Symptoms of pregnancy: What happens right away
The earliest symptoms of pregnancy can appear in the first few weeks after conception. Here's what you may experience, from nausea and tender breasts to dizziness and mood swings.
Are you pregnant? The proof is in the pregnancy test. But even before you miss a period, you might suspect — or hope — that you're pregnant. For some women, early symptoms of pregnancy begin in the first few weeks after conception.
Classic symptoms of pregnancy
In addition to a missed period, the earliest symptoms of pregnancy might include:
Nausea with or without vomiting. Morning sickness, which can strike at any time of the day or night, sometimes begins as early as three weeks after conception. Nausea seems to stem at least in part from rapidly rising levels of estrogen and progesterone, which cause the stomach to empty more slowly. Pregnant women also have a heightened sense of smell, so various odors — such as foods cooking, perfume or cigarette smoke — might cause waves of nausea in early pregnancy.
Tender, swollen breasts. Your breasts might provide one of the first symptoms of pregnancy. As early as two to three weeks after conception, hormonal changes might make your breasts tender, tingly or sore. Or your breasts might feel fuller and heavier.
Increased urination. You might find yourself urinating more often than usual, especially at night.
Fatigue. Fatigue also ranks high among early symptoms of pregnancy. During early pregnancy, levels of the hormone progesterone soar — which can put you to sleep. At the same time, lower blood sugar levels, lower blood pressure and increased blood production might team up to sap your energy.
Food aversions or cravings. When you're pregnant, you might find yourself turning up your nose at certain foods, such as coffee or fried foods. Food cravings are common, too. Like most other symptoms of pregnancy, these food preferences can be chalked up to hormonal changes — especially in the first trimester, when hormonal changes are the most dramatic.