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Pregnancy symptoms

The first pregnancy symptoms can arise before your period is delayed, but they may be so subtle that can pass unnoticed unless you know your body very well or are trying to get pregnant for a long time. The first symptoms to look for are:

  1. Pinkish vaginal discharge;
  2. Cramps and abdominal swelling;
  3. Breasts are more sensitive or swollen;
  4. Fatigue;
  5. Repugnance to strong smells;
  6. Mood swings;
  7. Nausea, vomiting or excess saliva;
  8. Dizziness, sleepiness and headache;
  9. Increased urge to urinate;
  10. Pimples and oily skin.

However, these symptoms must be taken into consideration, especially after menstrual delays, because they can also be confused with PMS.

Pregnancy test

Find out if you are pregnant

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In the last month, have you had sexual intercourse without using a condom or other contraceptive method such as an IUD, implant,
  • Yes
  • No
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Have you noticed any pink vaginal discharge lately?
  • Yes
  • No
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Are you getting nauseous and want to vomit in the morning?
  • Yes
  • No
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Are you more sensitive to smells, being annoyed by smells like cigarettes, food or perfume?
  • Yes
  • No
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Does your belly look more swollen than before, making it harder to keep your jeans tight during the day?
  • Yes
  • No
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Does your skin look more oily and prone to acne?
  • Yes
  • No
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Are you feeling more tired and sleepy?
  • Yes
  • No
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Has your period been delayed for more than 5 days?
  • Yes
  • No
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Have you ever had a pharmacy pregnancy test or blood test in the last month, with a positive result?
  • Yes
  • No
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Did you take the morning-after pill recently?
  • Yes
  • No

Regardless of the outcome of this test, the best way to confirm that you are pregnant is by taking a home pregnancy test from the pharmacy, which can be done from the 1st day of menstrual delay or 14 days after intercourse within the period fertile.

Pregnancy symptoms in the first 7 days

Pregnancy symptoms

The typical symptoms of the first days of pregnancy are the most difficult to identify and are usually more easily identified if you notice very subtle differences in your body:

1. Pink vaginal discharge

When the egg is fertilized, there may be a slight pink discharge, which is actually a normal discharge that women present (excess vaginal mucus) with traces of blood caused by the spermatozoid entering the egg and its displacement until the uterus. This discharge may appear a few minutes after intercourse or up to 3 days after intimate contact, which is the life span of the sperm within the female organism. Sometimes this discharge is only observed when you clean yourself after urinating.

2. Cramps and abdominal swelling

With the fertilized ovum, there is an increase in blood flow to the pelvic region, and then female hormones take action to preserve the embryo and continue the pregnancy and this may cause some abdominal discomfort that can be recognized as being a menstrual cramp of low to medium intensity. In addition, you may still have small blood loss, similar to your period, but in lesser amount.

Abdominal swelling is also one of the first symptoms of pregnancy and is caused by the intense pelvic changes that are happening, arising more often in the first 7 days to 2 weeks. This symptom also occurs due to increased blood flow and adjustment to uterine growth, which for some may go unnoticed. Around 7 weeks of gestation the lower part of the navel begins to get hard.

Pregnancy symptoms in the first 2 weeks

Pregnancy symptoms

Symptoms that begin around the second week are the most typical of pregnancy and can last for several weeks:

3. Sensitive and swollen breasts

In the first two weeks of pregnancy, you may notice that her breasts become more sensitive and this is due to hormonal changes that stimulate the mammary glands preparing you for breastfeeding. There is also an increase in breast volume, because the mammary glands are more developed so that they can support the baby's needs after birth.

In addition, the nipples may also undergo some changes, becoming more tender and swollen, and the areola may become darker than normal because of the increased blood flow in the region. Some women may even feel very uncomfortable with the simple brushing of their blouse or bra on the nipple.

4. Fatigue

Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy and may be present throughout pregnancy, starting around the second week. This fatigue is normal and may increase during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, while the body adapts its metabolism rate to provide the energy needed for the baby's development.

Women usually identify fatigue easily because they feel that the tasks done previously are becoming too exhausting, arriving at the end of the day without energy or needing to sleep more than 10 hours a night to replenish energy levels.

5. Repugnance to strong smells

It is very common that early in pregnancy you feel repugnance to strong odors, even if they are apparently pleasing, like perfume. Most pregnant women may even vomit after feeling a strong smell, such as gasoline, cigarette smoke or cleaning products, for example.

Also, because olfaction is altered, some women may also report that there palate has changed because food doesn't taste the same. Normally the taste becomes more intense and sometimes nauseating.

6. Mood swings

In the first two weeks of pregnancy, women may notice mood swings, with no apparent cause. It is very common for pregnant women to cry in situations that would not normally make her cry and this symptom usually remains throughout pregnancy.

Pregnancy causes strong hormonal changes, which can cause an imbalance in the levels of neurotransmitters, leaving the mood more unstable. 

Pregnancy symptoms after 1 month

Pregnancy symptoms

After the first month of gestation, in addition to the delay in your period, many women begin to have other characteristic symptoms, such as:

7. Nausea, vomiting or excess saliva

Nausea and vomiting are common, especially in the morning, and these are some of the most known pregnancy symptoms, which generally appear after the 6th week of gestation and can last through pregnancy. However, nausea does not always have to be accompanied by vomiting, and it is even more frequent that nausea appears and disappears without the woman vomiting, especially in the morning.

Associated with these symptoms, excessive saliva may also occur, which makes nausea even more uncomfortable. Although it is common for women to produce excess saliva throughout gestation, it often decreases when nausea improves.

8. Dizziness, sleepiness and headache

Dizziness and untimely sleepiness are pregnancy symptoms that occur because of low blood pressure, low blood glucose level and a poor diet due to frequent nausea and vomiting. This symptoms appear as early as the first 5 weeks of pregnancy but tend to decrease after the 20th week of gestation.

Headaches are also common during pregnancy due to hormonal changes, but they are usually weak, although persistent and often women don't even associate this discomfort with pregnancy.

9. Increased urge to urinate

With the advancement of pregnancy, the body needs to produce several hormones, such as progesterone, to ensure that the baby develops in a healthy way. When this happens, the muscles of the bladder become more relaxed and it becomes more difficult to completely empty the urine that is inside the bladder and, therefore, women may feel a more frequent urge to go to the bathroom to urinate.

10. Pimples and oily skin

Hormonal changes can lead to the onset or worsening of blackheads, called scientifically acne, and therefore, after the first month of pregnancy, you may notice an increase in the oiliness of your skin, which can be controlled with the use of skin cleansers and personal hygiene products.

When to do a pregnancy test

A pregnancy test purchased at a pharmacy can be done on the first day that your period is late. If the result is negative, you can wait a further 3 to 5 days, and if menstruation continues late, a new pregnancy test can be done. If the result is still negative, evaluate the possibility of having a blood test to diagnose the pregnancy because it is more reliable and shows the amount of the Beta HCG hormone, which is only produced during pregnancy. This test will give you a positive or negative outcome and if it is positive, it will give you how many weeks along you are:

  • 7 days after fertilization: up to 25 mIU / mL
  • 4 weeks after the Last Menstruation Date: 1,000 mIU / mL
  • 5 weeks after Date of Last Menstruation: 3,000 mIU / mL
  • 6 weeks after the Date of Last Menstruation: 6,000 mIU / mL
  • 7 weeks after the Date of Last Menstruation: 20,000 mIU / mL
  • 8 to 10 weeks after the Date of Last Menstruation: 100,000 mIU / mL

However, if after 10 days of your period being late and the pharmacy pregnancy test continues to give you a negative result, you probably aren't pregnant but you should make an appointment with a gynecologist to check what may be causing your menstrual delay. See some of the possible causes in: why your period can be late.

In case of psychological pregnancy all these symptoms may be present and the only way to prove that there is no developing fetus is through exams. If the pregnancy test was negative on 2 different days, you either want to be pregnant too much or are too afraid of getting pregnant, and in both situations these symptoms may be present. If this is the case, see how to identify and treat psychological pregnancy.

What to do if the result is positive

After getting confirmation your pregnant through a urine test, it is advised to do a laboratory pregnancy test because this test indicates the amount of Beta HCG hormones present in the bloodstream and you should arrange as soon as possible an appointment with a gynecologist or obstetrician to start monitoring the pregnancy. It is important to perform these 2 exams so the doctor can compare the results.

If your result was positive, congratulations! Insert your data below to know when your baby is due:

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When to do the ultrasound

From 5 weeks of pregnancy the doctor can perform a transvaginal ultrasonography to observe the gestational sac and verify if the gestation is developing inside the uterus, because in some cases, an ectopic pregnancy can occur, which is when despite the woman being pregnant the baby is developing in the fallopian tubes. In this case, it is necessary to terminate the pregnancy because it puts the woman's life at risk if the tubes rupture.

If the doctor has not done an ultrasound before, between 8 and 13 weeks of gestation you should ask for it, so you can confirm the gestational age and when the baby is estimated to complete its 40 weeks, which should be the expected due date.

In this exam the baby is still very small and little can be seen, but it is usually very exciting for parents. It is still too early to know the sex of your baby, but if the doctor suspects it is a boy, it is likely to be. Although it still needs to be confirmed in the next ultrasound that is usually done in the second trimester of pregnancy, around 20 weeks.

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