Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms & tips from a Mom/RN
Pregnancy symptoms can be very subtle, or they can knock your socks right off. If you are one of the lucky souls who feels just dandy the whole time, well the rest of us don't care much for you. I swear every time I got pregnant, and yes that was a heck of a lot of times, I had some pretty sure symptoms. So here I am sharing what I have seen over and over with myself and my friends. Remember there is a difference between really early signs (like before a positive pregnancy test and the traditional early pregnancy signs). I will also list the traditional signs after the first 5 which may be the ones that let you know before you get the plus sign.
Why I am here and who I am:
Hey mama, I am Trish— AKA Labor Nurse Mama. I am a labor and delivery nurse with over 15 years of high-risk OB experience. I am also a mama to 7 kids and have given birth to 6. This means I am quite familiar with the postpartum period and how to navigate it. I am the online birth class educator for Calm Labor Confident Birth and The VBAC Lab birth classes and the mama expert inside our Calm Mama Society a pregnancy & postpartum membership community! I am passionate about your birth and motherhood journey! You can find me over on IG teaching over 230k mamas daily. I am passionate about your birth and motherhood journey!
We make a small commission from some of the links (you don’t pay any more for using our links); however some of the recommendations, we do not earn anything; we love ’em and want you to know about them. Click here for our full disclosure. Thank you!
Very Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms: #1 Can't stay awake for anything!
Girl, every time I got pregnant, I knew it when I fell asleep at all the wrong times. I fell asleep in the back of my friend's car driving home at like six pm. This tiredness is like nothing you've ever felt. I like to say it's because you are building a little heart, and spine, and toes and all the other stuff.
Tips: Take your prenatal vitamins and naps. Do not turn to caffeine. You need to be cutting back on that stuff. The decrease in caffeine also contributes to the I can't get my butt up symptoms. Do some light exercise or continue what you were already doing.
Related Post: How to cope with Fatigue During Pregnancy
Related Post: Healthy Pregnancy Smoothies
Very Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms tip #2: Sensitive Boobs
I remember the day I was walking through the hall at work and this symptom made itself known. I had a labor patient who was getting ready to deliver, and I was rushing to get the room ready. I first noticed this crazy tingly feeling. Like ants in my boobs. Then someone bumped into my chest, and I felt like throat punching her. I remember thinking, what in the world? It was my first little inkling that Greyson was coming. Your breasts may become very sensitive. I mean like a million nerve endings on overdrive. This symptom starts around two weeks after conception and is due to the increasing progesterone. Breast sensitivity usually subsides but sometimes continues throughout your pregnancy. Tip: buy a supportive bra or sports bra with compression. The compression keeps those suckers from bouncing around. Do not wear a lace, lightweight one for the first few weeks. You will hate life.
Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms tip #3: Sensitivity to Smells
Another early sign that gives you no warning when it's about to start is what I like to call the radar nose. Lord have mercy, I swear if someone came into triage with their water broken, I could smell it. On the other hand, if they thought their water broke and were wrong, I knew darn well they peed in their pants. I was a human Amniotic fluid sensor. No one understands the science behind this phenomenon but everyone agrees that it is a symptom. It's also a real pain in you know what, when you are experiencing morning sickness. You may notice early on that your husbands deodorant makes you want to die. This is normal. It will pass. Tip: Grab some peppermint oil roller ball, Vicks vapor rub, or something to keep handy for when you smell something not so appealing. Here is a little insider secret from a nurse who smells some pretty stinky things. Take out your peppermint oil roller ball and dab a little under your nose. Then instead of detecting the sweaty guy in front of you at the grocery store, you can breathe a little peppermint.
Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms tip #4: Crazy Dreams
I'm sure but this is most likely due to the hormones going nuts inside of you. But let me tell you if you have had bizarre dreams before, nothing compares to the suckers you might have now. Like, Dr. Suess crazy. I had some downright nutso ones that made me wonder if I needed psychological help. Tip: The dreams usually simmer down when you give birth. (insert an emoji that portrays sorry, but it's real)
Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms tip #5: Insomnia
Basically, If you can't stay awake, then you sleep and have insane dreams or otherwise you can't sleep at all.
You lay down at night, and immediately have to pee. You finally get comfortable, and you have to puke. There are so many reasons why you might experience insomnia.
Tip: Do some bedtime preparations. Set up a routine and some calming techniques might help you relax and sleep. A nighttime ritual could look like this: a cup of chamomile tea, a relaxing playlist, and maybe a warm bath (no overly hot baths) Try out a sound machine and then use it for baby: Check out this Sound machine from Buy Buy Baby!
You may experience Acne. Yikes, it is so true. Be sure to wash your face and drink lots of water.
Cramping and Light Spotting
Cramping and the light spotting may occur around implantation time, which is about 8-9 days after implantation. The cramping can also occur as that uterus begins to grow.
Girl, this is one crazy sign of pregnancy that can begin early on. #weird #earlypregnancysigns
You might feel like hurting those you love. Resist and pray. That's all I got for that one!
You are going through a hormonal crisis girl. The increase and rush of hormones may cause intense headaches. Are you prone to migraines? If so, like me, you may have intense headaches. Talk to your provider about this sign. He may help!
Basal Body Temperature
If you are tracking your body temp and are pretty in tune to it, then keep an eye on it now. If you are pregnant it will not drop. In fact, it will stay elevated until the end of the first trimester.
You just might hate life if you get this symptom. Some women report that not only are their noses congested but also their ears.
Comment with the s/s you had during early pregnancy!