Most unusual signs of pregnancy

So you think you may be pregnant? We're all pretty familiar with the classic early signs, like missing your monthly period or feeling nauseated, but there are many others that are not as common.

For both of my pregnancies, my first sign was exhaustion. I don't mean feeling tired when I woke up in the morning. I mean literally falling asleep during savasana in my yoga class. I distinctly remember telling my husband that my face "hurt to be awake." Both times I was baffled by this until I realized what was happening.

From the moment you become pregnant, your body starts preparing. New and different hormones start pumping out, and the results can be a little surprising. It's possible to start noticing signs of pregnancy even just one week after you conceive. From headaches to tasting metal, your body might start behaving in odd ways. Here are 10 signs of pregnancy you weren't expecting.

A constant cold

When I was pregnant, I was convinced I was allergic to something new in my environment. Almost overnight, I started coughing and sneezing constantly. I felt so stuffed up and even had trouble sleeping. Turns out this is a somewhat normal sign of pregnancy.

Pregnancy causes your hormones and blood volume to increase. One of the side effects is that your mucous membranes swell and dry out. When your nasal passages are dry, this signals to your body that it needs moisture, which signals more mucus production. Before you know it, you've used all the tissues in the office because of the constant drip.

Many allergy and cold medicines are off limits during pregnancy, so if you're suffering with this constant cold, talk to your doctor. Try easing the dryness with nasal drops and a humidifier. A neti pot is a natural way to clear out some of that built up mucus as well.

Sweatband, please

When you're pregnant, your body is working hard. It has a lot more blood to pump, not to mention it has to grow an adorable baby. Because of this, your metabolism increases. This means extra snacks (yay), but also lots of sweat (boo).

If you've noticed that all of a sudden you're waking up in a puddle, check when your last period was. This can be an early sign of pregnancy. For a little relief, try dressing in layers that are easy to remove throughout the day. And as if you didn't need another reason to stay hydrated, make sure to keep your cold water bottle nearby.

Where's the bathroom?

We often think of the woman who is nine months pregnant running to the bathroom every hour, but that need can start from the very beginning. Because of new hormones and increased blood volume, you'll be running to the bathroom more even in the first trimester. Even though it's annoying, make sure to keep drinking water. You'll feel better, and it will prevent the other bathroom problem you'll be battling.

Only pregnant women know the joys of too much number one and not enough number two. Pregnancy causes our joints and organs to relax. This is helpful when it's time to fit a 7-pound baby out, but not so much when our digestive tracts slow down. When we eat, our systems are slower to move food along. That leads to an upset stomach and constipation. Try to get plenty of water and stay active to get things moving. If that doesn't work, your doctor could recommend a medication to offer some relief.


Remember how your digestive tract slows down when you're pregnant? Well, that doesn't just slow things down in the bathroom. A slow digestive tract means the food in your stomach sits there longer, which can cause a feeling of heartburn.

Stomach acid can also leak back up your esophagus, causing a burning after eating. Your doctor can prescribe something to help with the burning. Try eating small, frequent meals to avoid having a stomach full of food. Drink lots of water throughout the day, but cut back while eating. This will keep your stomach from getting too full.

Is that my period?

A missed period is the first sign of pregnancy for most of us, but you could also experience a false period. If you and your partner have been trying to become pregnant, and you notice spotting or a very light period one month, don't get discouraged just yet.

Oftentimes women notice some bleeding about two weeks after conception. This is due to the hormones already. Some spotting could also be from the embryo implanting in the wall of the uterus. Unfortunately, bleeding can also mean something more serious is going on, so always check with your doctor if it is heavy or you're concerned.

My aching back

Backaches are not just for women about to give birth. Unfortunately, some women report back pain during their entire pregnancies. If you notice a dull ache in your lower back, it could be an early sign of pregnancy. Staying active with walking or prenatal yoga will help. Be sure to talk with your doctor if it's bothering you.

Metal for dinner

When you become pregnant, you realize that our hormones truly affect every body process, even our sense of taste! Increased levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone can make food taste different. One annoying sign of pregnancy is noticing a metallic taste in your mouth.

This will go away after you have the baby, but kind of takes the joy out of eating. To overcome the metal taste, try spicy foods. Chewing sugarless gum and drinking cold water throughout the day can also help.

The common signs

If you've noticed any of these unusual signs of pregnancy, keep your eye out for these more likely ones. For about 29 percent of women, a missed period is the first sign of pregnancy. Morning sickness or nausea is another common symptom. This can range from feeling a little queasy all the way to becoming dehydrated from constant vomiting. In a poll given by the American Pregnancy Association, nausea was the first sign for about 25 percent of women. For 17 percent of women, tender breasts were the first sign they noticed.

Despite all the signs, the only way to know if you are truly pregnant is a pregnancy test and ultrasound with your doctor. If you believe you are pregnant, make sure to schedule an appointment right away!