Pulse of Oriental Medicine: Alternative Medicine That Works for Regular Folks
Early Symptom of Pregnancy










Brian Carter, acupuncturist, herbalist, and author
Brian B. Carter, MS, LAc
Founder, PulseMed.org

What's an Early Symptom of Pregnancy?
By Brian Benjamin Carter, MSci, LAc

Brian is the founder of the Pulse of Oriental Medicine. He teaches at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and maintains a private practice in San Diego, California, and is the author of Powerful Body, Peaceful Mind: How to Heal Yourself with Foods, Herbs, and Acupressure.

Also consider reading these related articles:

More important than any early symptom of pregnancy? A positive home pregnancy test. It's best to wait until at least the first day of a missed period before you take a pregnancy test.

(If it's negative, try the test again in a few days.) Once you've gotten a positive result, make an appointment with your medical practitioner.

Another early symptom of pregnancy is that your basal body temperature stays high. If you've been charting your basal body temperature and it has stayed over the coverline 18 days in a row, you're probably pregnant.

A missed period can be an early symptom of pregnancy.

Frequent urination can be an early symptom of pregnancy. During pregnancy, blood and other body fluids increase, which means your kidneys process more fluid whose final destination is your bladder.

Another early symptom of pregnancy is increased smell sensitivity. This may be a side effect of increasing estrogen levels in your system.

Food aversions can be an early symptom of pregnancy. Some women crave certain foods, but food aversions are more common during pregnancy.

Nausea or vomiting can be another early symptom of pregnancy. Morning sickness doesn't happen to most women until a month after conception. But some women start feeling queasy much sooner.

Another early symptom of pregnancy is implantation bleeding. The fertilized egg begins to burrow into the lining of your uterus about 6 days after fertilization. Sometime after this you might notice a small amount of red spotting or pink or reddish brown staining. Only a minority of women experience this so-called "implantation bleeding." (If you have pain along with spotting or bleeding, call your practitioner immediately as this can be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy.)

Fatigue can be an early symptom of pregnancy. Increased levels of progesterone plus the physical taxation of making a baby can be exhausting..

Tender, swollen breasts are another possible early symptom of pregnancy, also caused by increasing hormone levels.

Join the PulseMed mailing list

Some women experience a lot of early symptom of pregnancy; others have barely any. While an early symptom of pregnancy could be a hint that you are pregnant, it's not definite. In fact, some women experience one or more early symptom of pregnancy without being pregnant. There are a few who have all the symptoms without being pregnant. This is called "pseudocyesis," or imaginary pregnancy.

If you haven't missed your period and want to find out for sure, the most reliable way would be a blood test for the hormone hCG. Results come back in about 24 hours. hCG can be positive as early as 8 days after fertilization.

Home pregnancy tests can be positive as early as 10 days after fertilization - a couple of days before you miss your period. But occasionally there are false negatives (a negative test when you're pregnant) or false positives (a positive test when you're not pregnant). Or, you could have a "chemical pregnancy," which is a positive test without the development of a fetus. What's more, a negative urine test isn't absolute proof you aren't pregnant, because you may have become pregnant late in your cycle.

One to two weeks after the missed period (three to four weeks after fertilization) a transvaginal sonogram can confirm the presence of your fetus inside the uterus. Four to five weeks after fertilization (six to seven weeks after your last period) you should be able to see your fetus and its heartbeat.

Conventional Medicine Links

About The PULSE
All information herein provided is for educational use only and not meant to substitute for the advice of appropriate local experts and authorities.

Copyright 1999-2074, Pulse Media International, Brian Carter, MSci, LAc, Editor