If you’re starting to wonder, ‘Am I pregnant?’, then the best way to be sure is by doing a pregnancy test at around the time that your period would normally be due.
But if you’ve got a niggling suspicion you might be pregnant – but no way of getting hold of a test for a while (or perhaps it’s still a bit early to do a test), try our fun ‘Am I Pregnant’ quiz. You can check some of those common early signs that make you wonder – Am I pregnant? – and see how you stack up!
If you do take the quiz, whatever the result, if you suspect you are pregnant, it’s important to find out for sure. Most pregnancy tests will give an accurate result a few days before your next period is due. They are available over-the-counter in most Australian pharmacies.
To do the quiz, note down your answers (A, B, C or D) on a piece of paper and tally up the answers based on the scoresheet at the end.
A Two weeks or more
B In a few days
C It’s a few days late
D It is unusually late – a week or more
A If your period is not due for two weeks, you might be approaching your fertile period. Some women experience tiredness and bloating around the time of ovulation. Wait until your period is due, then take a pregnancy test if you still think you may be pregnant.
B Some of the early pregnancy signs and pre-menstrual symptoms can be similar, so if you just can’t wait until your period is due to take a test, try one of the more sensitive pregnancy tests (with a rating of 20 IU/L or less). These are usually more expensive, so have a think about whether it’s worth spending extra.
C You might be pregnant, if your period is usually very regular. However there are many factors that can cause a late period apart from pregnancy. Try doing a pregnancy test if you think there’s a possibility
D If your period is quite late, it’s worth getting a pregnancy test done and then if it returns a negative result, see your doctor about other possible causes.
B A little tender
C Really swollen
D Both B and C
A Most (but not all) women experience some breast tenderness in early pregnancy; however, not experiencing any breast change does not mean you are definitely not pregnant.
B, C & D Breast tenderness is a common (but by no means universal) sign of early pregnancy. On its own, it doesn’t signify much – particularly as many women also experience this at the time of ovulation and in the time before their period is due. But if the changes to your breasts are noticeably different to your regular monthly changes, this may be an indication of early pregnancy.
A None at all
B Once or twice
C I’m tired by the end of most days
D I’m totally exhausted from dawn to dusk
A Most (but not all) women experience tiredness in early pregnancy; however, not experiencing any fatigue does not mean you are definitely not pregnant.
B, C & D Tiredness is a very common sign of early pregnancy. There’s lots of reasons for feeling tired of course, but if it is possible for you to be pregnant and you have other symptoms, suddenly feeling very tired may have some significance. If you’re really exhausted – get plenty of rest. Pregnant or not, that’s bound to help.
B Sometimes I feel a bit queasy
C I feel nauseous sometimes but it goes when I eat
D I can’t keep anything down and I’m sick all day
A Though the majority of pregnant women report some nausea in early pregnancy, quite a few don’t have any morning sickness at all. Lack of nausea does not rule out the possibility of pregnancy.
B, C & D Nausea is a common early pregnancy symptom – but can also signify all sorts of other things. There’s lots of reasons for feeling nausea of course, but if it’s possible for you to be pregnant and you have other symptoms, suddenly feeling sick (particularly if it recurs over a few days) may have some significance.
B A little bit
C Yes, noticeably moody
D Yes – I’m a sobbing, giggling emotional see-saw
A Pregnancy hormones affect everyone differently. If you are not on an emotional rollercoaster – it doesn’t rule out pregnancy.
B, C & D Those pregnancy hormones affect everyone differently, but it is quite common in early pregnancy to report mood swings. This can also happen in the pre-menstrual phase, of course. If you are unusually moody and experience other early pregnancy symptoms, do wait until your period is due and try a pregnancy test. There are many reasons for mood swings, so if pregnancy is not the cause, and mood swings are causing you concern, do speak to your family doctor to see if there are different hormonal or other causes.
B A little bit more than usual
C Yes, I even get up once through the night to urinate
D All the time, I can’t seem to last more than a couple of hours
A Pregnancy hormones affect everyone differently. If you are not going to the loo any more often than usual, it’s no reason to rule out possible pregnancy.
B, C & D Frequent urination is a common sign of early pregnancy in many women. Of course, there are lots of other reasons – including urinary tract infections and other disorders. If this is your main symptom and you don’t have other signs of pregnancy, do see your doctor. If no other cause is apparent, wait until your period is due, then take a pregnancy test if you still think you may be pregnant.
B I’ve had cravings for things I don’t regularly eat
C I’ve had an odd taste in my mouth – could be described as metallic
D Both of the above
A Both of these can be an early pregnancy sign but not all pregnant women experience these symptoms.
B While weird food cravings can be psychosomatic – that is, you think you’re pregnant so you’re subconsciously adopting symptoms – they are a very common pregnancy sign. There is some thought that nutritional deficiencies are responsible for pregnancy food cravings; so if you think you might be pregnant, make sure you’re eating plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy and lean red meat. If in doubt, a course of pregnancy multivitamins might be a good idea.
C A strange, metallic taste in the mouth is a common pregnancy sign, but on its own doesn’t mean you are pregnant. There’s no reasonable scientific explanation for the metallic taste or the way that many foods will change taste for pregnant women, but it often lasts throughout pregnancy.
D If you are experiencing both of these common pregnancy signs you may be pregnant – but of course, these are not a definite indication.
A I haven’t noticed any change
B My cervical mucus seems thin and stretchy
C My cervical mucus is thicker than usual
D It’s thicker and there also seems to be more of it
A Changes in cervical mucus can be an early pregnancy sign but it’s easy to miss any changes if you don’t usually check it – and no change doesn’t mean anything on its own.
B Thin and stretchy cervical mucus, particularly if it is clear or a little like egg-white, often signifies the onset of your fertile period. If you are planning to fall pregnant, this might be a good time to have sex – but check your menstrual calendar and look for other signs of fertility also.
C & D A common early pregnancy sign is thickening of cervical mucus – which may also become more abundant. However there are many changes to cervical mucus throughout the cycle of a woman in her fertile years so this symptom on its own is unlikely to be significant.
A No, neither
B Yes, bleeding gums
C Yes, nosebleeds
D Yes, both B and C
A Pregnancy can increase the sensitivity of mucous membranes in some women, but just because you’re not experiencing bleeding gums or nasal membranes doesn’t mean you are definitely not pregnant.
B Bleeding gums are common in pregnancy because the hormonal changes increase the sensitivity of mucous membranes. But bleeding gums are not only caused by pregnancy. Whether you are pregnant or not, it’s definitely worth a visit to your dentist if your gums are bleeding. Until you can get there, use a very soft toothbrush but don’t stop brushing or flossing – and do let your dentist know that pregnancy is a possibility if you are offered an X-ray.
C Nosebleeds are common in pregnancy, because the hormonal changes increase the sensitivity of mucous membranes. But pregnancy is not the only cause of nosebleeds.
D Both nosebleeds and bleeding gums are common in pregnancy because the hormonal changes increase the sensitivity of mucous membranes. You might be pregnant – but of course both of these symptoms are not only caused by pregnancy. Whether you are pregnant or not, it’s definitely worth a visit to your dentist if your gums are bleeding. Until you can get there, use a very soft toothbrush but don’t stop brushing or flossing – and do let your dentist know that pregnancy is a possibility if you are offered an X-ray.
B I’ve had one or two
C I’m having them regularly
D I have headaches every day
A It’s not unusual to get headaches when you’re pregnant, especially in the first trimester. And if you’ve always been susceptible to them, pregnancy can make the problem worse.
B, C & D Headaches in the first trimester of pregnancy are fairly common and thought to be caused by changes in blood circulation, hormone levels – and often by fatigue. Headaches are caused by lots of things of course so they are not at all a definitive sign of pregnancy.
You have hardly any of the early pregnancy signs. Don’t forget that many of these symptoms take a while to develop – and some women don’t experience or notice any of these early signs during pregnancy at all. See what happens as your period approaches.
There’s a few signs of early pregnancy appearing; but don’t forget there’s also lots of similarity between many of the signs for early pregnancy – and those of pre-menstrual tension. Wait and see what happens as your period approaches – or if you can’t wait, try a pregnancy test, though if you take it too early you’ll get a negative result even if you are pregnant.
You are experiencing quite a few early pregnancy signs. PMT might explain some of them appearing; but it’s definitely worth doing a pregnancy test to check. The closer to the date of your period that you take the test, the more reliable it will be.
You’ve got lots of signs of early pregnancy – but they could be PMT, some could even be psychosomatic, if you’re really keen to fall pregnant – our subconscious plays very clever tricks on our bodies sometimes! Wait until the time your period is due, then try a pregnancy test. If you’re feeling concerned about a late period, do go and see your doctor, because some women don’t return a positive pregnancy test until a little later in pregnancy due to low hCG levels.
|1||When do you expect your next period?||0||1||2||3|
|2||How do your breasts feel?||0||1||2||3|
|3||Have you been feeling any fatigue?||0||1||2||3|
|4||Have you been feeling nauseous?||0||1||2||3|
|5||Have you been moody lately?||0||1||2||3|
|6||Have you been urinating more frequently?||0||1||2||3|
|7||Have you had any unusual food cravings or a metallic taste in your mouth?||0||1||2||3|
|8||Have you noticed any change in your cervical / vaginal mucus?||0||1||2||3|
|9||Have you experienced bleeding gums when you brush your teeth or perhaps more frequent nosebleeds?||0||1||2||3|
|10||Have you had headaches more often than usual lately||0||1||2||3|
By Fran Molloy, journalist and mum of four