If you miss a period, that’s a hallmark sign that a baby is on the way. However, you may start to experience additional signs of early pregnancy shortly after your conceive, sometimes within a mere three weeks, according to the Mayo Clinic. Every woman’s body is different, so no two pregnancies will be exactly the same.
Among the various symptoms of early pregnancy, a sudden drop in physical energy is high on the list, reports the Mayo Clinic. Increased levels of the progesterone hormone, combined with low blood pressure and low blood sugar, can zap your physical stamina–and can even put you out like a light. The Yale-New Haven Hospital suggests making it easier on yourself. Cancel a trip to the grocery store. Ask your spouse, friends and family for help. Nap whenever you can, and eat a healthy diet.
Nausea and/or vomiting is also a heavy hitter during your first trimester, says the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). Again, hormones are to blame. “Morning sickness” is a misnomer, as it can occur any time of day or night. There’s no real way to prevent it, either. The ACOG, however, suggests lots of rest, eating five or six small meals rather than three big ones and avoiding spicy dishes and fatty foods. If a certain smell trips your gag reflex, avoid it. To curb morning sickness, try nibbling on crackers when you wake up, the ACOG suggests.
High Highs and Low Lows
One day you’re filled with joy and anticipation; the next day, worry and fear descend. This is perfectly normal, assures the Yale-New Haven Hospital. Once your hormones kick in, this causes changes in your body, energy level and libido–as well as your emotions. The best way to combat mood swings is to get plenty of rest, so they won’t be compounded by fatigue. The good news is that you are likely to feel less overwhelmed as you progress into your second semester of pregnancy.
It’s Not in Your Head
Hormone changes also cause increased blood circulation–as well as your propensity to get frequent but mild headaches, according to the Mayo Clinic. Low blood pressure can make you feel dizzy when you first stand up, cautions the Yale-New Haven Hospital. If you’re just getting out of bed, sit up for a few moments before rising. Also, avoid warm or crowded places.
Constipation and Urination
Pesky progesterone strikes again, this time in your intestines. Mayo Clinic doctors explain that increased hormones make the food you eat go through your digestive tract more slowly, which can cause constipation. Also, around week 6 of your pregnancy, your kidneys go on double duty to remove waste from your body. You may find yourself dashing off to the bathroom more than usual.
A Tender Tip-Off
If you’re not sure you’re pregnant, your breasts may give you a few clues. Tender, sore breasts are a common sign of pregnancy and can occur as early as two weeks after you conceive, says the Mayo Clinic. Your breasts may also look distinctly larger, fuller and feel heavier. The Yale-New Haven hospital suggests purchasing a nursing bra to give you better support and comfort. As your pregnancy progresses, you can even choose to wear it at night.
Other Signs of Early Pregnancy
Sometimes, but not always, you may have spotting or vaginal bleeding early in your pregnancy, reports the Mayo Clinic. This is called “implantation bleeding,” and it occurs when a fertilized egg adheres to the uterine wall roughly 10 to 14 days after conception. You may also notice abdominal pain similar to menstrual cramps early in your pregnancy. To be on the safe side, the clinic advises that you contact your obstetrician if you notice bleeding or spotting.