From the time of conception, many changes are taking place in your body to prepare you for childbirth, motherhood, and to grow your wee one from a tiny speck to that cute bundle of joy you can’t wait to hold!
Some of these early symptoms can be distressing and unwelcome, but take heart that they are proof of the new life that growing within you. And during these first few weeks and months, when not much belly growth is visible yet (you may even lose some weight thanks to the nausea and a propensity to hurl), they can be comforting reminders to you that this pregnancy is very real indeed, and a baby’s on the way!
Every woman’s body is different, so you may or may not experience some, all or even none of these symptoms! That’s why you should take a proper pregnancy test if you suspect you might be expecting.
While these symptoms can give clues about the bun in the oven, many of them may be symptoms of various illnesses, ranging from urinary tract infection (UTI) to breast cancer. Conversely, it could just be a bad case of PMS, and nothing more. Moral of the story: Do get yourself checked out by a professional as soon as possible.
1. Tender, swollen or painful breasts
If your breasts or nipples are feeling extra sensitive these days, that could be the effect of pregnancy hormones kicking in, and getting your body ready for the important task of breast-feeding in a mere nine months’ time.
2. Darkened aerolas
Early pregnancy hormones can cause your aerolas (the pigmented area on the breast around the nipple) to grow darker and, sometimes, larger.
Are you finding it harder to drag yourself out of bed each morning? And ending each day exhausted and longing for your beauty sleep? That overwhelming sense of lethargy is again thanks to your hormones expending lots of energy to build the placenta for baby.
You may find yourself battling with a constant queasiness or occasional dizzy spells, sometimes with vomiting too. The official term for this is “morning sickness”, but you’ll soon realize it can hit you any time of the day or night!
5. Heightened sense of smell.
Previously favoured aromas can suddenly lose their appeal. Other smells that have never been on your radar may now seem overwhelming at times. And, linked with the above point, some smells may make you feel like vomiting. Avoid candle and soap shops and crowded hawker centres for a while, we say.
By Dorothea Chow