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Signs of pregnancy

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When do the first signs of pregnancy appear?

What Are Unsure Signs Of Pregnancy?

What are likely signs of pregnancy?

What Are Safe Signs Of Pregnancy?

When does a pregnancy test make sense?

How do I take a pregnancy test?

How are early signs of pregnancy different from PMS?

The beginning of pregnancy

“Am I possibly pregnant?” Often women who want to have children  have the feeling that they might be pregnant even before the period has failed. Women who are already mothers can often feel the first signs of pregnancy very early on.

The first trimester, early pregnancy, can be characterized by these signs of pregnancy. In addition to the most well-known indications such as morning sickness or food cravings, there are many more indications that you are expecting a baby - even if the final certainty is of course only after visiting the gynecologist with an ultrasound examination.

Of course, the signs of pregnancy can vary in type and severity from woman to woman. Most women who want to have children wait eagerly for the first signs of pregnancy, such as nausea, vomiting or sensitive nipples, after stopping the pill. These are caused by the hormonal change, but are of course still very uncertain indications, especially in the first  weeks of pregnancy .

Basically, pregnancy symptoms can be divided into uncertain, probable and certain indications.

Here we give you an overview of 18 pregnancy signs, how a pregnancy test works - and what happens at the beginning of pregnancy.

When do the first signs of pregnancy appear?

Women with a good body image can often feel very early on that their desire to have children has been fulfilled and that something has changed - usually even before the period has stopped. In fact, as soon as a fertilized egg has implanted in the uterus, a woman's body begins to change. An implantation pain can manifest itself as a slight pulling in the abdomen between the 7th and 10th day after fertilization - comparable to the feeling of a beginning period.

Approximately every fourth woman has very light, light bleeding a few days before the otherwise expected period - the so-called implantation bleeding. This light bleeding can be triggered by minimal damage to the lining of the uterus caused by the implantation of the fertilized egg.

At this time, the woman is mathematically already in the 4th week of pregnancy (SSW). The calculation of pregnancy begins on the first day of the last period, although ovulation and conception were only about 2 weeks ago. However, since these often cannot be precisely determined, the beginning of the last period has been chosen as a fixed point of orientation.

What Are Unsure Signs Of Pregnancy?

In fact, a woman's body begins to change as soon as a fertilized egg is implanted in the uterus. The body begins to produce the pregnancy hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), which women with a sensitive instinct can perceive very early on from a wide variety of signs.

Most women are eagerly awaiting the first symptoms of pregnancy, such as nausea, vomiting or sensitive nipples. These are caused by the hormonal change, but are of course still very unsafe indications.

They can vary from woman to woman and can be felt in different degrees. If you would like to have a little more certainty now, you can do an early pregnancy test - but you should still enjoy the result with caution. However, an early pregnancy test only makes sense from nine days after fertilization.

Many pregnant women report that the first sign they notice is a feeling of tension or pulling in their breasts . Even the smallest touch can be perceived as extremely uncomfortable. These feelings of tension are caused by the hormones estrogen and progesterone, which make the breasts swell. The hormone level levels off again after the first three months, so that the sensitivity of the breasts then usually subsides. A little tip: Maternity bras can be of great help during this time.

Probably the best-known sign of early pregnancy is morning sickness , which usually occurs between the 6th and 12th week of pregnancy.

In fact, over two thirds of pregnant women are familiar with the symptom of nausea. However, women can suffer from a queasy stomach at any other time of the day. Morning sickness usually goes away on its own between the 12th and 18th week of pregnancy (SSW). 

Unsure signs of pregnancy:

Nausea or vomiting

Cravings / sudden disgust for food

constipation

increased need to urinate

increased salivation

Tiredness / exhaustion

Headache, dizziness

Slight implantation bleeding and implantation pain

increased discharge

Breast tenderness, enlargement of the nipples

You should keep in mind that while these can all be pregnancy symptoms, they don't have to be. Because naturally every woman and every pregnancy is unique! In order to gain clarity, it is definitely advisable to visit a gynecologist who can use ultrasound or a pregnancy test (blood test) to determine without a doubt whether you are pregnant.

What are likely signs of pregnancy?

Are you experiencing one or more likely signs of pregnancy? Then the probability of pregnancy is quite high. A pregnancy test and a visit to a gynecologist can give you precise information.

In particular, changing the hormonal situation can now change the body. When it comes to the likely signs of pregnancy, the first place for most women is the absence of a menstrual period .

However, keep in mind that there could be other reasons as well. Stress, diets or hormonal imbalances can also trigger waiting for the menstrual period.

There is also a likelihood of pregnancy if the basal temperature has risen . The basal temperature is the body heat after waking up without physical strain. It is between 36.5 ° C and 37 ° C. Before and during the menstrual period, the basal temperature drops. However, if this is elevated for at least 18 days, this can be a symptom of pregnancy. The prerequisite, however, is that women have already measured the temperature regularly before becoming pregnant in order to have comparison options.

Likely signs of pregnancy:

missing period

positive pregnancy test (detection of beta-hCG)

increased basal temperature (at least 18 days)

Increased pigmentation of the areola, linea nigra from the 15th week of pregnancy

gynecological signs such as loosening of the cervix and enlargement of the uterus

What Are Safe Signs Of Pregnancy?

Congratulations - you are pregnant! Now there is no longer any doubt!

In the case of certain signs of pregnancy, the signs are based on the child - and are medically determined.

As early as the 5th week of pregnancy, the amniotic sac and the embryo can be seen using ultrasound . From the 7th week of pregnancy onwards, there is often an unforgettable experience for pregnant women: From now on, the cardiac activities of the embryo can be shown in the ultrasound for the first time ! Only then do many women really realize that a new life has emerged.

Safe Pregnancy Signs:

Detection of the amniotic sac / embryo by means of ultrasound

Detection / hearing of the heart sounds of the embryo

Noticeable child movements and palpable child parts through the abdominal wall

When does a pregnancy test make sense?

If you notice the first signs of early pregnancy after stopping the pill, you can take a pregnancy test after your missed period. These self-tests measure the level of the pregnancy hormone hCG in the urine.

You can get the test in the (online) pharmacy or in the drugstore. In this way, you can quickly find out whether you are pregnant or not at home.

The pregnancy tests differ depending on the manufacturer in terms of execution and handling.

If you want to know for sure before you miss your menstrual period, the doctor can determine this with a blood test. Since small amounts of hCG can also be detected in the blood, the blood test can provide certainty as early as one week after fertilization.

How do I take a pregnancy test?

Always read the package insert through at the beginning, as there are different details to consider with each test. A pregnancy test carried out at home will detect the pregnancy hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) in the urine. This hormone is usually produced in the placenta of the pregnant woman. It is often recommended by manufacturers to hold the test strip in the midstream urine. So you have to first pass a little urine and then do the test. The morning urine increases the likelihood of a reliable test result.

The positive result of the pregnancy test is usually shown in the form of two colored lines or the word "pregnant" appears on a digital test.

You can find detailed information on pregnancy, different types of tests, possible causes of errors and more here .

How are early signs of pregnancy different from PMS?

The unloved PMS (premenstrual symptoms) and the first signs of pregnancy can hardly be much further as a result, as they either mean that you are pregnant or not.

But first - what actually is premenstrual syndrome?

The term “PMS” is understood to mean the regularly occurring psychological or physical complaints before the next menstrual period, which can start up to 14 days in advance. However, once the bleeding begins, these symptoms subside. Around 85% of women are familiar with some of the monthly symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.

In fact, it can be difficult to distinguish the symptoms of PMS and the first signs of pregnancy from the symptoms. Precisely because the complaints are very individual and can vary in type and severity from woman to woman.

Women who suffer from PMS often complain of pulling pains in the abdomen, tender breasts, sudden weight gain, mood changes or headaches. But nausea, food cravings or the opposite loss of appetite are also often described. However, these symptoms can also be interpreted as symptoms of early pregnancy. اعراض الحمل

However, there are certain signs that are more likely to be attributed to early pregnancy than to PMS. Most of the time, the symptoms of pregnancy are more pronounced or vary slightly from the monthly symptoms.

Light bleeding, which is often interpreted as intermenstrual bleeding, can turn out to be implantation bleeding between the 7th and 10th day after fertilization of the egg cell . This pale, light bleeding occurs in about every fourth woman. Excessive discharge, sudden, persistent tiredness, and extreme exhaustion can also be the first signs of pregnancy. 

A fairly good indication of a pregnancy can be given by a permanent, slightly increased basal temperature even before the menstrual period has stopped . An increased basal temperature is clearly associated with pregnancy as a symptom, but is not associated with PMS.

A lack of menstruation is considered by most women even as a sure sign of pregnancy. This is often the case in conjunction with other signs of pregnancy. Please keep in mind that pregnancy must first be confirmed with certainty by a pregnancy test and a visit to the gynecologist.

The beginning of pregnancy - the first weeks of pregnancy

A new life begins - and maybe you don't know anything about your happiness!

The next few months will be particularly exciting and involve many changes. Rapid processes are now happening in your body and very soon they will turn your life upside down. Enjoy the period of pregnancy because every week brings you closer to your child!

Especially in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy , the 1st trimester, the all-important developmental steps of your baby take place. And your body is now going through a time full of small miracles and adjusting to the new phase of life. Here we give you an overview of the most important developmental steps of the unborn child and how your body now adapts to the changed situation. 

1st      week of pregnancy 

You are in the week with the first day of your last period. Even if it sounds strange at first, you are not pregnant at all in the first week of pregnancy.

To make it easier to calculate the duration of pregnancy, the first day of the last period is used as the key date for the start of pregnancy. The first week of pregnancy can therefore actually only be determined in retrospect.

A fertilization is not possible now, but only again in the 3rd week of pregnancy .

If you want to have children and want to become pregnant in a targeted manner, you can consciously prepare yourself for pregnancy. Create rest times for yourself, avoid nicotine or alcohol and eat healthily.

2nd      week of pregnancy

In the second week there is still no pregnancy. Your body prepares itself as usual to build up the lining of the uterus. You will be fertile again towards the end of this week. Your “fertile days” are some time before to some time after ovulation (ovulation).

The focus of a healthy diet should be an adequate supply of folic acid before the start of pregnancy. Because the pregnancy vitamin ensures healthy development of the fetus, especially in the first weeks of pregnancy. For example, folic acid is required for the formation of the neural tube in early pregnancy.

The B vitamin folic acid is contained in whole grain products, leafy vegetables, broccoli, nuts, radishes and offal such as veal and poultry liver.

     3rd week of pregnancy 

In this week after ovulation, the egg cell is fertilized and new life begins - in the 3rd week of pregnancy, the starting signal for a new life is given, usually unnoticed by the woman! A whole series of hormonal changes now begin in your body, which prepare you for pregnancy and which initially enable the fertilized egg cell to implant in the uterus.

Some pregnant women feel a feeling of tension in their breasts as early as the 3rd week of pregnancy or have a slight tugging in their abdomen. Often, however, this is not properly perceived and interpreted as a sign of pregnancy.

If you suspect you are pregnant, you can get confirmation from an early test. Pregnancy can already be determined at this early stage, because the body produces the pregnancy hormone hCG just 24 hours after fertilization.

     4th      week of pregnancy

The fertilized egg cell has reached the uterus and at the beginning of the 4th week of pregnancy it nests firmly in the built-up uterine lining. Successful conception is now being spoken of. This can lead to a slight implantation bleeding. Many pregnant women mistakenly assess this implantation bleeding as a menstrual period.

Pregnancy hormones are now being produced and will soon show up through a variety of signs.

Anyone who has previously refrained from regular exercise should start now at the latest. You will need strength and endurance over the next several months. Of course, you should be careful not to exhaust yourself completely or to engage in accident-prone sports.

Endurance sports such as Nordic walking, cycling or swimming are well suited. The best thing to do is to do some sport with the father-to-be!

The placenta, yolk sac and amniotic fluid cavity now develop in order to be able to supply the embryo with vital nutrients and oxygen.

     5th      week of pregnancy

Mathematically, it begins for you as early as the 2nd month of pregnancy. The monthly bleeding has stopped for the first time and is the first correct indication for many women that they may be pregnant. The voltage increases! Now you can take a pregnancy test at home too  . The two suddenly visible lines on the test strip will change your life completely.

Now is the time to get an appointment with your gynecologist, who will then provide final certainty and also medically confirm the pregnancy.

In the 5th week of pregnancy, your body continues to adapt to the pregnancy. The cervix now closes with a mucus plug to protect the uterus from pathogens.

The first signs of pregnancy can already make themselves felt through the hormonal influences with tiredness, weakness, nausea or mood swings. 

     6th      week of pregnancy

Your gynecologist will now find that the cervix is ​​firm and immobile - the first palpable sign of pregnancy. As soon as the pregnancy has been determined with certainty during the initial examination, you will receive a maternity card. In any case, take the maternity card with you to every examination; it is best to carry it with you at all times.

The embryo and the yolk sac can already be seen during the ultrasound examination. Your baby is around 2-4 mm tall by 6 weeks of pregnancy. And a very special moment for expectant mothers and fathers: the embryo's heartbeat can already be displayed for the first time! The little heart works about twice as fast as yours.

In the 6th week of pregnancy, there is usually nothing to be seen externally in first-time women. You may even have lost some weight from being sick. However, your uterus has already doubled in size. As a result, you may need to go to the bathroom more often.

     7th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

The usual pregnancy symptoms such as nausea or extreme sudden tiredness may increase. If you have the opportunity, take some time out. Your body has to do a lot at the moment!

In this phase, pregnant women often have to struggle with psychological tension, which can be triggered by the hormone progesterone released. Don't worry, that is also quite normal! Doubts and uncertainties as to whether you are doing everything right and will cope with the new life situation are probably part of a pregnancy. Talk to your partner openly about your feelings and worries - sometimes it helps just to be hugged.

Many pregnant women also complain of problems sleeping through the night. Especially when lying down, the ligaments to which the uterus are fixed in the body stretch and can lead to uncomfortable pulling in the abdomen. Rest during the day to regain your strength.

8th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

You may already notice the first changes in your figure, because the waist and hips are now increasing slightly. Especially when you already have children, the belly usually grows a little faster than in first-time women.

Even if the uterus is growing steadily, weight gain in the first trimester of pregnancy (1st trimester) is rather small, between 1.5 and 2 kilograms are common. Towards the end of pregnancy, the scale will show an average of 12-13 kilograms more. However, these are only guidelines, because the weight gain during pregnancy is also related to your initial weight. 

At this point, your baby weighs a little under 100 grams and is between 12 and 14 mm tall. The face slowly begins to define itself, eyelids and upper lip appear and a small tip of the nose becomes visible. The appendages for the external auditory canal and the auricle are now also formed.

     9th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

You are now in the 3rd month of pregnancy and it can already happen that you notice shortness of breath and exhaustion when you have exerted yourself. Nature made it so that you share your oxygen with your baby. If you have a slight oxygen deficiency, go for a walk in the fresh air.

You now have more appetite again, but water retention and the increased blood volume also lead to more body weight from this week onwards. You may also have special pregnancy cravings. Make others laugh when you want to grab the much-cited jar of pickles or eat sour rollmops.

By the way, fish, especially cold-water fish like tuna or mackerel, is very healthy during pregnancy. Fish contains the valuable omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA. The fatty acid DHA is essential for the healthy development of the brain and eyes and is already incorporated in the womb, especially in the 3rd trimester.

Your baby's brain is now growing rapidly. Already existing nerve cells in the brain begin to network and to break down into special areas. At this stage of development, it would be particularly harmful to the baby if you were to drink alcohol.

     10th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

A "nice" side effect of pregnancy in the truest sense of the word: around the 10th week of pregnancy, most women 's hair becomes shinier and stronger. This is due to the hormone estrogen that is produced in the placenta. Some women will probably regret the fact that the estrogen content drops rapidly again after giving birth.

Between the 9th and 12th week of pregnancy, your gynecologist will do the first of the three planned ultrasound examinations. The size (crown and rump length) of your baby is determined precisely and the due date is corrected if necessary. In the 10th week of pregnancy it has reached a size of about 3 centimeters.

From the 10th week of pregnancy, the embryo is called a fetus and is a small person with facial features, flexible arms and legs. The vital organs are fundamentally developed and mature in the further course of pregnancy.

If you are expecting male offspring, his testicles are already starting to produce the hormone testosterone - with luck, however, the small difference can only be seen on ultrasound from the 18th week of pregnancy.

     11th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

During the course of pregnancy, you will no longer have cold hands and feet due to the increased blood volume in your body. You feel warmer than usual. This may also make you thirsty or have a lot of saliva in your mouth. A tummy is now mostly recognizable to outsiders and the amniotic sac is now so large that it fills the entire pelvis.

Unfortunately, some pregnant women now struggle with constipation. Once again, the hormones are to blame, they have a relaxing effect on all muscles, including the intestinal muscles. Of course, nature has also thought of something here: the nutrients from food can be utilized even better thanks to the slowed digestion.

By the 11th week of pregnancy, your baby weighs approximately 13-15 grams and is between 3 and 5 centimeters tall. The brain is growing rapidly! An incredible 250,000 nerve cells are formed per minute and the mouth and nose function together.

The urinary system begins to work and the intestines grow rapidly.

     12th      week of pregnancy (SSW)

The first trimester of pregnancy is done! The risk of a miscarriage decreases enormously from the 12th week of pregnancy. Many expectant mothers and fathers find that this is the right time to share the good news with everyone. Hardly anything is more beautiful and moving than telling the family the due date and saying that they will be grandma, grandpa or aunt and uncle!

Many pregnancy symptoms such as nausea, tiredness or mood swings decrease at the end of the 1st trimester because your body has now adjusted to the pregnancy. Enjoy the relaxing time to come!

Much will change visibly in the further course of pregnancy. The baby bump grows, the breasts get bigger and the hip contours slowly disappear.

Please make sure that you get enough iodine through your diet. The development of the thyroid gland and the thyroid hormones of the baby now begin and require the trace element for this.

At 12 weeks of gestation, your baby is 4-5 cm tall and has a heartbeat of 120-160 beats per minute. The internal organs are working and the small brain is already sending signals to the muscles and can trigger movements. Some babies are already starting to suckle their thumbs. The ossification continues and the yolk sac dissolves completely. From now on, the placenta supplies the baby with everything essential.

Your little one is now fully developed and will continue to gain size and weight for the exciting weeks that follow. 

Find out more details about the first weeks of pregnancy and all following weeks until the birth of your baby!


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Signs of pregnancy

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Updated on April 14, 2021

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