It may seem like pregnant women are always talking about the symptoms they’re experiencing. It may seem like an exaggeration until it happens to you. Your body will go through many changes during this exciting time and very often, you’ll find yourself wondering if what you’re experiencing is normal. Of course, if you feel extremely unwell or a symptom really bothers you, you should contact your healthcare provider. But many times, you’re experiencing harmless symptoms that are quite common. Let’s look at some of them.
Contractions before your due date
This is the symptom that causes the most concern. No one likes the possibility that their little one could be coming into the world too early. Most of the time, what you’re experiencing are just Braxton Hicks contractions. They usually occur in the third trimester although they can also happen in the second trimester. These contractions tend to be uncomfortable rather than painful and they ease up rather than get worse like real labor pains. They can occur when you and the baby have been particularly active, if someone touches your belly or even when your bladder is full. Unlike generations of women before, you can monitor all your contractions with the help of technology like Bloomlife. This app comes with a sensor which you can attach to your stomach and monitor with your phone. It records even those contractions you can’t feel.
Fatigue and sleepiness or sleep problems
Sleepiness is extremely common during the early stages. It is due to the increased levels of progesterone and other pregnancy hormones. After the first trimester, your energy levels are likely to rise. If you feel your fatigue is severe, contact your doctor for advice. Insomnia may become a problem later in your pregnancy.
This gets more likely as your pregnancy progresses. As the uterus expands, it pushes on the veins which return blood from your legs. If you change position quickly or get up too suddenly, blood doesn’t get to your brain as quickly as it normally would. This can make you feel quite lightheaded.
Problems with digestion
At the start of your pregnancy nausea and vomiting may occur, often referred to as morning sickness. This may be due to increased HCG levels. These symptoms usually settle down in about 8 weeks. That’s often not the end of stomach problems though. During the late stages of pregnancy, your gastrointestinal tract tends to slow down. This can cause bloating and constipation. At the same time, progesterone causes the muscles in the esophagus to relax, leading to acid reflux and the accompanying discomfort. Your growing uterus also puts increased pressure on your stomach. No wonder you may be feeling uncomfortable after meals!
In the very early stages of pregnancy, your nipples and areola will become darker. Later in the journey, you may notice increased pigmentation in other areas of the body. The line that goes from your belly button to your pelvis is often affected. You may also see splotches of color on your cheeks and forehead.
Pregnancy is a joyous time but you may find it difficult to deal with all the changes. Try not to panic as symptoms come and go and your body starts to look different. Your doctor should be happy to answer any queries you may have.