Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms

Am I pregnant?

The earliest sign of pregnancy is a missed period. If you are wondering if you are pregnant there are other early symptoms to look for including nausea, tender or swollen breasts, darkening of the areola (the area around the nipple), cramping, back pain, headaches, increased urination, food cravings or aversions to certain foods, sensitivity to smells, and fatigue.

“A lot of times the symptoms can be mistaken for the beginning of a period,” said Maggie Hawkins, Nurse Sonographer for Real Options|Obria Medical Clinics. “A lot of women, at the beginning of their period will get things like backache, tender breast or a headache so they may think it is just their period coming on.”

Every woman is unique and will have different reactions to early pregnancy. “It is all about your hormone levels and the way your body responds to those hormones,” said Hawkins.  “Some women will get very nauseated right off the bat as soon as implantation occurs which is about when they are four weeks along or two weeks after conception. Other women won’t get nauseated at all, nor have any other symptoms, and this can be confusing for a woman to know how far along they are in their pregnancy.”

What is my next step?

“If a woman suspects that she is pregnant then she can take a home pregnancy test or come into a clinic like Real Options|Obria Medical Clinics for a pregnancy test.” Hawkins continued.  “We recommend waiting until after you have missed your period. When pregnancy testing is screened too early a false negative result can occur because the HCG pregnancy hormone levels are not high enough at that point.”

While home pregnancy test are advertised as being 99% accurate there is a chance of human error when using them. The primary reason a clinical pregnancy test is more accurate than an over the counter test is the experience and frequency in which the clinic administers tests.   RealOptions|Obria Medical Clinics have given thousands of tests and are continually completing quality control checks for optimum freshness and accuracy.

There is no reason for you to face this on your own. “Just talking to a nurse about what is normal is a big help. ‘Dr. Internet’ can kind of make a woman freak out. You can read about certain symptoms on line as being a sign of something really negative,” said Hawkins. “When you talk to somebody who is a medical professional, you can sort through all the information, and see what is normal from what is not. If you are undecided, talking it through earlier rather than later is always beneficial. Then we can set you up for an ultrasound to confirm the viability of your pregnancy. You can come in right away and receive the earliest information possible in order to make a truly informed decision.”

Real Options offers pregnancy tests and so much more.

“It can be a very confusing time for women and it is a big life change, and on top of that your body is going through a natural hormone shift so it can be very hard to sort through all of that on your own. That is why it is really a great thing to have someone to talk to who is knowledgeable about pregnancy,” said Hawkins. “The nurses, nurse practitioners, and also the advocates at Real Options will help you relax as you become better informed about what is going on in your body. If you are feeling these symptoms right now and can’t think clearly about what you want to do, talking with a medical professional will help answer your questions and leave the path clear for you to really think through your emotions.” If you have missed a period and think you might be pregnant, call or schedule an appointment online.

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