Some people think that when you get pregnant, you will only be able to notice when your belly starts to swell.
On the contrary, the myriad of changes would be experienced immediately during the first month of pregnancy. As a matter of fact, there are a number of signs and symptoms that can manifest before you even realize that you are pregnant!
The first month of pregnancy is a period that can be quite daunting yet exciting. This article discusses the symptoms that you could expect within the first month of your pregnancy.
Cramps and pain in the pelvic area
When a fertilized egg successfully implants in the uterus, which usually happens within 6-12 days after ovulation, cramps, and pain in the pelvic area may be felt.
In general, these last for only a couple of hours up to a maximum of 28 hours.
However, if the cramps or pain become unbearable and if they last even beyond the time you anticipate your next menstrual cycle, you should get medical attention immediately.
Pain and tenderness of the breasts
Painful or sensitive breast are very common effects during the first month of pregnancy. This is caused by the sudden surge in the level of the female hormones progesterone and estrogen.
They are similar to the breast symptoms experienced a few days before your menstrual period. However, for pregnancy, this symptom is more severe.
Aside from the pain and tenderness of the breasts, the areolas may also become darker. These are the dark areas surrounding the nipples.
Higher basal body temperature
One of the very first symptoms of pregnancy is that your basal body temperature would rise. This happens usually a week after ovulation.
Basal body temperature refers to your temperature first thing in the morning. When you get pregnant, your basal body temperature increases beyond the initial increase that takes place the day after you ovulate.
However, this symptom is not usually that noticeable unless you are actually tracking your fertile days and recording your base body temperature regularly.
There is no need to worry about an increase in this temperature unless it is higher than 37 degrees Celsius.
During the first month of pregnancy, you will usually experience implantation bleeding. This begins approximately 6-12 days after you ovulate.
It happens as a result of the embryo (in blastocyst stage) invading the lining of the uterus. Implantation bleeding is usually characterized by reddish or pinkish spotting and brown-colored discharge from the vagina.
However, if the spotting becomes heavier and becomes bright red in color, or if the vaginal discharge lasts for more than seven days, it is recommended that you see a doctor immediately and get tested for other possible issues.
You may experience more discharge from your vagina during your first month of pregnancy. This discharge is usually sticky or is of mucus-like consistency.
The discharge usually starts after ovulation. It happens because when a sperm successfully fertilizes an egg and this egg implants in the uterus, there will be an increase in the female hormone estrogen.
This results in an increase in the secretion of mucus from the cervix glands. This vaginal discharge during the first month of pregnancy is usually yellow or white in color.
However, if the discharge is more of a darker yellow or murky color, smells bad, or if it is accompanied by vaginal burning or itching, it could be a sign of an infection.
In such cases, you should consult a medical professional right away to get tested.
Usually, during the last week of your first month of pregnancy, you will experience a feeling of tiredness even if you didn’t do much.
This fatigue could be a result of the changes in your hormones that begin at the moment your egg is fertilized by the sperm.
In addition, it could be due to several factors such as:
- Fewer hours and lower quality of sleep
- Anemia, a common condition that happens when you get pregnant
- The early physiological changes that occur in pregnancy
The best way to minimize fatigue is to maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet, exercise regularly, and get enough rest and sleep.
Morning sickness and nausea
One of the most common early symptoms of pregnancy is morning sickness and it is also one of the most problematic. However, some women do not experience vomiting; rather, they only experience mild nausea or stomach queasiness.
These symptoms can begin to manifest as early as the embryo’s implantation, usually 6-12 days after you ovulate.
While they frequently happen during the morning (thus the term “morning sickness”) on an empty stomach but some women experience them the whole day.
The exact cause of morning sickness has not been identified yet. However, it is believed to be a result of the hormonal changes that happen when a woman gets pregnant.
Another possible cause is low blood sugar levels. To avoid this, you should consume small snacks frequently, such as dry toast, crackers, or fruit.
This may help relieve morning sickness. You may also try ginger chews, ginger lollipops, or ginger tea.
How your awareness is influenced
Every pregnant woman will experience unique symptoms. Not every instance will be the same.
There are some factors that might affect how aware you will be of the changes and symptoms of pregnancy during the first month.
Some of these factors include the following:
- How tuned in you are to any developments and changes in your body
- If you are having twins or more, the pregnancy symptoms will usually manifest a lot earlier
- The symptoms you’ve experienced during pregnancy in the past
- The symptoms experienced by your sibling or mother when they were pregnant
What’s the next step?
If you are experiencing some or many of the symptoms mentioned in this article, the next step is to undergo a pregnancy test to confirm if you are pregnant.
However, for accurate results, it is best to wait for 14-21 more days.
For a detailed guide on how to use a pregnancy test and more information about pregnancy, check out these articles.
Everything you need to know about pregnancy tests.
9 first-trimester symptoms of pregnancy
Everything you need to know about the morning-after pill
16 early signs of pregnancy prior to your first missed period
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