First Trimester Pregnancy Symptoms Explained

First trimester pregnancy symptoms are relatively well known to the general public, or at least some of them are. Nausea and vomiting may be the most familiar symptoms thanks to movies and television shows that feature characters sprinting to the bathroom when a wave hits during those first few weeks of pregnancy.

In reality, first trimester symptoms can vary widely from one woman to the next. At Pacific Women’s OB/GYN Medical Group (PWOG), we hope to offer a better explanation of first trimester pregnancy symptoms to help patients understand what they may experience.

Nausea and vomiting
These are highly common symptoms, but women can experience them differently. For some women, feeling nauseous will not include actual vomiting, whereas others will experience both. If your symptoms are severe, you should contact your PWOG provider to ensure that an underlying issue is not present and to review options to relieve symptoms. Most women find relief in eating small meals throughout the day, drinking beverages with ginger, staying hydrated with water and wearing loose-fitting clothing with layers to address the risk of overheating when nauseous.

Frequent urination
Because the amount of blood in a woman’s body increases during pregnancy, the kidneys will process more fluid than normal, and the excess will enter the bladder.

Hormones from pregnancy can cause stomach acid to leak into your esophagus and cause heartburn. You should consult your doctor regarding medications to take to relieve symptoms from heartburn, especially if it becomes severe or interrupts your daily routine. Avoiding citrus, chocolate, and fried or spicy food can also help.

Once again, high levels of pregnancy hormones can cause issues, including for the digestive system. Staying hydrated with regular (pregnancy-appropriate) physical activity can help, and your PWOG provider can offer advice as to whether supplements or medication would be best to relieve constipation in your situation.

Fatigue is common throughout pregnancy but can strike with particular intensity during the first trimester. Women can experience “surges” of the hormone progesterone, which can make them feel tired, if not very sleepy. Pregnant women are encouraged to rest and not push/force themselves to be active in times of heavy fatigue, but if you find that you are unable to achieve adequate rest to feel refreshed, please contact your provider.

Quick links from PWOG on pregnancy:
Learn about your first obstetrics visit with PWOG here.
Learn about the important symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy here.
Questions? Request an appointment with PWOG here.

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