What are the earliest signs of pregnancy?

You've probably seen television shows featuring women who are unaware of their pregnancies, and then unexpectedly give birth. These women probably misread some of the common signs of pregnancy as being symptoms of other things, especially if the tend to experience sporadic or light periods, which many women do in general.

Women should educate themselves so that the can recognize the signs of pregnancy. This is important for keeping both mom-to-be and baby healthy.

Morning sickness - You're probably aware that feeling sick in the morning is a telltale symptom of pregnancy, but you may not realize just how early nausea can start. According to the Mayo Clinic, you can begin felling sick as early as three weeks after conception, and some women may experience this nausea and assume that it's too soon for them to feel the effects of pregnancy. This sickness is the result of rapidly rising levels of estrogen and progesterone in your body. While morning sickness is a normal part of pregnancy, if you continue to feel sick well into your second or even third trimester, you should tell your doctor. 

Increased sense of smell - Have you always enjoyed the smell of your husband's cologne, but not want to gag whenever he sprays it? If so, then you might be pregnant. Your sense of smell is more sensitive while you're pregnant, which is also due to increased hormones. To combat this issue, you may have to make some small lifestyle changes by giving up certain foods for for the duration of your pregnancy calendar, and maybe even change your seat at work if your cubicle is near the kitchen.

Fatigue - SheKnows.com states that exhaustion tends to be worse in the first trimester of pregnancy than others. If you've been feeling particularly tired lately, to the point where you can barely keep your eyes open, you may want to grab a pregnancy test. 

Changes to your breasts - Although, it's common knowledge that breasts grow larger during the later stages of pregnancy, you may not know that there are other changes to your breasts that will occur very early on during pregnancy. For example, they may become tender and more sensitive than they usually are. This is an early symptom of pregnancy that can occur one to two weeks following conception. Along with having sensitive breasts, you may find that your nipples have become darker in color. This can be shocking if you're not expecting it, but it's perfectly normal for expectant mothers.

Feeling moody - Have you seemed a little overly emotional lately? Experiencing mood swings is common in the early stages of pregnancy due to hormone surges. You may feel incredibly happy or experience feelings of depression and anxiety. Either way, this is a normal early sign of pregnancy. 

It's important to remember that every pregnancy is different, and you may experience some, all or none of these symptoms. However, if you have been feeling any of these signs, you should purchase a home pregnancy test and make an appointment with your doctor. Also, you should abstain from engaging in activities that may harm a baby, like drinking alcohol or smoking cigarettes. 

What symptoms did you experience early on in your pregnancy? Are there any symptoms not listed here that your doctor told you to look out for? Discuss them here!