I was sitting on a park bench one day, enjoy the warm sunshine on my face when I thought, “I can’t remember when I had my last period.”
Here’s the thing: As a married, twenty-something woman, I was supposed to be stoked about the possibility of being pregnant, right?
Except I wasn’t.
I didn’t really want a baby right then, nor did I experience waves of joy at the thought of being a mother in the near future. But, at the same time, I didn’t NOT want a baby, either.
I felt conflicted.
I waited three more weeks before I took an at-home pregnancy test. It was as if putting off the test might change the results. Of course, that wasn’t true.
Am I Pregnant?
The possibility of being pregnant comes with a wide array of emotions. You may feel anything from bursting with joy to overwhelmed with fear and anxiety.
If you think you might be pregnant, the best thing to do is take a pregnancy test.
Yet, there may be legitimate reasons why you need to wait for those official results. Maybe it’s too soon to take an accurate test—you think you might be pregnant, but most tests say they aren’t accurate until a certain number of post-ovulation days. Maybe you don’t live near a drugstore or clinic and it’s not easy to get there. Maybe you have a child to take care of at home or don’t get paid until next Friday. Maybe you don’t want to know the results—denial feels better. For some women, a positive test would be devastating, while for others, another negative result is a deferred dream.
Whatever the reason for uncertainty, you may spend days or weeks inwardly chanting: what if...what if...what if...
Does Missing My Period Mean I’m Pregnant?
Pregnancy symptoms differ among women, and many of them can be explained by other causes.
The most obvious symptom is a missed period. Although nearly 30% of women surveyed by American Pregnancy Association reported a missed period as their first pregnancy symptom, the APA says this symptom is one of the easiest to explain away with another cause, which could be any of the following:
- Excessive weight gain or loss
- Fatigue or exhaustion
- Hormonal imbalance
- Tension and stress
- Change in birth control usage
- Various illnesses
Therefore, it’s important to understand the various signs of pregnancy and not rely on this one initial symptom.
The Most Common Early Signs of Pregnancy
In a poll on pregnancy symptoms conducted by the American Pregnancy Association:
Nausea or Morning Sickness
Nausea or morning sickness is the second most commonly reported early pregnancy symptom. Typically nausea shows up 2 to 8 weeks after conception. Nausea can be experienced with or without vomiting. Even though pregnancy nausea is frequently called morning sickness, it can actually be experienced at any time of the day. It usually occurs during the first trimester and subsides after that for most women. Some women, however, will experience nausea all throughout their pregnancies.
Like a missed period, nausea alone cannot determine if you are or are not pregnant. Many women never experience morning sickness with their pregnancies. Also, upset stomach symptoms can be caused by many other things.
Your breasts may be extra tender as early as a week or two after conception, making breast swelling or tenderness the third most common early symptom of pregnancy. The change is due to your body making extra estrogen and progesterone in early pregnancy. This hormone surge causes breasts to retain more fluid and feel heavy, sore, or more sensitive than normal PMS tenderness.
Spotting or Light bleeding
When a woman is pregnant, this symptom is usually caused by the embryo implanting to the uterine lining between 6 to 12 days after conception. You may experience spotting with some cramping. Many women don’t even notice implantation bleeding, so don’t worry if you’re trying to get pregnant and don’t experience these symptoms.
Additional Pregnancy Symptoms Include:
- Extra Tiredness and Fatigue
- Lower Backaches
- Frequent Urination
- Food Cravings
- Food Aversions
- Heightened Sensitivity to Smells
- Darkening of the Areolas
- Mood Swings
Additionally, just being generally uncomfortable is also a very common symptom.
The only way to ensure you are pregnant is to have a pregnancy test done. At A Woman’s Place Medical Clinic, we offer this service at no charge to our clients. We also provide limited obstetrical ultrasounds.
Schedule A Pregnancy Test
If you are sexually active and are experiencing some of these symptoms of pregnancy, then you should schedule a pregnancy test at A Woman’s Place Medical Clinic or a local health care provider.
Pregnancy tests work by measuring the levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a hormone that is produced by the placenta during pregnancy. If you have taken a home pregnancy test with positive results, it is important to consult a health care provider to receive a positive confirmation of pregnancy and discuss your pregnancy.
If a home pregnancy test is negative, it is important to consider that the test may show a false negative when taken too early. It is best to get confirmation of pregnancy from a medical professional.
A Woman’s Place Medical Clinic offers free medical grade tests that can detect pregnancy once you have missed your period. We can also provide you the medical documentation needed to apply for Pregnancy Medicaid or WIC.
Fearful Of An Unplanned Pregnancy?
At A Woman’s Place Medical Clinic, we understand the dynamics that accompany an unplanned pregnancy. If you would like to meet with someone who understands your situation and will offer you accurate information about abortion, parenting, and adoption in a confidential environment, we’re here for you.
We are ready to listen to your unique and personal concerns and address any issues that you would like to discuss.
You Have Options and Support
For clients who qualify, our Elevate Program is designed to provide support and encouragement in a safe and confidential environment for women who choose to parent. We are ready to listen and help you address issues that are important to you as you set personal goals to parent your baby.
For those clients who make an adoption plan, our clinics also offer ongoing support and education through our Elevate Program. Clients are partnered with an advocate who will walk through the pregnancy and adoption process and provide post-placement support.
You are not alone. Schedule your confidential appointment with us today.
WHY CHOOSE A WOMAN’S PLACE MEDICAL CLINIC
Early Pregnancy Symptoms: https://americanpregnancy.org/getting-pregnant/early-pregnancy-symptoms/
Pregnancy Symptom Alternatives: https://americanpregnancy.org/getting-pregnant/pregnancy-symptom-alternatives/
Prenatal Care at Breath of Life: https://breathoflife.cc/services/pregnancy-labor-birth/