Each woman's body experiences the very early signs of pregnancy in a different ways, and according to Zita, "everyone has their own peculiarities when they're pregnant." Since there are a lot myths out there, we've done our research and found out all of the signs that you should be aware of.
While these are the most common signs, if you are pregnant you may experience some symptoms and not others and some women may only have one! The main thing to do is to listen to your own body, you are the one who ultimately knows if something is not normal.
Remember these are only signs and the only way that you can be 100% sure you are pregnant is by taking a pregnancy test.
What are the signs of very early pregnancy?
Painful breasts - According to Zita: "a large proportion [of women] will get tender breasts." This may leave them swollen, your nipples may become bigger and darker, and your breasts slightly bigger and harder. These changes are essential in preparing your body to feed your baby.
Missed period - This is the first very early 'concrete' sign of pregnancy. However, many women have irregular or infrequent periods (oligomenorrhoea), which makes the lack of a period an unreliable indicator of pregnancy. Zita says to trust your instinct: "A lot of women's periods are regular but if they take a bit longer they sometimes think ‘what’s going on?’.
"They tend to think ‘what’s wrong with my cycle’ rather than ‘can I be pregnant or not’", so be sure to take a test if you think you could be.
Nausea and Vomiting - Zita says: "Around 70 or 80% of women will suffer some form of nausea. Not straight away in pregnancy, it can come on in six or seven weeks.” This is commonly known as morning sickness, although you can feel nauseous or be sick anytime day or night so if you feel unusually sick it's time to get that test.
Feeling very tired - "For some women, they don’t know they’re pregnant at all, and some of the first signs are just feeling very very tired - like somebody’s pulled the plug out," says Zita. "You just don’t have any energy and you want to sleep a lot so you can’t work out and you think something is wrong because you feel so exhausted." This is especially common in the first 12 weeks and is usually caused by the excess hormones in your body due to your pregnancy.
Needing to pee more often - A classic sign of early pregnancy is feeling like you need to pee more often that usual. This can happen all day and throughout the night too.
Other more minor symptoms include:
- An increase in white vaginal discharge without any soreness or irritation.
- You experience minor break-outs of spots on your skin.
- You suffer from stomach acidity,and find you're suddenly repulsed by certain foods.
- Change in appetite, one minute you can't eat then next you can't control yourself.
- Lack of interest in smoking or tobacco.
- Heightened sense of smell to the point that some smells are unbearable.
- You become irritable or hypersensitive and/or experience quite extreme mood swings.
These signs could also vary if you are going through assisted fertility. Zita says women going through IVF: "may have more symptoms earlier on through other means because you’re on drugs...and on IVF you’re producing a lot [of eggs] so you’ll have a lot of bloating...as well as tender breasts.
"A lot of those other signs will be exaggerated as well.”
If you have one or more of these symptoms and believe there is a good chance that you could be pregnant then take a pregnancy test. As Zita says: "there are tests on the market that can tell you if you're pregnant even before you miss a period."
Zita West is the founder of ‘The Zita West Clinic’ – London’s most famous holistic fertility clinic. Check out the site here and Zita's guide, 'Your Pregnancy Companion', for more information on conceiving.