Early signs and symptoms of pregnancy

How do you know if you're pregnant? The most common first sign of pregnancy is a missed period. Find out what else to look for

Every pregnancy is different so if you don't have any of these early signs, don't worry. If you notice one or more of these symptoms, take a pregnancy test.

Your period is late

This is a classic sign of pregnancy. If your period is late, take a pregnancy test to check whether you are pregnant.

You can keep track of your period by marking the days in a calendar or by using an app.

Cramps

About eight to ten days after ovulation, you might have some cramps in your lower tummy. You may also have a slight pink, red or brown staining around the time you expect your period. This is known as implantation bleeding and is caused by the fertilised egg settling into the lining of your womb.

‘I thought I'd had a period when I'd actually missed it and it was cramps/spotting.’ Tanya, mum-to-be

Deep tiredness

Even though your baby is still smaller than a peanut, the first few weeks of pregnancy can be draining, both physically and emotionally. You may have extreme tiredness, caused by changes in your body.

Early pregnancy tiredness is not like ordinary tiredness - you may feel completely exhausted after a normal day's activities. The best way to deal with this symptom is to listen to your body and get more rest.

Breast tenderness

Some women have breast tenderness or a tingly feeling in their breasts during the early weeks of pregnancy. The skin around your nipples may look bumpier than usual, too. These bumps are called 'Montgomery's tubercules' and they secrete an oily fluid to prepare your nipples for breastfeeding.

Your breasts may also feel heavier. Many of these symptoms are because of the extra hormones that you have in your body during pregnancy.

Funny taste in your mouth

Have you suddenly gone off your favourite food or do you have a strange metallic taste in your mouth? These are signs of early pregnancy. Some women also complain about having too much saliva.

Some women also report being more sensitive to smells

Need to wee more often

In early pregnancy you may need to pass urine more often than usual because your womb is expanding and pressing on your bladder.

The hormone progesterone also makes you need to wee more, as well as sometimes causing constipation.

Feeling nauseous and/or being sick

New pregnancy hormones are flooding your body and, for some women, the reaction to this is to feel sick. Some women feel slightly queasy and others may actually be sick. This is commonly known as morning sickness but it can happen at any time of the day.

You might be more sensitive to smells, including food and cooking.

If you can’t keep any food or water down talk to to your midwife or GP because there is a risk that you may become dehydrated.

Cravings

Not all mums-to-be will get strange cravings but hormonal changes can trigger them in some women.

Mood swings

Hormones are natural chemicals that help your body manage your pregnancy, prepare it for the birth and help produce milk for your baby. The hormones oestrogen and progesterone flood your body in the first 12 weeks. It is these hormones that can also make you feel more emotional than normal.

You may find that you are laughing one minute, then crying the next. Don’t worry, this is normal.

Pregnancy brings anxieties and stresses as well as happiness. However, if you are a feeling down or anxious for a large part of the day and it seems to be lasting longer than a couple of weeks it is important that you talk to your midwife or GP about how you are feeling.

The much talked about glow of happiness can actually make women who are not feeling this very isolated. It is common to feel stress and anxiety in pregnancy and you need to keep an eye on your emotional well-being as well as your physical well-being.

Download our Wellbeing Plan [PDF] to help you talk to your midwife about this.

Other symptoms

The symptoms above are just some of the most common but there are many others. Your pregnancy will be unique to you and your symptoms might be too. If you’re trying to get pregnant, listen to your body and look out for any changes.

‘One of my earliest signs is a rumbling tummy and feeling constantly hungry!’ Clio, mum of two

What to do next

If you’re experiencing one or more of the symptoms above, take a pregnancy test. However, if you haven’t missed a period yet it may be too early to tell, or your test result may be inaccurate.

Positive pregnancy test

If you have done a test and it was positive, read about the five things to do when you find out you’re pregnant.

Negative pregnancy test

A negative result might not be reliable if you took it too soon.

If you do a home test very early and have a negative result, do another test in two to three days' time if you still haven't had your period. If you continue to get negative results and still don't have a period, talk to your doctor.

Getting pregnant can take longer than you were expecting. Find out how conception works.

Read more about early pregnancy

  • Profile of pregnant woman drawn in chalk on black board.

    Dos and don'ts for a safer pregnancy

    Congratulations on your pregnancy! This page covers the evidence-based recommendations from midwives of things to do and not do in pregnancy

  • Pregnant woman visiting a health professional

    Check how healthy you are

    Find out how healthy you are with our simple calculator tools and see what changes you can make to help you have a healthier pregnancy.

  • A woman sat on her bed corss-legged with her eyes closed and her head in her hands. She looks worried.

    First trimester worries

    Smoking, drinking, folic acid and miscarriage. Get answers to some of the common worries in the first trimester of pregnancy

  • Young woman yawning

    First trimester trials

    Nausea, extreme tiredness, sore breasts, cramps... the first trimester is not always easy. Here’s some advice to get you through the first 12 weeks.

  • The words 'myths' and 'facts' written on a blackboard

    10 pregnancy myths

    You don’t need to kick your caffeine habit completely. Flying is fine. And sex actually gets better (for some). The truth behind 10 of the most misunderstood pregnancy myths.

  • Endometriosis and pregnancy

    10 common pregnancy complaints

    You may have heard about morning sickness and extreme tiredness, but what about these other common but less talked about pregnancy symptoms.

  • Woman having blood pressure checked by nurse.

    The booking appointment

    Your first antenatal appointment with a midwife is called a 'booking' visit and will take longer than later visits.

  • A woman wearing a yellow jumper bending over a sink and holding her mouth

    Morning sickness relief - information and support

    It's very common to feel sick during the first few months of pregnancy, and sometimes for a bit longer.

Sources

  1. NHS Choices, 'Tiredness in pregnancy'http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/tiredness-sleep-pregnant.aspx [accessed 29.03.18]
  2. NHS choices, 'Signs and symptoms of pregnancy': http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/signs-and-symptoms... 10/04/2018] 
  3. NHS Choices, 'Severe vomiting in pregnancy': http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/severe-vomiting-in... 10/04/2018]
  4. NICE (2014), 'Antenatal and postnatal mental health:clinical management and service guidance'; 1.5.4: http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg192/chapter/1-recommendations#recognis...
  5. Royal College of Psychiatrists, Mental health in pregnancy, London RCP, 2015: http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/mentalhealthinpr...[accessed 10/04/2018]
  6. NHS Choices, 'How soon can I do a pregnancy test?': http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/948.aspx?CategoryID=54&SubCategoryID=140 [accessed 10/04/2018]
Hide details

    Last reviewed on April 10th, 2018. Next review date April 10th, 2021.

    Was this information useful?

    Yes No

    Comments

    Please note that these comments are monitored but not answered by Tommy’s. Please call your GP or maternity unit if you have concerns about your health or your baby’s health.
    • By I am (not verified) on 15 Jul 2020 - 10:55

      My last period delayed with 2 day which supposed to be 28 of june
      but it came on 30th of june 2020 after and lasted for 5 days which it stopped on 4th of July2020 and I had unprotected sex a day after my for 4 day, so since on 11of July 2020 now I have been seeing some lights blood discharge, feeling tired, felling throw up, craping and Brest tenderness. I have tried home pregnancy test but it came out negative . Please am I pregnant?

    • By Joy (not verified) on 11 Jul 2020 - 00:32

      heavy period the first day and light period the next 2days, full breast and feeling of butterfly in my stomach.

    • By Tracey (not verified) on 20 Jun 2020 - 21:11

      I have a period on 15th of each month but I haven't had a period this month yet . My boobs are sore and swollen and feel sick would different smells of food and tired and one minute I am crying and another minute I am snappy. I am not great with pregnant test and I don't have anough hormones in my urine.

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 3 Jun 2020 - 08:00

      I saw my period on the 25 of April and up til na have not seen it

    • By Sally (not verified) on 2 Jun 2020 - 13:34

      Hi i have beem of the depro shot for 5 months with no period but i have been feeling some nausea and had massive heartburn for the past 2 days.... Can it be possible that i can be preggies

    • By Ruthy (not verified) on 28 May 2020 - 19:02

      Hi, I have been sexually active with my husband before, during and after ovulation, I had my period on 26 instead of 28 of this month and it lasted for 2 days, I have been having all the symptoms of pregnancy. I did the urine test on 28th of this month but It came out negative. What do I do?

    • By Maria (not verified) on 25 May 2020 - 05:37

      My period is now 10 days late, i am now spotting but it’s a light brown and I’ve been feeling cramps, having headaches feeling nauseous but I haven’t threw up. My boobs started to feel tender. I’ve been having mood swings like I would be happy and next minute I’m either sad or having an attitude. I’m worriedd..

    • By Georgie (not verified) on 18 May 2020 - 12:19

      I missed my period 4 days then i started bleeding it was really light red with alittle brown and that lasted 2 days and my stomach feels really bloated all the time im hungry alot and belly growling feeling sick most the day and when cooking back pains and peein alot i have took a pg test but it came up negitive so am i pregnant? Plz reply

    • By Rebecca (not verified) on 12 May 2020 - 22:35

      sometimes l feel like vomiting but it will nt comes out .also l have nt get my menstrant for two months.am now on my third month still l have nt get it.pls help me to find out if am pregnant

    • By Lynnette (not verified) on 10 May 2020 - 16:13

      Hi I've not had a period in 3 months I took a pregnancy test and it was negative and I took another one it's still the same am I pregnant

    • By Lynnette (not verified) on 10 May 2020 - 16:09

      Hi I've not had a period in 3 months I took a pregnancy test and it was negative and I took another one it's still the same am I pregnant

    • By Semple (not verified) on 7 May 2020 - 13:48

      i miss money period last month and this month I started to pass spot of blood.i will feel really bad from midday to night fall I spit a lot and have craving for thing I never eat before. and my test was negative

    • By Maryan (not verified) on 23 Apr 2020 - 17:12

      After my period I started having sex with my hubby but now I am feeling dizing ,abdomal pain much saliver can it be that I am pregnant

    • By Oyedun (not verified) on 22 Apr 2020 - 10:02

      I don't know if am pregnant because I've been having sore breast, feeling tired, sleeps alot and cramps.... But I did pg test it showed negative

    • By Rose nick (not verified) on 17 Apr 2020 - 14:43

      Hi
      I had my period 25th of March 2020, I had sex that same day infact I had sex continually evening till yesterday but I'm having some movement around my novel and my breast is very heavy and sleep all the time. I did a urine test last week and even yesterday but it shows negative. I don't know what else to do.could I possibly be pregnant

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 17 Apr 2020 - 14:39

      Hi
      I had my period 25th of March 2020, I had sex that same day infact I had sex continually evening till yesterday but I'm having some movement around my novel and my breast is very heavy and sleep all the time. I did a urine test last week and even yesterday but it shows negative. I don't know what else to do.could I possibly be pregnant

    • By Joice idriss (not verified) on 14 Mar 2020 - 10:07

      Missed period,cramps,breast pain,tiredness,much saliva

    • By Starleigh Atwill (not verified) on 19 May 2020 - 20:08

      Hi I don't know if any pregnant but I am all tried and I got moody swing and cant stop wee and my wee is smell funnie and it yellow and my belly keep get bigger and bigger

    • By Nono (not verified) on 20 May 2020 - 10:59

      Assist can you test pregnancy if you left with 1day to period

    • By Mari (not verified) on 23 Jan 2020 - 04:04

      I had sex on my menstrual this month January 2020 and for three days straight I been feeling really dizzy and tired and hungry and feel like I’m about to faint. I have not done a pg test. Could I be pregnant for having sex on my period. I did have a little cramping on my right side of ovary. Wat do u think.

    • By Felicia (not verified) on 27 Dec 2019 - 05:55

      I was spotting between October and November and I had unprotected sex a few times with my friend and every since then I have been feeling weird and sleeping more. So could that mean I’m pregnant because they say you can get pregnant while on the shot?

    • By Chidinma favour (not verified) on 6 Dec 2019 - 13:31

      I saw my period last month 16th to 21st of November this year then on the 27th of this same month I nd my guy feeled each didn't really had sex with him and since then have been feeling strange movement inside my body feverish don't know if am pregnant also didn't know if he realised inside of me though he realised want to know if am pregnant

    • By Mary (not verified) on 17 Apr 2020 - 08:25

      Want to know if I may be pregnant

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 18 Nov 2019 - 07:48

      It's 8 days no period

    • By Aisha (not verified) on 10 Jun 2020 - 16:35

      I’m not a doctor or anything but if its been 8 days I would take a test update us on your results!

    • By afycso (not verified) on 6 Nov 2019 - 17:31

      I spotted twice the last month and my right boob has become a sensitive. I'm not sure if those are signs that I am but does anyone know if they are signs? This is my first time experiencing all of this but I have spotted before but I wasn't pregnant at that time.

    • By Elizabeth (not verified) on 31 Oct 2019 - 05:18

      During September I had a small amount of blood flow during menstruation,and usually I see my period around 24 until 28,but this time it is different I haven't seen my period ,my breasts have grown too much,when I press the breasts I see milk,and my breasts are always painful,I sleep too much than before,I have cravings,but I took a pregnancy test it says negative,could I be pregnant

    • By Mercy (not verified) on 17 Oct 2019 - 06:14

      I missed my period last month for 10 days and I had to take abortion pills and bleeding started the next day but messed up with my hubby on my third day of bleeding but am experiencing vomiting,nusea,growling stomach and my breasts are not even tender nor heavy.could I be pregnant?

    • By Angeline (not verified) on 26 Sep 2019 - 23:55

      I normally have 7 days periots but this month wam 2 days only and it was a light blood am I pregnant

    • By Adriana (not verified) on 20 May 2020 - 03:37

      Were you pregnant? I’m experiencing the same my period was only 2 days and I had some cramps and light spotting when I wiped about a week and a half before my period. Now I’m still cramping and am very tired and don’t have much motivation. Negative pregnancy test. I’m lost!

    • By Courtney (not verified) on 23 Sep 2019 - 08:23

      My period is always on time and goes for 4 days this month's my breasts were very sore to the point we're I couldn't sleep my period started two days late and was extremely light it stopped three days later and then started the next day and went for four days it was pink in colour and very light now I have a egg white discharge which I have never had before I'm extremely tired, and have a tingling pulling feeling in my stomach, and I am extremely moody more then usual I get headaches everyday and I feel like I want to vomit half way threw the day...

    • By Zoë (not verified) on 25 Sep 2019 - 19:50

      Have you took a test?
      I feel the same but I’ve had no period

    • By Lerato (not verified) on 23 Sep 2019 - 00:43

      It is my first time missing my periods.....its been a week nou without seeing my periods....am so stressed don't even know wat to do.....am even scared to take a pregnancy test......u still have a hope that I will see my periods......I eat a lot this days,always sleeping......wake up during the night hungry....Can I Get Help Of What To Do...

    • By BUSI (not verified) on 17 Sep 2019 - 17:37

      I had my period on the 2nd till 4th August,then again on the 25th till 29th August,now I'm peeing slot and my breasts are itching, what's happening?

    • By Adegbesan Ade (not verified) on 14 Sep 2019 - 03:42

      I had my period on 14-16August, i saw the next on 10& 11 normal flow but dark spotting on 12&13th but before then i do feel cramps on my left abdomen towards the back and my legs but now I'm feeling it more still on my left side and sometimes on the right side and some movement in my tommy, no symptoms but just tiredness and lost mm of appetite for food, the pt test reads negative please help

    • By Tope (not verified) on 13 Sep 2019 - 06:23

      I did my last period on 4 of august and up till now have not seen it though I have an unprotected sex but I notice a brownish red stain on 12of September in the morning and I also saw the brownish red this morning and it disappear with abdominal pain and I also discover that my nipple are paining me and also feeling tired

    • By Lo! (not verified) on 20 Sep 2019 - 16:25

      Give it another week and take a pregnancy test. You could potentially be expecting. The spotting could’ve been implantation bleeding. I’m no doctor though, let me know.

    • By Princess (not verified) on 12 Sep 2019 - 08:17

      I have a problem last month My periods changed it was spotting for four days after that I was having back pains ,headache My breasts was big but not sore now they are flat a gain and I have pains in My cervix I took a pregnant test the was 1 pink line and the other was white I wait two weeks I took another one they were 2 lines 1 pink the other was faint I took the 3rd one it shows 2 line but still the other line was faint I go to the clinic I explained they test me it came out Negative I showed the Nurse the other test she said maybe its too early I must take again after 7 days I couldn't wait only 2 day's i buy clear blue cause I've already missed My period from this month it was supposed to be on the 10th but still nothing so I took clear blue yesterday it's Say's Not pregnant Am I pregnant or Not?

    • By Sanah (not verified) on 9 Sep 2019 - 16:19

      I would like to ask if there's possibility i might be pregnant after i had an unprotected sex, and suddenly my mouth is always filled with saliva, im lazy n tired lately. I eat too much and my moods change often

    • By Linus Maryanne (not verified) on 9 Sep 2019 - 00:02

      Had my period started on 24th August to 28thaugust 2019. Had unprotected sex with my hubby on31st August. I've been feeling nausea, slight pain on my lower abdomen which is on n off. Today been 8th September, is d 16th day after my period. No sign of ovulation also normal Virgina discharge isn't much this month after my period. What could be of help. Advice plssss.

    • By Sanah (not verified) on 4 Sep 2019 - 09:07

      I had unprotected sex 3days ago, and im feeling weird, my mouth is full of saliva, n my tummy its like I'm gonna throw out, i don't know what to think, or say what is wrong with me.

    • By Finlay (not verified) on 28 Aug 2019 - 23:16

      I have light cramps and feeling waves of sickness and smells making me borky but I am not due period for another week. Have a metallic taste in mouth also. We are trying to conceive and I think I might be just being hopeful. How early after fertilisation can you feel the above symptoms?

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 9 Sep 2019 - 20:59

      Update I am now 3 days late for my period and trying not to get too excited

    • By Ngozi (not verified) on 14 Oct 2019 - 16:35

      My breast is heavy and painful I been sick for 2weeks now.

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 24 Oct 2019 - 03:56

      Get a pregnancy test

    • By Natasha (not verified) on 25 Aug 2019 - 20:44

      I had sex a day to my period that was on the 5 of august and I also had sex on the 16 of same month....have been having abdominal cramp and my breast is itching me....am I pregnant?

    • By Hannah (not verified) on 6 Feb 2020 - 15:54

      I had sex d nyt my period stops DT was 2-2-20 I ave been salivating and dts my first pregnancy symptom no cramps BT am sick,feverish having smelly discharge urinating more often getting hungry,rumbling stomach and constipation I got tested and its negative I just stopped my son from breastfeeding am having pains on ma breast.I want to know if am pregnant again pls.

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 23 Aug 2019 - 23:14

      I had mild cramps in my sleep, not painful but so irritating it could wake me up out of my sleep, I knew it wasn't my period but it felt like how it feels when my period is just about to start. I used the restroom and I had light bleeding TMI but It lasted 2 days and My Period is 2 weeks away. Ive been trying to conceive but I don't want to get my hopes up. I need help!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • By Happy (not verified) on 14 Aug 2019 - 21:38

      I have symptoms of pregnancy like pain on my napples and slight milk from it and right abdomen pain and discomfort but my test results are negative

    • By carol (not verified) on 13 Aug 2019 - 08:58

      had my periods on 2nd,3rd,4th and 5th july....on 19th had sex with my hubby,on 20th i took an emergency pill-choice 72.....was expecting my periods on 6th augustbut they haven't.on 11th,12th and 13th august i experienced light spotting or is it bleeding in the early hours which is barely 4drops of blood....could i be pregnant?

    • Pages

    Add new comment