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Pregnancy Symptoms: 7 Signs of Pregnancy

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A woman or Assigned Female at Birth (AFAB) usually experiences hormonal changes from the moment she becomes pregnant until she gives birth, causing a range of symptoms. 

Within the first 1-2 weeks after missing their menstruation, pregnant women may experience early pregnancy symptoms such as sore breasts, light spotting, exhaustion, and morning sickness.

In the later stages, their body may experience other symptoms, such as backache, headache, leg cramps, itch or tingling, constipation, and mood changes. Understanding pregnancy symptoms assists pregnant mothers and their partners in managing this journey of parenthood with understanding and comfort.

In this article, we’ll look at various pregnancy symptoms, ranging from the indicators of early pregnancy to the more noticeable changes that occur as the pregnancy advances.

Common Early Pregnancy Symptoms

Some women experince a wide range of symptoms during their pregnancy journey, while others may just have a few. Some of the most common symptoms that can help identifying pregnancy at early stages include:

  • Missed periods
  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue
  • Morning sickness
  • Changes in breasts
  • Spotting
  • Headaches and dizziness

Now, let’s look into these symptoms in detail.

Missed Periods

Missing your period is the most frequent and obvious indicator of pregnancy. When fertilization takes place between egg and sperm, the body begins to create hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin). It is a hormone released in the placenta 8-10 days after conception to help the embryo develop. 

As a result, the body fails to ovulate, resulting in a brief period of menstruation. However, missing your period does not necessarily indicate pregnancy. Stress, hormonal imbalances, vigorous dieting, Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) symptoms, and heavy exercise can all lead to missed periods. 

Hence, people who suspect pregnancy at this early stage should get a pregnancy test to determine any signs of the hCG hormone, thus confirming the pregnancy.

Most people mistake PMS symptoms with those of early pregnancy signs; To gain further knowledge on this aspect, read 7 Differences: PMS Symptoms Vs Pregnancy Symptoms.

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  • Frequent Urination

    Frequent urinationSource: pixelshot
    Frequent urination

    Frequent urination is a common symptom of early pregnancy. This symptom usually appears during the first couple of weeks following conception. 

    When you are pregnant, your body produces more blood and fluid to support the developing fetus. This forces the kidneys to work harder to filter larger volumes of blood and eliminate waste items into the urine, resulting in more frequent urination. 


    Fatigue is a common symptom experienced by many women in early pregnancy. During your first trimester, the body goes through major hormonal changes to assist with the baby’s growth and development, which might make you feel fatigued and tired. 

    Additionally, during your pregnancy, the body creates high levels of Progesterone hormone to support the growth of the fetus. Increased hormone levels could hinder the metabolic process. As a result, the body utilizes more energy in the entire digestion process, leaving you feeling fatigued and drained.

    Consult your doctor immediately if you experience severe vaginal bleeding, high temperature, and chronic abdominal pain during pregnancy.

    Morning Sickness

    Morning sickness is one of the early indicators of pregnancy and is experienced by a large percentage of pregnant women. 

    It normally begins during the sixth week of pregnancy and can last until the twelfth week or beyond. However, the severity and duration of this it can vary from person to person. 

    Symptoms include Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, headaches, and dizziness. Morning sickness usually begins in the morning, however some people may feel symptoms all day long. Those who are experiencing severe morning sickness should seek medical assistance immediately for a comprehensive diagnosis and treatment.

    Changes in Breasts

    Tender and swollen breasts are the most common symptoms of early pregnancy. These usually happen due to elevated hormone levels and start appearing 2-3 days after fertilization. 

    The symptoms will be similar to those that you may experience before menstruation. Additionally, during early pregnancy, the areola (the pigmented skin that surrounds the nipple) darkens, the breast skin hardens, and the blood vessels become more apparent. 

    However, your discomfort should considerably decrease after the first trimester of your pregnancy once your body adjusts to the hormonal fluctuations.


    Spotting during your first trimester can be worrying, although it is quite common and does not always signify a problem. When a fertilized egg attaches to the uterine lining, it usually causes minor bleeding. 

    This is known as implantation bleeding, and it normally occurs around the same time as your expected period or a little earlier.

    However, not every pregnant woman experience spotting during pregnancy. It could also be caused by other factors, including hormonal fluctuations, cervical discomfort, and vaginal infections. 

    Sometimes spotting or mild bleeding during the first trimester might indicate a miscarriage or an Ectopic pregnancy. Contact your doctor immediately if your bleeding is significant, accompanied by discomfort or dizziness.

    Headache and Dizziness

    Headaches and dizziness during early pregnancy are very common and can be associated with a variety of causes related to the hormonal shifts and changes your body experiences during pregnancy. 

    When you are pregnant, your blood volume boosts considerably to nourish the growing fetus. This can occasionally result in fluctuations in blood pressure, which can induce dizziness and headaches.

    Other Symptoms as Pregnancy Progress

    Woman suffering from back painSource: sitthiphong
    Woman suffering from back pain

    As your pregnancy progresses, you may also experience other symptoms. However, these symptoms may vary among individuals and are usually as follows:

    • Back pain
    • Shortness of breath
    • Constipation
    • Hemorrhoids (piles)
    • Heartburn and indigestion
    • Itchy skin 
    • Leg and abdominal cramps
    • Mood changes
    • Food cravings
    • Tingling sensation in hands
    • Vaginal discharge
    • Swelling in the legs and hands
    • Acne

    When Should I Take Pregnancy Test

    Missed periods do not always indicate pregnancy. Stress or hormonal imbalances can also cause missed menstruation. The most certain way to confirm pregnancy is to take a pregnancy test.

    Most home pregnancy tests guarantee to provide reliable results as early as the first day of missing menstruation. 

    Yet, for the most precise outcomes, it is usually advisable to wait at least a week after your missing period. This allows your body to create enough of the pregnancy hormone hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) to be detected.

    However, if you have irregular cycles or are uncertain when you ovulate, you should consider waiting a little longer or consult a healthcare professional for assistance.


    Missed periods, morning sickness, fatigue, sore breasts, and increased urination are some of the common pregnancy symptoms. From the first signs, such as fatigue and nausea, to the later symptoms of weight gain and mood changes, understanding these symptoms may help people identify and enjoy the transformational journey of pregnancy. 

    It’s essential to remember that pregnancy experiences vary, and symptoms can be influenced by hormone changes. Due to this, some people feel pregnant within days of conception, and others do not experience symptoms for weeks. If you think you are pregnant, you should take a home pregnancy test or consult your gynaecologist for confirmation.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What week do symptoms of pregnancy begin?

    Pregnancy symptoms, including morning sickness (nausea and vomiting), usually start while you’re 4 to 6 weeks pregnant. However, it may vary among individuals.

    Can someone be pregnant without having any symptoms?

    Yes, it is possible to be pregnant without having any visible signs. Each pregnancy is different. Some women may not feel common pregnancy symptoms such as Nausea, breast soreness, or fatigue, particularly in the early stages of the pregnancy. 

    Is constipation a symptom of pregnancy?

    Yes, constipation is a common symptom of pregnancy. Hormonal changes during pregnancy, notably increasing Progesterone levels, might relax digestive tract muscles and inhibit bowel motions.

    Is Diarrhea a symptom of pregnancy?

    Yes, Diarrhea may be a sign of pregnancy, although it is less recognized compared to other symptoms such as Nausea or exhaustion. Hormonal changes, notably an increase in the hormone Progesterone, may affect digestion and cause loose stools or Diarrhea in some pregnant women. 

    How can I self-check for pregnancy by touching my stomach?

    Pregnancy hormone changes will cause abdominal discomfort, especially if you touch your stomach with your hands. Pregnancy can cause mothers’ stomachs to feel tighter than usual.

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    Photo of author Janet Fudge
    Janet Fudge is a highly skilled and experienced pharmacologist who serves as a contributing writer for With a strong academic background from a premier US University and a passion for helping others, Janet has become a trusted voice in the pharmaceutical world. After completing her Doctor of Pharmacy degree, Janet embarked on a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry, working with various clients, including hospitals, retail pharmacies, and drug manufacturers. Her in-depth knowledge of pharmacology and dedication to patient-centered care has led her to excel in her field. As a writer for, Janet uses her wealth of expertise to provide readers with accurate, reliable, and up-to-date information on various topics related to medicine and healthcare. Her engaging writing style and ability to break down complex topics into easily digestible content make her a valuable resource for healthcare professionals and the general public.
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