Congratulations on your early pregnancy! And if you're thinking about getting pregnant, we're excited for you too! We are glad you're a part of our community! Here are 5 of the more common symptoms that women worry about in their early pregnancy.
Fatigue is very common in the first trimester of pregnancy, and can start for some women as soon as they are pregnant! Fatigue is mostly caused by progesterone, the hormone which increases dramatically to help support the early pregnancy.
For most women, fatigue is like nothing they have ever felt before!! It is important to rest while you can if you have a toddler, figure out some games you can play while lying on the couch! It’s okay if you can’t get out to exercise like you normally can, now is a time to let your body adjust to all of the changes it is going through!
Do the best you can, most women start to get their energy back around 12 weeks of pregnancy, and their energy levels go back up to normal!
Progesterone causes Fatigue...and it can also contribute to the slowing of your gastrointestinal tract which leads to constipation and bloating!!!
Important things to help combat these symptoms include staying well hydrated, making sure you have adequate fibre intake (Metamucil or Benefiber are good options), movement - daily walks help to stimulate our bowels to get going as well! Caffeine (1-2 cups per day..no more) also helps to get our bowels moving!
Another option, if you are still struggling with constipation is something called PEG - also known as lax-a-day. This is totally safe to take in pregnancy, as it stays in the bowel. Some women use this daily in pregnancy and postpartum, and the goal is to aim for 1-2 soft bowel movements daily.
Breast Tenderness is a well-known symptom to many women, as we can get it cyclically during our menstrual cycle. In pregnancy it is present, and accompanied with enlargement in breasts even in the first trimester! This is very normal.
Go out and get a good supportive bra to help you during this time! Don’t spend too much money as your breast size will change postpartum and when you are done breastfeeding!
This is probably one of the toughest symptoms for women, and in some cases it can last through the entire pregnancy!!! We think it is as a result of the pregnancy hormone BHCG as it is often worse in twin pregnancies when there are higher levels. Ways to help combat it include:
Some vaginal bleeding can occur in up to ⅓ of all pregnancies, and although it can be very frightening for women, it leads to miscarriage less than 50% of the time. We do know how worrisome it can be for women to experience this, so we often do some investigations to make sure everything is moving ahead smoothly. What we do depends on your gestational age.
If you are less than 6 weeks pregnant, from your last menstrual period, we will order pregnancy hormone levels 48-72 hours apart. We expect this number to double. If you are over 6 weeks pregnant we will order an Ultrasound, to ensure that baby is well, and see if there is any obvious reason for the bleeding.
If you are over 10 weeks pregnant, we will often ask to see you in the office to listen to your baby’s heartbeat! There can be many reasons for spotting in early pregnancy, which can include intercourse, a small separation between your placenta and your uterus, and impending miscarriage, and sometimes we never get an answer! Pelvic rest (ie nothing in the vagina) is often recommended for a few days to make sure things settle down.