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The Beginning of a Change – Your First Pregnancy Symptoms

There are some women who seem to know instinctively as soon as they’ve conceived. Others who are especially sensitive to changes in their bodies may suspect a pregnancy even before they’ve missed a period. In fact, almost every woman experiences early pregnancy symptoms – although not every woman immediately associates these signs with pregnancy.

Missing a menstrual period is often one of the first signs of pregnancy. However, there are other things that can cause you skip a period, such as stress or weight loss. Some women experience spotting when they would’ve had their periods, even if they’re actually pregnant. Some women even continue have spotting during the early months of pregnancy when their periods would have arrived. Some women also experience cramping feelings as their uteruses begins to grow.

Breast changes also begin early in pregnancy. Your breasts may feel much as they do before your period, but usually the sensations will be more pronounced. For example, your breasts may feel full, tender or tingly. If you previously experienced premenstrual tenderness only in your nipples, you may find that your entire breast now feels tender or tingly. Soon you’ll detect darkening of the color of your nipples and areola. Your breasts may also be so tender that even your clothing pressing on them seems uncomfortable. Fortunately, this extreme breast tenderness usually ends around the end of the first trimester.

Fatigue is also common in early pregnancy as your body's energy reserves are directed towards the changes your body is undergoing. You may feel as if you have less stamina, or you may be so tired that you feel like you just can't keep going. Try to get as much rest as you can and eat a healthy diet to get the nutrients you need. You’ll generally begin to feel more energized as the first trimester ends.

Morning sickness is another common symptom during the first trimester. However, “morning” sickness is a bit of misnomer, as it can affect you any time of day. You may only experience a slight feeling of queasiness, or you may throw up a number of times. You may feel slightly nauseated all day – around the clock – or only at certain times of day.

Many women also feel bloated early in pregnancy. They also find that they’re urinating more frequently in response to the sudden surge of pregnancy hormones. Those same hormones can cause constipation, but with proper diet, most constipation can be easily relieved.

In addition, pregnant women frequently become hypersensitive to smells. Certain smells may induce nausea almost immediately – even smells that were previously pleasant. Even women who previously smoked or drank coffee may find the smell of these things offensive while they’re pregnant.

Finally, you may find yourself experiencing an aversion to certain foods and beverages as well, while you begin to crave others. Some women crave a particular food or a particular class of foods, such as salty foods or fruits. Other women find their cravings change from day to day. As with all the other symptoms discussed here, your pregnancy experience will be unique from other women’s – possibly even from your previous pregnancies.

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