One of the most classic signs of pregnancy is a missed period, but this may not happen with women who take birth control pills, according to the Mayo Clinic. Even if you stopped taking birth control pills in hopes of conceiving your own bundle of joy, you may experience an absence of periods for some months after stopping such oral contraceptives. Learning more about how to determine if you are pregnant whether you currently take oral contraceptives or recently stopped taking birth control pills will help ensure you get proper medical care. Likely, you’ll need to take a pregnancy test, as many potential birth control side effects and pregnancy symptoms coincide with each other, according to the Feminist Women’s Health Center.
Vaginal spotting that might resemble a light menstrual flow usually happens in the first days after the fetus implants itself into your body, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, women on birth control pills may mistaken the spotting for the potential “breakthrough bleeding” side effect that oral contraceptives carry. Considering that technically the birth control pill is only about 92 to 99.7 percent effective, you could possibly be pregnant even if you faithfully take your oral contraceptives as prescribed, according to the Feminist Women’s Health Center.
Keep an eye out for unexpected nausea, especially if you’ve been taking birth control pills for a while. While nausea is a potential birth control pill side effect, it also is one of the first signs of pregnancy in women, according to the American Pregnancy Association. “Morning sickness” is common, especially during the first trimester of pregnancy, and may also cause you to experience unusual food cravings or food aversions.
If you are pregnant, your breasts will likely grow and change to prepare for the birthing process and breastfeeding, according to the American Pregnancy Association. While some breast tenderness is a potential side effect of birth control pills, unusually swollen and tender breasts usually indicate pregnancy. Your breasts may also start leaking a thick yellowish fluid; this is medically labeled as colostrum. Also, you might notice the presence of “bumps” on your breasts; these are usually associated with pregnancy and happen when the small glands of the areolas rise due to pregnancy hormonal changes. Your nipples may also change in color, and you might notice the presence of darkened veins around your breast tissue.
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