Wondering if you’re pregnant? Use these 15 signs of early pregnancy to determine if a woman is pregnant before her missed period or positive pregnancy test. Which signs of early pregnancy are you experiencing?
So what exactly are signs of early pregnancy? And how are they any different than what you might normally experience days before you get your period. Can you tell the difference? This post hopes to explain just that.
15 Signs of Early Pregnancy That You May Have Overlooked
The following are 15 signs of early pregnancy I have personally experienced in my pregnancies. Very early pregnancy is defined as 3 weeks (which is the week after conception) pregnant until 5 weeks pregnant (which is right about when you can get a positive pregnancy test).
1. Waking at Night to Pee
Before I was able to get a positive pregnancy test I found myself waking up at night to go pee. I had no idea I was pregnant so I was completely oblivious that waking up had anything to do with pregnancy. I was so frustrated I couldn’t “sleep through the night”! Turns out my body was processing more fluids than usual.
2. Intense Dreams
Did you know crazy dreams are a common part of pregnancy? For me, intense dreams (ahem… sex dreams) are even a very early pregnancy symptom. My husband found this symptom the best one of all. 😉
Some women, however, may have emotionally intense dreams in lieu of sex dreams. Either way, they all seem very real! Typically, it’s a good thing they’re not real… if you know what I mean.
Unfortunately, insomnia is one of the signs of early pregnancy. I hate insomnia. There is nothing worse than being awake in the middle of the night, tired, but unable to fall back asleep. In fact, I remember a time I was awake from 1:30 am to 5:00 wishing to be asleep! Ugh.
If you’re hoping to get some sleep when pregnant try cutting out caffeine (or limiting it to before 11 am), blacking out your bedroom at night, removing electronics from the bedroom and even daily exercise. If none of those work, just know that it won’t last forever.
4. Round Ligament Discomfort
Technically, this is a pregnancy symptom that typically arrives in the second trimester, but for me it is a very early pregnancy symptom. I wouldn’t call it round ligament pain, as it’s typically called, but discomfort.
The only time I felt this in early pregnancy was when I was turning from side to side or rolling out of bed. A gentle flow yoga practice is a good way to combat this symptom.
5. Hip Joint Discomfort
Again, hip and joint discomfort is typically a symptom women experience later in pregnancy and not one of the signs of early pregnancy. However, I feel slight discomfort in my hips when I am newly pregnant.
The only idea I have as to why I feel this so early is because of the hormone released called relaxin. Relaxin is a hormone our body creates that prepares our joints for birth by making them all loosey goosey.
Again, a good yoga practice would be amazingly helpful. Yoga is great for the hips and other joints!
Spotting can be one of the most confusing signs of early pregnancy because spotting is normal right before you get your period too! Spotting could be the beginning of your period, it could also be implantation spotting, or it could also be a sign of miscarriage.
If you’ve already missed your period and you are continuing to spot it’s easy to become concerned, however, spotting in and of itself is not a reason to assume the worst. In fact, I have two children and have had three miscarriages and in every pregnancy I’ve bleed or spotted. For me spotting was not a predictor of a sustainable pregnancy.
Cramping, just like spotting, can also be one of the more confusing early signs of pregnancy. Feelings of cramping right before and during your period is typical, so again, in and of itself cramping is not a clear pregnancy symptom.
However, when I have been pregnant I have had cramping every time. Once a pregnancy is confirmed I always found myself visualizing a tiny baby burrowing in my uterus making all the cramping happen.
For me, dizziness and signs of early pregnancy always go hand in hand. The dizziness I felt was always very slight, nothing too dramatic, but I always felt it.
I chalk it up to blood pressure changes, dehydration and hormonal shifts. Even if I didn’t take a pregnancy test, the dizziness was always a clear very early pregnancy symptom for me as I felt it as early as 4 weeks pregnant.
Are you feeling like everything is terrible and nothing will ever change? Crying, mood swings, irritability can all be very early pregnancy symptoms.
My advice? Make sure to go to bed at a decent time, eat, drink and take life one step at a time. Just know, things will be a little better tomorrow morning.
Falling asleep in your car on your lunch break? Come home from work and can’t get off the couch? Wake up in the morning feeling like you didn’t get any sleep? Yeah… making a person is exhausting and can also cause one of the toughest early signs of pregnancy.
Here are some ideas to help combat pregnancy fatigue.
- If you can, take a nap in the afternoon.
- Keep a regular schedule and go to bed at the same (reasonable) time every night.
- Try not to drink a lot of water right before you go to sleep because waking to use the bathroom all night long will only add to your fatigue!
11. Breast Tenderness
Many women notice breast tenderness as one of the signs of early pregnancy. This is due to the hormonal fluctuations required to sustain a pregnancy.
Some women notice an increase in breast size, color changes of the nipple and/or areola and even an appearance of blue veins. If you are noticing these symptoms you might be pregnant!
12. Increased Sense of Smell
Another sign of early pregnancy is an increased sense of smell. I have a friend that started smelling odd things like burning dust on a lightbulb. She thought it was so strange too smell such a thing, and even asked her husband if he could smell it too. He couldn’t. Turns out she was pregnant!
Increased sense of smell is definitely one of the funnier early signs of pregnancy.
13. Elevated Basal Body Temperature
Many women keep track of their cycles and fertility by “charting” and monitoring very slight temperature fluctuations using a sensitive thermometer. After ovulation the body’s basal temperature increases by one degree or so, which if sustained over a period of a few days shows a thermal shift or an elevated basal body temperature. If this temperature stays elevated even past when you were supposed to get your period, you’re probably pregnant!
An continued, elevated basal body temperature is one of the more precise signs of early pregnancy.
14. Missed Period
Missing your period may be one of the most obvious very early pregnancy symptoms. However, it’s typically only obvious to women who have very reliable and regular menstrual cycles. If you’re anything like me, the days in any given cycle are all over the place.
The only way I know if I will be “late” is by adding 12 days (the number of days in my luteal phase (which is the portion of your cycle after you ovulate until right before you get your period) to the date I ovulated. That’s the only way I know how to predict when I’m going to get my period. If I don’t get my period by then, then I might be pregnant!
15. Positive Pregnancy Test
Last but certainly not least, a pregnancy test is the mother of all early signs of pregnancy (and the most obvious!). I know women who have gotten positive pregnancy tests as early as 7 days past ovulation. Personally, I was only successful at a positive pregnancy test at 11 maybe 10 days past ovulation.
Curious as to what my favorite pregnancy test is? It’s THIS ONE.
A close runner up are these cheap pregnancy tests on Amazon!
Signs of Early Pregnancy
Just to re-cap, these were my signs of early pregnancy.
- Waking at Night to Pee
- Intense Dreams
- Round Ligament Discomfort
- Hip Joint Discomfort
- Breast Tenderness
- Increased Sense of Smell
- Elevated Basal Body Temperature
- Missed Period
- Positive Pregnancy Test
Leave a Comment
What did I leave out? Leave me a comment and let me know what your signs of early pregnancy were. Also, let me know what you used for an early pregnancy test. Thanks!