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Symptoms from A to Z First trimester

In the first three months of pregnancy, many changes happen to your body.

Not all of these symptoms are pleasant - some could be called complaints. These are some common symptoms during the first three months - keep in mind you don’t have to have all of them, and that you might have some that are not on the list. Some symptoms will get better as pregnancy progresses, some will stay the same.

- Bleeding or spotting is normal in early pregnancy, especially when the embryo implants in the lining of your uterus (around week 3 or 4). Seeing a small amount of blood, usually in streaks, is normal around the time when your period would be due,  too. Remember, this is your blood, not your baby’s, and it’s normal to have this spotting in the first trimester.
- Breast and nipple tenderness begins early on, as a result of hormonal changes. Sometimes even shower water can make them hurt.

-Cramping happens as your uterus grows and stretches around to your growing baby, or around the time you are supposed to have your period. As long as cramping doesn’t include heavy bleeding, extreme pain or sharp pain on one side of your belly, it’s normal.
 -Cravings are real! Suddenly you want to eat certain things, and avoid others. Eat what you like, just make sure that you don’t use cravings as an excuse to overeat.
- Feeling tired happens because of hormonal changes and can range from yawning to feeling downright exhausted. Your body is busy growing a new human and you might need to take a nap during the day, or get to bed earlier.
- Nausea is normal in the first trimester, and it’s helpful to learn what your triggers are - getting up too fast, being hungry and travelling are some. Eating regularly can also help.
- Smelling… everything is another typical pregnancy symptom. Strong spices, perfume, foods, all of these can suddenly drive you crazy perhaps trigger your nausea. Avoid strong smells as much as possible, and think about carrying a pouch of lavender or peppermint with you - both of these can help calm your sense of smell.
- Runny nose or rhinitis is normal throughout pregnancy because of increased blood flow to your sinuses (remember, you’re breathing for two!). It’s also normal to see blood on tissues when blowing your nose, for the same reason - extra blood flow to your sinuses makes your capillaries more sensitive and they can bleed more often. Saline solution can help alleviate symptoms but they can persist until birth.
- Feeling like urinating all the time happens because of increased blood flow to your pelvis. If you feel burning or pain while peeing, tell your midwife or doctor.
- Vaginal mucous increases because of hormonal changes, and it may mean that you start wearing a light panty liner regularly. It is important not to use any vaginal cleaning products or strong soaps when washing, as these can be irritating and harmful. As long as the mucus is clear or creamy-coloured and smells normal, it’s ok. If it changes colour to yellow or green or becomes foul smelling, call your midwife or doctor.