Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms

Q1. What are the signs and symptoms of pregnancy?

A 1. Pregnancy symptoms differ from woman to woman and pregnancy to pregnancy. Understanding the signs and symptoms of pregnancy is important because each symptom may be related to something other than pregnancy.
Some women experience pregnancy signs or symptoms of pregnancy within a week of conception. For other women, pregnancy symptoms may develop over a few weeks or may not be present at all. Below is a listing of some of the most common pregnancy signs symptoms. If you have been sexually active and are experiencing any of the following symptoms it is recommended to take a pregnancy. The follow signs can help determine if you might be pregnant:

  • Implantation Bleeding
  • Delay/Difference in Menstruation
  • Swollen/Tender Breasts
  • Fatigue/Tiredness
  • Frequent Urination
  • Nausea/Morning Sickness
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness 

However, these signs and symptoms are not exclusive to pregnancy. They could indicate that you are about to get sick or that your period is coming soon. And in some women, pregnancy can occur without any of the later signs and symptoms of pregnancy. But, if you have missed a period, you might want to get a pregnancy test. In addition, there might be other symptoms that could happen to you that are not commonly experienced.

Q2. Can I be pregnant and have menstrual cycles?

A2. Yes, a small number of women can have monthly spotting or bleeding and think it’s their period due to regular hormonal change.

Q3. My period is late and I think I may be pregnant. What other symptoms should I be having?

A3. If you have missed at least one period, you may be pregnant. The other signs of early pregnancy can be nausea and/or vomiting. Some women have a craving for certain foods and/or an increased appetite. Other common symptoms include: tender and enlarged breasts, frequent urination, fatigue and increased vaginal discharge. The amount of blood circulating in your body increases that may result in other symptoms that a doctor would need to assess to insure there were no complications.

Q4. Missed a period?

A4. While a missed menstrual period is the hallmark of early pregnancy, missing a period can be due to a number of factors and conditions. If you’ve missed a period try not to stress out. However, you’ll want to rule out pregnancy. You do not have to wait until you miss a period if you suspect you are pregnant.  We can help by administering a pregnancy test prior to expecting your period. This test is more than 99% accurate and performed by a nurse.

Once you have a negative pregnancy test, you may wish to repeat it in a few days or your missed period may be due to the following:

  • Stress and anxiety – Stress isn’t good for your body, and it can cause you to have delayed ovulation.
  • Excessive weight loss, or weight gain – Losing a substantial amount of weight, or gaining too much weight too quickly can cause you to experience menstrual problems, like a missed period or a delayed period.
  • Contraceptives – Some women who take certain birth control don’t have regular periods.
  • Breastfeeding – When you breastfeed exclusively, the hormones that are allowing lactation to occur can block ovulation and your regular menstrual cycle.
  • Eating disorders – When you have excessively low body weight this can interfere with hormonal functions, which might stop ovulation.
  • Rigorous Exercise – Women who participate in activities and sports that require them to undergo rigorous training often experience skipped periods or no periods at all.
  • Medication – There are some medications that can disrupt menstrual cycles.
  • Hormonal imbalance – When you have hormonal problems, it can change the levels of hormones that your body requires to support ovulation and the menstruation process.
  • Problems with your thyroid
  • Uterine scarring – If your uterus is scarred from disease or medical procedures, this can prevent the normal buildup and shedding of the uterine lining common to a regular menstrual cycle.


Q1. Why do I need to get an ultrasound?

A1. There are several reasons to have an ultrasound.
For many women making a decision about their pregnancy, the ultrasound answers the important question, “how far along am I.”
In some cases, accurate dating serves as a guide to determine the kind of care you need or which termination procedure is available to you.
And lastly, the ultrasound can confirm if the pregnancy is viable and alert you if there are other health concerns for to be aware of.
For women in their childbearing years, the chances of having a miscarriage can range from 10-25%, and in most healthy women the average is about a 15-20% chance.  Referrals to a clinic or emergency rooms will be made if these are suspected.

Q2. What is an ultrasound?

A2. Ultrasound is a technique that uses sound waves to project a picture of an embryo or fetus in the womb. Ultrasound works by sending and receiving sound waves off the developing fetus. Echoes from the waves are converted into an image, called a sonogram, as seen on a monitor. Ultrasound has been used for more than 30 years, and no risks have been identified.
The ultrasound offered at Support Circle Pregnancy Clinics will:

  • Provide your estimated due date.
  • Measure the size of the fetus, which gives us its age.
  • Confirm if there is a fetal heart beating, which indicates it’s viable
  • Try to identify if there is more than one fetus.
  • Try to identify if the pregnancy is inside your uterus.
  • Identify possible miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy.

Referrals to a clinic or doctor are made as appropriate.

Ovulation & Conception

Q1. How can I determine when ovulation occurs?

A.1 On average, a woman’s cycle is normally between 28-32 days. Ovulation can be calculated by starting with the day the last menstrual period (LMP) starts or by calculating 11-16 days from the next expected period. This is considered to be ‘fertile time’ of a woman’s cycle, because sexual intercourse during this time increases the chance of pregnancy. The time of ovulation is one of the most important things a woman should understand about her body, since it is the determining factor in getting pregnant and preventing pregnancy. During the time of ovulation, an egg is available to be fertilized for only about 12-24 hours. However, since sperm can live in the body for 3-5 days and the egg is available for one day, your most fertile time is considered to be about 5-7 days. (usually 10 days is built into the planning )

Q2. I’m worried that I could have gotten pregnant last weekend. How soon after the fact can your test tell me if I’m pregnant?

A2. Our test is more than 99% accurate and can detect the pregnancy hormone, hCG, at 20 units, as early as 7 to 10 days after conception.

Q3. When do I ovulate? (What Is ovulation?)

A3. Ovulation occurs when one of the ovaries releases an egg into the pelvic cavity. The egg is retrieved and passes through one of the fallopian tubes. Ovulation usually takes place 14 days after the beginning of your menstrual cycle, if you have a 28-day cycle. The day of ovulation can vary depending on a woman’s longer or shorter cycles.  However, ovulation can occur right after a period finishes or later in the cycle. 

Ovulation occurs when one of the ovaries releases an egg into the pelvic cavity. It takes just a few minutes to travel to your fallopian tube and is held there until it is fertilized (or isn’t fertilized).  The egg is viable for 10-24 hours. It will take about 7 days to travel through the fallopian tube whether fertilized or not fertilized.  A non fertilized egg will last 12 to 24 hours before it begins to disintegrate.

General Questions

Q1. Can my partner or a friend come to the appointment with me?

A1. Yes. You can bring a support person such as a partner, family member or a friend with you to the appointment.

Q2. Can I get a slip from you that verifies my pregnancy?

A2. Yes, if your pregnancy test is positive, you will be offered a written verification confirming your pregnancy. Independent of your pregnancy decision, this verification slip will be needed to secure your next level of service.