include meat and dairy products, coffee, and spicy food. Food cravings are also common as your tastes for certain foods are slightly modified due to increased hormone levels.
Another of the earliest signs of pregnancy for some women is frequent urination. This is caused by the enlarged uterus that can put pressure upon the bladder. Some women may experience constipation as one of the earliest signs of pregnancy as the increased presence of the hormone progesterone causes digestion to slow down.
Keep in mind that there are many alternative explanations for some of these earliest signs of pregnancy. The signs may be a clue that you are pregnant, or they may also have another cause and do not serve as proof of a pregnancy. If you feel you may be pregnant, be sure to take an at-home pregnancy test and make an appointment with a doctor.