Pregnancy is a proud moment for any woman and should never be viewed as a burden nor accepted reluctantly. No doubt the pregnant woman has to pass through a totally novel experience in her life and there could be multiple problems in a primipara (the lady who is going to deliver a child for the very first time) but in a multipara, the problems are neither novel nor disturbing, for the simple reason that she is now an experienced lady who can weather any storm.
Common symptoms of pregnancy:
- Stoppage of menstrual flow - In medical terms this situation is referred to as Amenorrhoea. The most common cause of Amenorrhoea is pregnancy but it may also occur due to a few other reasons. Thus a missed period should not be taken as an absolute sign of pregnancy, but rather just as a raw indication. In exceptional cases, light periods may be present even up to sixth month or in rare cases they may occur throughout the pregnancy.
- Hardening of nipples and change in color of nipples and area around nipples (Areola) - At the onset of pregnancy the breast may become quite lumpy and sore to touch. Also the area around the nipples appears darker in color and may become tender and sensitive. This is mainly because when you conceive, there is a sudden influx of special hormones into the breast that prepare the body for producing milk.
- Occasional vomiting (though rare) and nausea (quite common) - This is the most traditional way to suspect pregnancy, but it’s the women's special intuitive feeling that can clearly distinguish between such vomiting and the vomiting due to any other reason. Nausea occurs mostly in the morning when one drinks a coffee or eats something on an empty stomach. This is also referred to as morning sickness although some women may experience nausea in the afternoon or even all day long. Nausea usually occurs due to low sugar levels in the blood.
- Frequent urination - You may experience the desire to urinate more frequently than before, although you may pass only a small quantity in each of your visits to the restroom. The probable reason is that the swelling uterus puts more pressure on the bladder, which results in such an activity. This sign of pregnancy may appear in the very first week after conception and may last till the last month.
- Pain in back and loins - Usually severe pain occurs in the lower back during pregnancy, due to the change in the body weight and posture. It may also occur due to lack of sound sleep and a few hormonal changes in the body. A maternity pillow is of great help in overcoming such pain.
- Dizziness and headache - Dizziness may sometimes be accompanied by fainting. Due to the changes that take place within the body during pregnancy, you may feel light-headed while climbing up stairs, standing in a queue or in a crowded place. The swelling of the uterus causes the arteries in the leg to compress which may drop the blood pressure and make you feel dizzy.
- Food craving and odd tastes - There is no scientific reason known for such cravings during pregnancy but it is thought to be the body's response toward certain mineral deficiencies. Each woman may experience a craving for a different food, but if the food is of low-nutritional value and high calorie content, it should be avoided.
All the above symptoms may not be experienced all together, but if majority of them are present, one may suspect pregnancy. Once you suspect pregnancy, you must immediately seek medical confirmation. A variety of tests are available for this purpose, most common being the blood test, urine test and internal examination. Upon receiving the positive result, you may spread the word and start preparation to welcome a healthy newborn.