Early Signs of Pregnancy
Could you be pregnant? There are some signs and symptoms that can appear early on in pregnancy, even before you’ve missed a menstrual period. As many as 70% of women have pregnancy symptoms by the time they are six weeks along. While a positive pregnancy test is the only way to confirm your pregnancy, the symptoms below can give you a better idea as to whether or not you might be expecting.
Have you been feeling exhausted lately? Perhaps you don’t normally take naps, but suddenly find yourself nodding off during the day. When you conceive, your levels of progesterone spike, which can cause fatigue. Your body is also hard at work making the placenta, which supplies blood and nutrients to the growing fetus. It takes a lot of energy to create a person, even if your brain isn’t yet aware that you’re pregnant!
The increase in hormones like progesterone and estrogen can cause your breasts to feel tender. They may be more sensitive than usual, and the areolae (the area around your nipples) can become larger or darker in color. Some women experience these symptoms on a regular basis prior to menstruation; if your breasts commonly feel heavier or fuller just before you get your period, you may want to disregard this as a potential symptom.
Changes in Eating Habits
Are you suddenly ravenous? Perhaps that once heavenly aroma of coffee suddenly has you wrinkling your nose. Like most early pregnancy symptoms, doctors believe that food aversions or changes in appetite are related to the hormones your body is releasing in response to the pregnancy. A heightened sense of smell is also a symptom of pregnancy, and this intensified awareness of food scents may make certain things seem delicious…or nauseating.
You’re tired, sore, and hungry…it only makes sense that you’re feeling pretty irritable at times. With the combination of crazy hormones and the stress of not knowing if you’re actually pregnant, it’s no wonder you’ve been a bit more cranky than usual. People often feel conflicted about becoming a parent – whether you’re desperately hoping for a child, or you’re feeling totally unprepared and overwhelmed at the thought of a pregnancy, it’s certainly an emotional few weeks.
The only sure way to know if you are pregnant is through a pregnancy test. These tests check your levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). Over-the-counter urine tests have varying levels of accuracy, and you’ll want to wait until after the expected date of your period for best results. If you simply can’t wait that long, a blood test can give more definitive results as early as six to eight days after ovulation, and is much more accurate than a urine test.
At FastMed Urgent Care, we know how difficult it is to be unsure about whether or not you are pregnant. We can give you peace of mind by performing a pregnancy test so you will know if you’re expecting or not. Our doctors and nurses are familiar with all of the local resources, so we can offer you guidance and direct you toward services and professionals who can help you understand and cope with the implications of your pregnancy test results. Come see us any time – we’re open every single day of the year.