Some women sense that they are pregnant even before their period stops. Which early signs of pregnancy are reliable? All the typical pregnancy symptoms at a glance.
Your period stopping is usually the first sign of pregnancy. If you notice other physical changes, such as fatigue or breast tenderness, a pregnancy test will soon clear things up.
The early signs of pregnancy are varied and not yet clearly defined. Every woman experiences them to different degrees, if at all. These symptoms also appear in different weeks of pregnancy for different women. Plus, these symptoms may also be caused by totally different factors and some are identical to those of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
As a general rule, the more symptoms you experience, the more likely it is that you’re pregnant.
The easiest way to find out whether you’re pregnant or not is to take a pregnancy test, which you can buy from the supermarket or pharmacy. Regardless of whether the test has a digital display or a simple test strip, all pregnancy tests measure the content of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in urine. The body produces this pregnancy hormone as soon as an egg cell is fertilised – i.e. as soon as you’re pregnant. After fertilisation, the hCG value doubles approximately every two days. With a traditional pregnancy test, the result is up to 95 per cent reliable from the first day after your missed period or two weeks after ovulation.
Tip: Take the pregnancy test the first time you urinate in the morning. That’s when the hCG concentration is at its highest.
An early pregnancy test can detect a pregnancy as early as five days before the expected period. However, early pregnancy tests are less reliable. If the result is negative but you then miss your period, it is advisable to take another test.
If you continue to notice pregnancy symptoms even though the second pregnancy test is also negative, your gynaecologist can clarify beyond a doubt whether you’re pregnant or not by means of a blood test or an ultrasound. The hCG level in the blood can be measured as early as six to nine days after fertilisation.
The early signs of pregnancy are very similar to the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). But a raised basal temperature can only be an indicator of pregnancy. Your basal body temperature is your body temperature right after you wake up. It is normally between 36.5 and 37 degrees Celsius. Before and during your period, your basal temperature drops. During pregnancy, it rises by around 0.5 degrees Celsius and remains at this level. If it remains increased for at least eighteen days, this can be a symptom of pregnancy. In order to be able to make a reliable comparison, you should already be taking your temperature on a regular basis before you become pregnant.
If you don’t have any symptoms, you don’t need to go to see your gynaecologist right after a positive pregnancy test. It’s useful to have your first examination from the fifth week of pregnancy.
Here’s how to calculate how many weeks pregnant you are: the first week of pregnancy (1st WoP) begins with the first day of your last period. Want to know the most important dates for your baby?
You can already insure your child during your pregnancy. This means they will have comprehensive cover from birth, without requiring a medical examination.
Lots of rest, no stress, enough exercise – a healthy lifestyle will create the ideal conditions for you and your little one to thrive. Take it down a notch, avoid alcohol and nicotine and only take medication in consultation with your doctor.
Make a conscious effort to maintain a balanced diet. In principle, you don’t need special dietary supplements. Some exceptions are folic acid and possibly vitamin D. A folic acid deficiency can cause serious developmental problems in the baby’s central nervous system, brain and spinal cord.
Especially in the early stages of pregnancy, it’s important to ensure that your diet is rich in folic acid: lots of vegetables, fruit and wholegrain products. If approved by your doctor, it is advisable to take 0.4 milligrams of folic acid every day until the twelfth week of pregnancy.
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