first response conception diaries

First Signs You're Pregnant

Wednesday, June 17, 2009
filed under: Conception Diaries

Nausea, food aversions, exhaustion. Congratulations! You're pregnant!

Pregnancy tester

How curious that a bundle of joy starts out with so much misery.

OK, maybe "misery" is too much drama. But discomfort can certainly describe the early days and weeks -- and often, months -- of pregnancy. "The most reliable early pregnancy symptom is intense fatigue," says Dr. Suzanne Gilberg-Lenz, an OB/GYN and momlogic advisory board member.

"Your whole body is just soooo tired," she says. "When I was pregnant, I remember coming home from work and sitting on the couch and literally feeling like I could not get up off that couch."

Early pregnancy symptoms vary from woman to woman, and Dr. Gilberg-Lenz reminds us that you may have one, a few, or all of these symptoms. Here is her short list:

* Fatigue
* Breast tenderness
* Food aversions
* Nausea
* Smell aversions
* New, often strange eating patterns
* Headaches
* Sleep disruption
* Moodiness
* Frequent urination

"One myth is that everyone will get morning sickness," says Dr. Gilberg-Lenz. "Some people don't ever experience nausea and, for those who do, the vomiting might start in the afternoon or evening. And, it may not end in the first trimester."

Dr. Gilberg-Lenz explains that your hormones dictate a lot of the early pregnancy symptoms, such as the sleep disruption. And the typical gastrointestinal details? "You get the classic food cravings, but you may also find that food you normally love may completely gross you out. Or, people's personal odors that you never noticed before may totally offend you."

Dr. Gilberg-Lenz adds that it's important to talk to your friends, family, and partner about these new sensations and feelings. "You don't want to feel bad if your partner's smell suddenly makes you vomit," she says. "When I was pregnant, not only could I not smell or see chicken, I had to tell people not to say the word 'chicken' around me. I was on a phone call while working at the hospital and a friend said 'So how's the chicken thing?' and I had to run to a sink!"



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