Is it possible for pregnancy signs to start before the expected menstrual day?

(February 18, 2010)

The human body is a fascinating machine and a pregnancy is one example to prove it. During this phase, a woman’s body goes through numerous changes to accommodate the little being within her womb. These changes or signs of pregnancy usually set in from the time the baby, in its embryonic stage, implants itself to the wall of the uterus.

Pregnancy is directly linked with a woman’s menstrual cycle. Most women experience a menstrual cycle of 28 to 32 days. Ovulation normally takes place on the day exactly between two menstrual periods and this day and the 3 days prior to it are the most fertile days of the month for a woman. This phase is known as the fertile window. During this phase, after intercourse, the sperm travels into the uterus and towards the fallopian tubes. The egg is fertilized in the fallopian tube and then it gradually moves down into the uterus. This takes approximately a week. Once in the uterus, the embryo embeds itself in the uterine wall and this is when the baby starts drawing nutrition from the mother’s blood stream. This process also takes six-seven days. At this point, slight bleeding or spotting (not followed by a normal period) may be experienced as implantation takes place. This is the first sign of pregnancy that is experienced by most women. Once properly embedded, the little baby releases the hormone HCG (human chorionic gonadotrophin hormone) that enters the mother’s blood stream.

This hormone is responsible for the numerous pregnancy signs and changes that occur in the mother’s body. Hence, pregnancy signs are usually experienced two weeks after conception or around the same time as the next period would be due. Some women experience pregnancy signs at approximately six weeks of gestation as the HCG levels may be high enough to bring about visible changes at this stage. In unusual cases, the expectant mother may not go through any pregnancy signs. However, women who have been consciously trying to conceive, have an intuition that they are pregnant even before missing a period.

The most common symptoms of pregnancy are similar to those that signal the onset of a normal period – tender breasts, pain in the lower back and mood swings. Hence, many women do not realize that they are pregnant till they miss a period. Fatigue, nausea, vomiting, heartburn and constipation triggered by hormonal changes are other signs that indicate a pregnancy. An increase in the urge to urinate, food cravings and food aversions may follow.  

Submitted by P T on February 18, 2010 at 09:35

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