Tag Archives: pregnancy symptoms

Normal During Pregnancy

What’s Normal During Pregnancy And What’s Not?

Pregnancy comes with a lot of unknowns. How one woman’s body reacts is an entirely unique experience. Some pregnant women face a whole host of symptoms, while some go unscathed. No matter how your pregnancy journey goes, knowing what is normal during pregnancy and what is not can keep you feeling confident about the adventure to come. 

Conditions Of Normal And Abnormal Pregnancy

Raleigh OB/GYN believes pregnancy is one of your life’s most beautiful and exciting times. A basic understanding of what’s normal during pregnancy and knowing what may indicate a problem can help you keep your baby safe throughout the nine months.

Normal Pregnancy Symptoms

Pregnancy can bring on several physical and emotional changes but vary from woman to woman. It is essential to understand some of the changes you might experience throughout your pregnancy.

  • Swelling, Aches, And Pains

When you’re pregnant, your body tends to hold more water than usual. This water retention can lead to swelling. Often, the extra water congregates in the lower parts of your body, such as your feet, ankles, and fingers. Additionally, the weight of your growing baby can also affect blood flow to your legs, leading to swelling. Many women also experience aches and pains while pregnant, another symptom that is common during pregnancy. 

  • Gastrointestinal Issues

Gastrointestinal issues are common during pregnancy. Your growing baby creates less room for GI functions, and your hormones are all out of whack. Common GI issues during pregnancy include nausea, vomiting, constipation, heartburn, and diarrhea. If any of your symptoms become severe or unmanageable, talk to your doctor. 

  • Skin Discoloration

At first glance, skin discoloration during your pregnancy may be alarming. However, developing dark, irregular patches, also known as chloasma, is normal during pregnancy. Women may experience this pigmentation disorder due to darker skin complexion, hormonal changes, or the use of oral contraceptives.

Abnormal Pregnancy Symptoms

During pregnancy, it is not uncommon to have some uncomfortable and unpleasant symptoms. However, some symptoms may indicate a serious problem. Education on certain symptoms that can lead to an abnormal pregnancy is of the utmost importance. 

  • Vaginal Bleeding

In the early stages of your pregnancy, experiencing light bleeding, called “spotting,” is harmless. The NHS suggests this happens when the developing embryo plants itself in the wall of the womb. However, heavy bleeding in later trimesters is not normal during pregnancy. Causes of vaginal bleeding during pregnancy include growth on the cervix, problems with the placenta, or may indicate preterm labor. If you experience bleeding later in your pregnancy, contact your OB/GYN immediately.   

  • High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure during pregnancy is called gestational hypertension or, in serious cases, preeclampsia. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists suggest severe and uncontrolled high blood pressure during pregnancy can cause serious complications for you and your fetus. Because high blood pressure during pregnancy does not often cause any symptoms, your OB/GYN should check your blood pressure during every prenatal appointment. 

  • Preterm Labor Symptoms

Preterm labor is when a pregnant woman experiences regular contractions that result in the opening of the cervix after 20 weeks of pregnancy and before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Signs and symptoms of preterm labor include

  • Sensations of abdominal tightening (contractions)
  • Dull pain in the lower back
  • Pelvic or lower abdomen pressure
  • Vaginal spotting or bleeding
  • Preterm rupture of membranes
  • A change in vaginal discharge

Preterm labor can result in premature birth, which often leads to your baby needing special attention in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). If you are experiencing any symptoms of preterm labor, it is important to contact your doctor or OB/GYN immediately. 

Pregnancy can be a wonderful time; however, you need to know what is normal during pregnancy and what are serious symptoms. Possessing this knowledge can help you have a happy, healthy, and full-term pregnancy. At Raleigh OB/GYN Centre, we offer a full range of obstetrical care from preconception to delivery. For more information about what is normal during pregnancy and what is not, schedule an appointment with our team of dedicated providers.

Pregnancy Symptoms

Pregnancy Symptoms You Haven’t Heard Of

Pregnancy symptoms are not one-fits-all. In fact, pregnancy symptoms hardly will ever look the same from woman to woman. Some women begin to experience pregnancy symptoms as early as 2-3 weeks, while others may experience little to no symptoms throughout their pregnancy. Either way, there are a host of pregnancy symptoms that, although bizarre, are totally normal.

Unexpected Pregnancy Symptoms 

Although every pregnancy is a unique and memorable journey, some pregnancy symptoms are more frequent than others. Some of the most common early pregnancy symptoms, according to the American Pregnancy Association, include:


  • Nausea with or without vomiting
  • Missed period
  • Tender and swollen breasts
  • Increased urination
  • Fatigue


As conventional as these symptoms seem, as your pregnancy continues, the hormonal changes in your body may lead to unusual pregnancy symptoms beyond the first signs and symptoms. Here at Raleigh OB/GYN, we want to ensure you are prepared for anything pregnancy might throw your way.


Though alarming, nosebleeds are relatively common during pregnancy. When pregnant, your blood volume increases to support the growing baby, and the pressure from the extra blood may sometimes cause vessels to rupture. These ruptures often happen in the nasal cavity because the nose has tiny blood vessels that can irritate and dry out from normal breathing. 


Dysgeusia, or distortion in taste, is caused in pregnant women due to hormone changes. Many women describe having a metallic taste in their mouth or complete aversions to the foods they liked pre-pregnancy. Even though there isn’t a specific way to avoid dysgeusia, some tricks to try include:


  • Eat what you can, and don’t feel bad about avoiding certain foods  
  • Drink citrus juices like lemonade to combat the metallic taste
  • Stay consistent in brushing your teeth
  • Try rinsing your mouth with a mild salt or baking soda solution
  • Considering switching your prenatal vitamin 


It is important to remember that dysgeusia doesn’t last forever and usually subsides by the second trimester. You’ll be back to eating your favorite foods in no time!   

Increased Heart Rate

Around the 8-10 week mark of pregnancy, your heart may begin to pump faster and harder. This is usually no cause for concern, as having heart palpitations and arrhythmias are frequent side effects of pregnancy. When pregnant, your blood volume increases significantly, and your heart must work harder to pump the blood throughout your body. Healthline suggests your blood flow will increase between 30 and 50 percent during pregnancy. 


If you experience palpitations accompanied by chest pain, trouble breathing, dizziness, or confusion, seek medical help immediately. 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition of the hand and fingers caused by the compression of a major nerve that often causes pain, tingling, numbness, or burning through the carpal bones, wrist, and flexor tendons of the hand. When pregnant, your hormones trigger fluid retention, which causes swelling. This swelling can push against the carpal tunnel’s median nerve, which increases pressure in the carpal tunnel and may lead to pain in the wrist and hand. Approximately 31% to 62% of pregnant patients experience carpal tunnel syndrome. Typically, CTS starts during the third trimester of pregnancy and will subside after your baby is born.

Sore And Bleeding Gums

As other symptoms, sore and bleeding gums, often referred to as pregnancy gingivitis, occur due to hormonal changes in the body and result from plaque build-up on the teeth. The best way to combat sore and bleeding gums is to practice good oral hygiene. Some other remedies include:


  • Use an anti-gingivitis toothpaste or mouthwash
  • Floss at least once a day
  • Fully remove plaque when brushing your teeth


If pregnancy gingivitis becomes painful and unmanageable, it is always recommended to consult your dentist or hygienist.


Becoming pregnant is followed by an array of different symptoms, some of which are more common than others. Raleigh OB/GYN is dedicated to helping you understand every step of your unique pregnancy journey. If you have been struggling with pregnancy symptoms, set up an appointment to talk to your doctor. You can schedule an appointment through our website or give us a call at (919) 876-8225.