June 17, 2011

Signs of Pregnancy

pregnancyPregnancy is perhaps the most happening period of a woman’s entire lifetime. Every woman can ‘feel’ that she is pregnant. It comes from sheer nature of motherhood. However, one should know some probable and some definitive signs of pregnancy. It will help them across their path. Understanding the signs of pregnancy is vital because some of them may reciprocate some other diseases.

One of the earliest signs of pregnancy is a delayed or missed cycle of menstruation. Any woman who is having a regular menstrual period and her due date is over for 5-7 days can expect pregnancy, if she had unprotected sex.

Spotting of blood is also another early sign. About 5-10 days after conception, some women can notice a little amount of blood along with cramping pain. This occurs as the embryo implants itself with the uterine wall. So, it is also called ‘implantation bleeding’.

Tenderness or pain in both the breasts is common for a lady who has conceived 1-2 weeks before. It occurs due to increase in the hormonal level in blood.

The size of the areola is increased in a pregnant lady. The color of the areola also darkens from the non-pregnant state. ‘Montgomery’s tubercle’ is a goose bump like projection in the areola. Appearance of such tubercles are very much common.

A pregnant lady always feels nauseating in the morning hours. It is again more prominent in the ladies conceiving for the first time. This is also called ‘Morning Sickness’.

The size of the breast enlarges. The fatty tissues and the milk glands proliferate in order to produce milk. But due to increased level of hormone (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin – HCG) in blood, milk is not produced.

HCG is also responsible for frequent urination in a pregnant lady.

High level of Progesterone can be a cause of easy fatigue. It is more obvious in primi patients (ladies conceiving for the first time).

There is marked reduction in libido. A sexually active lady will not find it more exciting.

Increase in the frequency of urination is also noticed. HCG is again the main reason for this increase frequency.

Another distinguishable characteristic of early pregnancy is altered sense of taste. Some may complain of intense metallic taste while taking any kind of food. It is also noticed that there is craving for unusual food like earthen pots and old foods. This nature is termed as ‘Pica’.

Skin color and texture is changed from the original state in a pregnant lady. Skin shows more glow than ever before. Stretch marks start appearing over the lower part of the abdomen. In the later stages of pregnancy, a linear dark line appears from umbilicus to the perineum, called ‘Linea Nigra’. The size of abdomen starts increasing. Although there is no apparent bulging in the lower part of abdomen till 12 week of pregnancy.

First time mothers sometimes feel intense headache and heartburn. This is again due to alteration in the hormonal level.

One can feel the movement of the growing baby during the later days of pregnancy. A white colored discharge (colostrums) from the breast is also very common.

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