Symptoms of pregnancy or premenstrual symptoms?

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Symptoms of pregnancy vary a lot from woman to woman and even from pregnancy to pregnancy: some may experience all the common symptoms, others only a few symptoms, and still others may feel nothing. Even when symptoms occur in the very early stages, they can easily be confused with PMS symptoms, which are often similar because the hormonal situation is similar.

In general, some symptoms may be more frequent and more pronounced at the beginning of a pregnancy than during the premenstrual period, while others are definitely common to both phases. To be sure, however, the only possible way is to perform a pregnancy test.

In this article

  • Early pregnancy symptoms
  • Very common symptoms with the premenstrual period
  • Video: How to Recognize Pregnancy Symptoms


Read also: Symptoms of the first week of pregnancy

Early pregnancy symptoms

  1. Delayed menstruation For women who have a regular cycle, the absence of menstruation is the first and most reliable sign of a pregnancy in progress. However, a delay does not necessarily mean that you are pregnant, because it can be caused by other causes, such as irregular cycles, certain medications, the presence of diseases such as diabetes or polycystic ovary syndrome. (Read also: the cycle does not come)
  2. Slight bleeding At the beginning of pregnancy, there may be slight bleeding, which is difficult to confuse with menstruation because it lasts less, usually a day, and is lighter in color. These losses usually occur at the time of embryo implantation in the uterus (between one and two weeks after conception), but can occur throughout the first 12 weeks.
  3. Nausea or vomiting It is one of the most typical symptoms and can appear between 2 and 8 weeks after conception, to continue throughout the pregnancy. Not all women, however, suffer from it and for this reason the absence of nausea cannot be taken as a sign of missed pregnancy.
  4. Fatigue Some women feel tired even before menstruation, but the phenomenon is very pronounced in the first weeks of pregnancy, when, due to hormonal changes, some come to feel really exhausted.
  5. Urge to urinate more often As early as the first weeks of pregnancy, some women feel the need to pee more often than normal. This is because, with pregnancy, the body begins to produce a hormone called chorionic gonadotropin which increases the blood supply to the pelvic region. This increases the amount of fluids filtered by the kidneys and therefore the amount of urine.
  6. Skin hyperpigmentation Already from the first days you may notice a slight darkening of the areola and nipple, to which the appearance of the linea alba between the navel and pubis will be added later: the "fault" always of the pregnancy hormones, which stimulate the production of melanocyte cells, the cells that "make" the skin's dark pigment.
  7. Hunger, deso or aversion to certain foods, sensitivity to odors At the beginning of pregnancy, the senses are refined and some foods or smells that were previously pleasant become even repellent. This can occur for example with coffee or the smell of tobacco and probably represents a defense mechanism against mother and child, since they are dangerous substances. Some women, on the other hand, experience a marked increase in hunger and the deso of some foods in particular, which, however, can also occur before menstruation.
Read also: Symptoms of the first week of pregnancy

Very common symptoms with the premenstrual period

  1. Pelvic pain in the ovary area they could occur both if there is a pregnancy and just before menstruation.
  2. More sensitive or swollen breasts or nipples Due to the hormonal changes taking place (both during pregnancy and just before menstruation), the breasts can feel more plump, swollen and heavy, or even sore in some places.
  3. Headache.
  4. Unstable mood and irritability.

Sources for this article:

National Health Service (NHS), National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), Ministry of Health (Pregnancy, know your skin)


Ultrasound of the fetus: the images month after month

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What happens if the ultrasounds become author's? The result is the following: nine wonderful images documenting the development of the fetus in the mother's womb month by month ....

Read also: When the first symptoms of a pregnancy appear

Video: How to Recognize Pregnancy Symptoms

In this video the gynecologist, Dr. Alfonso Rossetti, explains what are the signs of an ongoing pregnancy and how to distinguish pregnancy symptoms from premenstrual ones.

And here's another video on how ovulation works.

Questions and answers

What are the early symptoms of pregnancy? 

Delayed menstruation, light bleeding, nausea or vomiting, tiredness, urge to urinate more often, skin hyperpigmentation, hunger or aversion to certain foods, and hypersensitivity to odors.

What are the symptoms of the menstrual cycle that are most commonly confused with those of a pregnancy? 

Pelvic pain in the area of ​​the ovaries, swollen breasts or nipples, headache, unstable mood and irritability.

How to be sure that you are pregnant? 

The only way to be sure is to take a pregnancy test.

  • pregnancy symptoms
  • premenstrual symptoms
  • weeks 1-13
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