Signs of pregnancy: the first few weeks

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Signs of pregnancy

The first sign of pregnancy is undoubtedly the absence of menstruation for two or three consecutive months, but before the delay some pregnant women try others symptoms that signal an ongoing pregnancy.

It must also be said that the absence of a cycle does not always coincide with an ongoing pregnancy: it can happen that the cycle is irregular for various reasons (amenorrhea can be caused for example by a significant weight loss or by stopping the pill after many years. of recruitment).

I'm pregnant?

I'm pregnant? Am I not pregnant? Here are the 15 signs of pregnancy Most common:

  1. menstruation delay
  2. small blood loss
  3. more sensitive breasts
  4. darker nipples
  5. sensitivity to odors
  6. very hungry
  7. hard and swollen belly
  8. tension in the lower abdomen
  9. urge to pee
  10. fatigue
  11. headache
  12. sudden changes in mood
  13. nausea
  14. constipation
  15. nasal congestion

It is not always easy to understand the signals that our body transmits: sometimes the desire to get pregnant is misleading and some symptoms can be misunderstood, also because they are often similar to those that can occur in the premenstrual period. To be sure, therefore, it is always better to take a pregnancy test. (Warning, stay away from online pregnancy tests! They are not scientifically reliable)

Find out what your fertile days are with our ovulation calendar

Some pregnancy symptoms, however, they can actually herald a pregnancy. Here's what they are the most common and when the first symptoms of pregnancy appear.

Read also: Cycle Delay

In this article

  • menstruation delay
  • small blood loss
  • more sensitive breasts
  • darker nipples
  • sensitivity to odors
  • very hungry
  • hard and swollen belly
  • tension in the lower abdomen
  • urge to pee
  • fatigue
  • headache
  • sudden changes in mood
  • nausea
  • constipation
  • nasal congestion

1 Delay of menstruation

The delay of menstruation it is the first and most reliable sign of a pregnancy in progress, at least for women who have a regular cycle. However, a delay does not necessarily mean that you are pregnant, because it can be caused by other causes, such as irregular cycles, taking medications, the presence of diseases. (Also read what to do if a girl misses her period)

Read also: Pregnancy or premenstrual symptoms?

2 Small blood loss

Small leaks - milder and less lasting than a period (premenstrual spotting) - can also occur in early pregnancy, but if they do occur, see your doctor as they could have various causes.

According to a study (First trimester bleeding. American Family Physician) 25% of pregnant women experienced light spotting or discharge.

When are these losses?

They usually occur between the sixth and twelfth day after conception, when implantation occurs.

Read also: Implantation losses or early menstruation

3 More sensitive breasts

Can't sleep on your stomach anymore? As a result of the hormonal storm that rages immediately after fertilization, the mammary glands grow, the breasts become larger and harder and the woman often feels painful tension, particularly one or two weeks after conception. (Read also: Breast in pregnancy)

4 Darker nipples

Due to the hormones of pregnancy and increased blood circulation, the nipples, areola and even the vulva can become darker. Even the small bumps on the areola, the so-called Montgomery tubercles, may appear more prominent and a deeper brown.

5 Sensitivity to odors

Many pregnant women are particularly sensitive to odors. During pregnancy, all the senses are refined. Researchers hypothesize an ingenious protection mechanism for mother and child: easily perishable foods such as meat and fish, but also substances that should be avoided (alcohol, coffee, cigarettes) are perceived by expectant mothers as unpleasant. This symptom is called hypersomy gravidarum.

6 Very hungry

  • pangs of hunger;
  • sudden aversion to food.

The transformation process that begins with pregnancy requires strength and the body consumes more energy. For this reason many expectant mothers have more appetite. However, women are attacked by hunger pangs even before menstruation or in periods of high stress. The advice is not to give in to hunger pangs and to follow a balanced diet (Read also: The first thousand days of the child)

It can also happen to have some asudden version for your favorite food. They can last throughout the pregnancy or be cyclical.

Read also: Pain in the ovaries

7 Hard and swollen belly

The increased production of progesterone in pregnancy limits bowel activity, causing constipation and a bloated feeling. However, problems of this type can also occur independently of a pregnancy.

8 Tension in the lower abdomen

Do you feel a tension in the lower abdomen different from the usual stomach ache that precedes the period? The uterus grows, preparing for pregnancy, the blood supply increases and new vessels appear and all this can indeed be accompanied by a typical tension in the lower abdomen. Some expectant mothers say they feel something is happening in their bellies. Sometimes, you may also feel a sensation of tear in the groin, because the hormonal changes in progress loosen the ligaments, so that the body can adapt to the belly as it prepares to grow. (Read also how your body changes in pregnancy)

9 Urge to pee

As the pregnancy progresses and the belly grows, the urge to urinate increases. But even in the early stages, many women have to go to the bathroom more often than normal.

10 Tiredness

The onset of pregnancy is accompanied by tiredness and sometimes even a sense of dizziness. The reason: in the first few months the blood pressure drops a little. Taking a shower alternating hot and cold water, a balanced diet and walks in the fresh air can improve the general physical condition. Dizziness and fatigue can also be due to anemia: just take blood tests.

Also, many women feel more tired in early pregnancy (as early as a week after conception!) Because their bodies are producing more progesterone.

11 Headache

It can sometimes happen that the sudden increase in hormone production can lead to headaches in the first few weeks of pregnancy.

12 Sudden changes in mood

Changes hormonal in place with pregnancy can cause sudden changes in mood. There may be as early as a few weeks after conception.

13 Nausea and malaise in the morning

This cliché is perfectly suited to a pregnancy. Especially if it is repeated for several consecutive days. The pregnancy hormone is responsible for the feeling of being unwell chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). Some women are very sensitive to this hormone, others less and in fact not all feel this symptom. Once the pregnancy is established, the agitation related to the novelty can increase the sense of nausea. In the event of frequent bouts of vomiting, the expectant mother should speak to her doctor.

Nausea in pregnancy: when does it start?

Sufferers usually feel the first symptoms already at 7-10 days after the missed period.

It typically peaks around 12-14 weeks, coinciding with the peak of the HCG hormone and goes away by the end of the fourth month.

Read also: Pregnancy, 11 symptoms of the first week

14 Constipation

Il progesterone it is at the root of pregnancy constipation and may already be peeping out among the first symptoms. Its job is to keep uterine contractions at bay but it also slows down intestinal peristalsis. The bad news is ... it's a problem that may continue or recur throughout your pregnancy.

Constipation: how to behave

Taking stock of the strategies to relieve constipation are the recommendations of the World Health Organization for a positive pregnancy experience, released in November 2022.

Between these:

  1. drink more;
  2. increase the consumption of fiber;
  3. make movement, to help the peristaltic movements of the intestine.

For further information: constipation in pregnancy

15 Nasal congestion

The increase in hormone production in the blood may also be felt in the nasal mucous membranes: your nose may be dry, bleed easily or runny.

Symptoms of pregnancy or premenstrual symptoms?

I symptoms of a pregnancy they vary from woman to woman and can often be confused with PMS, which are often similar because the hormonal situation is similar.

Let's see what are the symptoms in common between a pregnancy and the premenstrual period.

  1. Pelvic pain in the area of ​​the ovaries
  2. More sensitive and swollen breasts or nipples
  3. Headache
  4. Unstable mood

Implant losses or early pregnancy?

At a distance of 5-7 days from conception, the implantation of the embryo itself takes place in the uterine wall and precisely in conjunction with this event, small pinkish or brownish losses may occur. They are much more tenuous and scarce than the cycle and last much shorter: usually a few hours, at most one day. 

Is a feeling of fever a symptom of pregnancy?

Pregnancy weakens the immune system to prevent the embryo from being expelled from the body. So it is normal to feel a little sluggish or feverish.

Be careful though, fever is not normal. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant women never let their core body temperature exceed 39 ° C.  

Is insomnia a pregnancy symptom?

Insomnia in general is a common point that accompanies pregnant women especially in the first trimester and last trimester of pregnancy. But can it be considered an early pregnancy symptom? It could, but too little is known about it. This study from 2022 supports this.

Are you really pregnant?

These symptoms can be signs not only of an ongoing pregnancy but also of other conditions such as stress, change in the use of the birth control pill. Having them doesn't necessarily mean you're pregnant.

If you think you are expecting a baby, take a pregnancy test first and consult your doctor.

First weeks of pregnancy: what to do?

Il pregnancy test is positive? Here's what you can do right away:

  1. choose who to make yourself follow: gynecologist of all time, obstetrician, clinic, obstetrician-gynecological clinic of the hospital where you think you will be able to give birth
  2. I assumed folic acid: it would be ideal to start taking it before conception (from three months or at least one month before pregnancy) to prevent congenital anomalies, especially those concerning the neural tube.
  3. check i drugs you take and ask your gynecologist before taking any drugs (read which drugs are allowed or prohibited during pregnancy).
  4. eliminates alcohol and smoking
  5. take precautions anti-toxoplasmosis, such as eating only cooked meats and washing raw vegetables.
  6. avoid intense sports or at risk of trauma such as skiing or boxing. Activity is good in pregnancy but choose what is most in line with your new condition.
  7. avoid the sauna, because it lowers blood pressure and increases body temperature and sweating, exposing you to the risk of overheating, dehydration and fainting.
  8. drink a lot water.
  9. protect your skin from the sun with high sun protection, especially on the face, to prevent chloasma gravidarum.
  10. schedule i vaccines against influenza and whooping cough, which help protect the mother, fetus and unborn child. Both are done in the second quarter.

What about the first visit to the gynecologist during pregnancy?

It shouldn't be done too early or too late. If done early, around 6-7 weeks (but not earlier), what you see is just a "green bean" with a small beating heart. If performed later, after 10 weeks, a "miniature baby" can be seen instead.

For further information: ultrasound of the sixth week, what can be seen


  • Deutchman, M., Tubay, A. T., & Turok, D. (2009). First trimester bleeding. American Family Physician, 79, 985–994. PMID: 19514695
  • March of Dimes. (2009). Headaches. Retrieved May 20, 2022,
  • MayoClinic - Getting pregnant
  • WebMD - Early Pregnancy Symptoms
  • - Early Pregnanvy Symptom
  • American National Institute of Child Health, NICHD.
  • Prenatal care: Initial assessment from Up to Date, digital database of specialist information for doctors.

Questions and answers

What are the first signs of pregnancy?

Nausea, pain in the lower abdomen, a feeling of tightness in the breasts: these are some of the most common symptoms of a pregnancy. But this is not the case for all mothers-to-be. Find out why in the article on pregnancy symptoms.

When do the first symptoms of pregnancy appear?

The first signs of pregnancy, such as nausea, begin to show up between 2 and 8 weeks after conception.

How long does a pregnancy last?

Nine months is the answer. But this is not exactly the case: the gestation is about nine months and ten days long, that is forty weeks, or if you prefer, ten lunar months (which correspond to two hundred and eighty days).

When to take a pregnancy test?  

If a woman has a regular cycle of 28 days, the pregnancy test for home use can be carried out from the first day of delayed menstruation, i.e. approximately 7 days after the implantation of the fertilized egg and 14 days after the presumed conception.

Read also: When to take the pregnancy test

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