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Signs of Pregnancy

December 23rd, 2010 by – Sue Barton

  What are the signs of pregnancy? 

The first sign of pregnancy is a missed menstrual period.  In women who may have irregular periods this sign is not as quickly noticed as it is for the woman whose periods are predictable.  In addition to the absence of menstruation, women often notice breast tenderness, nipple changes, feelings of fatigue, and nausea or morning sickness.  Spotting may occur with implantation, and there may be urinary frequency.  Some women may have headaches, backaches, and food cravings.  As the pregnancy progresses weight gain occurs and movement is felt.  Long before then most women have confirmed their pregnancy with either a home test or visit to their health care provider. 

 The American College of Nurse Midwives has a website with tips on relief for many of the common discomforts of pregnancy, and can direct you to other helpful information for yourself or your patients.  Getting started early with prenatal care is important.  Nurses play a critical role in educating pregnant women about nutrition, screening for potential complications, providing childbirth education, and providing emotional support.

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