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Couples who are trying to conceive can take plenty of steps to boost their health and to increase their chances of getting pregnant. But taking folic acid supplements and using ovulation tests will not make the “two-week wait” between ovulation and expected menstruation any easier!
Almost all women who are hoping to get pregnant watch out for early pregnancy symptoms during their luteal phase. So, which are the very earliest pregnancy symptoms — and which are actually a somewhat reliable indicator that you are really expecting a baby?
Swollen And Sore Breasts
You are probably used to experiencing breast changes throughout your menstrual cycle. Many women notice heavier and tender breasts during the second half of the cycle, as they are approaching menstruation. This “premenstrual symptom” is caused by the hormone estrogen, and a woman who has just conceived may develop swollen and sore breasts as quickly as a few days following the fertilization of her egg.
Breast changes are an inevitable part of early pregnancy. They are not, however, a reliable indicator that you have conceived — because most women will have similar breast changes before they start menstruating. Women who did conceive will soon discover that their sore breasts are there to stay. Throughout pregnancy, a woman's breasts feel heavier and more sensitive. Her nipples tend to become more pronounced, while the area around her nipples (areola) may become darker.
During the later part of the second trimester or the earlier stages of the third trimester, expectant mothers may also start leaking colostrum. This rich, nutritious substance is your baby's first milk. You'll have think about that later, and look out for other early pregnancy symptoms before you allow your mind to wonder to the last weeks of pregnancy!
Morning Sickness And A Heightened Sense Of Smell And Taste
Everyone still calls pregnancy nausea morning sickness, but you are probably aware that this characteristic nausea and sometimes vomiting can make an appearance at any time of the day or night. Some pregnant women only feel slightly queasy. Some will throw up a couple of times during their whole pregnancy. For others, pregnancy nausea and vomiting represents a daily nightmare, and they may even need to vomit multiple times in one day.
Since at least 75 percent of all pregnant women will experience pregnancy nausea in some form, this is a great symptom to look for. If you are suddenly nauseous and you are trying to conceive, pregnancy is a safer bet than a stomach bug. You may even like to use nausea as a trigger to take an early pregnancy test, as long as you know that home pregnancy tests may not be reliable before the date of your expected menstruation.
You may like to know when expectant mothers start experiencing morning sickness. For most, nausea will be a part of their daily reality by the time they have missed a period. Unfortunately, the exact cause of pregnancy nausea and vomiting is still not clear. It will be one of the pregnancy hormones, however — human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) or estrogen, most likely.
A heightened sense of smell and taste is another very common pregnancy symptom. It's under this header because it goes hand in hand with morning sickness. A newly pregnant woman may be surprised to discover that the smell of the fast food joint on the other side of the road is making her feel sick, or may be find that foods have a much stronger taste suddenly. You may go off foods you always loved, or be irritated by the smell of dust in your office.