Pregnancy Symptoms: Can You Feel Symptoms Shortly After Sex?
If you are trying to conceive, getting any indication from your body that you are pregnant can be very exciting. However, most women don’t experience early pregnancy symptoms right away and need to wait for some time before some signs can be seen. If you have some symptoms such as spotting or increased discharge immediately after having sex, these are not pregnancy symptoms at all.
The true pregnancy symptoms usually kick in around week five to week six after conception. However, some women might feel some signs early on, but most women will have to wait longer to experience any significant symptoms.
Around 60% of women experience early pregnancy symptoms around five weeks after the last menstrual period (LMP). Occasionally, some women might have symptoms right around the time they missed their period.
Early Pregnancy symptoms vs PMS symptoms
If you are trying to conceive, it can be easy to attribute anything and everything happening to your body to you being pregnant. However, early pregnancy and Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms are quite similar, and it is not always possible to definitively say whether the symptoms are due to pregnancy or PMS.
If you have any symptoms after a couple of days of having sex, they are most definitely not because you are pregnant. Here are some things that you should consider while deciphering your early pregnancy symptoms.
If you experience nausea a few days after sex, it is not a sign that you are pregnant. Although nausea is a common symptom of pregnancy, it does not develop this early.
Pregnancy-related nausea develops due to a change in your body’s hormonal levels as it is preparing to host the fetus. It takes about two weeks for the hormones to reach a level where they can have some impact on your body.
Hence, it is safe to say that you won’t feel nauseous a couple of days after intercourse if you are pregnant. If you experience pregnancy-related nausea, you have been pregnant for a couple of weeks at least.
Home pregnancy test
A home pregnancy test such as a test from Fertility2Family is a great way to tell whether you are pregnant or not definitively. However, you should take a home pregnancy test only after you have missed your period.
An early pregnancy test detects the level of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in your urine. The hormone is produced by the growing embryo and is not normally found in the urine of a non-pregnant woman. That said, to be detected in the urine by the home hCG test kit, the level of hCG must first reach a threshold level in the urine. It takes about 6 -7 days past ovulation for the hCG to reach a detectable level with a home pregnancy test kit. Hence, if you want to use a home pregnancy test kit to confirm whether you are pregnant or not, wait at least your are 8DPO to start testing for early pregnancy.
Testing before you expected missed period can detect a non-viable pregnancy which is also commonly referred to as a chemical pregnancy, a chemical pregnancy is pregnancy loss that occurs shortly after implantation accounts for 50 – 70 of all pregnancies.
Pregnancy Symptoms & Basal body temperature charting
It is a well-documented fact that Basal Body Temperature (BBT) can predict pregnancy with some degree of accuracy. However, the method works only if you have been charting your BBT before ovulation. Using an ovulation thermometer that is accurate to two decimal places throughout your cycle can help you detect when you are expected to ovulate when you have ovulated and detect early pregnancy.
Your body temperature increases by as much as 0.5 degrees one to two days after the LH surge and increase in progesterone and is maintained at this elevated state for as much as ten days.
Why do you feel pregnant?
Most women experience some symptoms during the early phases of the pregnancy. Although these symptoms come to the forefront when you are at least a few weeks pregnant. Some of the signs that you might feel when you are pregnant include the following-
- Feeling fatigued
- Feeling bloated
- Having backaches
- Experience mood swings
- Change in the breast, including increased tenderness
- Experiencing headaches
These symptoms arise as your hormonal levels change markedly during the early phase of your pregnancy. Once your body gets accustomed to these altered hormonal levels, these symptoms gradually wane off.
That said, some of the symptoms that we just listed can also occur due to some other reasons not related to pregnancy. Sometimes, you might feel some of these symptoms simply if you didn’t have enough sleep the night before. Furthermore, early pregnancy symptoms are quite similar to the signs that many women experience during PMS.
If you experience any symptom that you might not expect in your regular cycle, it can be easily confused for a sign of early pregnancy.
Whether you want to get pregnant or are trying to avoid getting pregnant, it can be stressful to experience these symptoms and their uncertainty. Trying not to obsess over these symptoms and make positive lifestyle changes goes a long way in dealing with such symptoms.
If the pregnancy is unintentional
If you are trying to avoid getting pregnant and having unprotected sex with your partner, emergency contraception can be an option for you. Commonly called the morning after pill, such medications are available over the counter. These medications can prevent pregnancy if they are taken within two days of having unprotected sex.
If you are trying to avoid conception, ensure that you take these pills as soon after sexual intercourse as possible. It is important to note that the active ingredients in these pills do not cause an abortion. The compounds merely prevent conception from being established. In other words, if you are already pregnant, these pills won’t cause any effect at all. These are only effective if the pregnancy is still not established and the embryo is yet embedded in the uterine wall (endometrium).
Trying To Conceive: Final Thoughts
Whether you are trying to get pregnant or trying to avoid conception, you might want to know whether you are pregnant or not as soon as possible. However, the symptoms of pregnancy won’t be evident before a couple of weeks after conception.
Early detection pregnancy tests won’t be able to give you a definitive ‘yes’ or ‘no’ before 7 -12 days of conception. The best thing to do in such a scenario is to wait for your next period. If you miss your period, take a pregnancy test to confirm that you are pregnant.
Many women tend to obsess over symptoms of early pregnancy. However, it is not a healthy thing to do whether you want to get pregnant or avoid conception. As discussed above, the signs that you experience in early pregnancy are similar to the symptoms you see in PMS. So, if you rely on these symptoms, it is easy to get confused regarding your pregnancy status.
If you are trying to conceive, the wait time is crucial. You want to take good care of yourself outing this time as you don’t want to jeopardize your pregnancy. continue to observe for any signs of early pregnancy and consult with your doctor if you observe anything out of the ordinary regarding your reproductive health.
If you are trying to avoid conception, ensure that you still wait for your next period. Concluding that you are pregnant or not based solely on the presence (or absence) of some signs or symptoms is never a good idea. If you have had unprotected sex, and you think you might be in your fertility window, take the morning after pill and consult your doctor as soon as possible.