About 75% of women experience PMS symptoms. Confusing these feelings with those of pregnancy can lead to unnecessary panic. As a woman, you must be able to distinguish between the two so that you know whether it’s time to plan for a baby.
Keep reading to learn more about PMS vs pregnancy symptoms.
What Is PMS?
PMS, or premenstrual syndrome, is a group of symptoms that occur before your period. PMS happens when a woman’s hormones surge during ovulation. These changes can cause bloating, breast tenderness, and headaches.
You may feel nauseated or even vomit during the days before your period. Though you may not feel like eating much, it’s important to keep up your daily calorie intake so that you don’t lose weight.
You might also notice that your belly feels like it’s swollen. Your body produces more estrogen during PMS, which causes water retention.
Smoking cigarettes can make your PMS worse, so try quitting if you’re a smoker. Also, avoid junk food like chips and cookies. They’re high in sodium, which will exacerbate bloating and water retention.
Exercise is a good way to relieve the physical and emotional symptoms of PMS. Regular movement helps increase blood flow through the body, which may help reduce pain.
The symptoms of PMS can last anywhere from two days to two weeks before your period starts. If you experience severe pain during this time, ask your doctor to recommend a PMS supplement to help manage it.
The most obvious sign of pregnancy is a missed period. You might also experience spotting or light bleeding. It’s possible to confuse this with a normal period, but it may be an early sign of pregnancy.
This is especially true if it’s accompanied by other symptoms, such as:
- Mood swings
- Breast tenderness
- Frequent urination
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Swollen or sore breasts
- Food cravings and aversions
It’s always best to take a pregnancy test to confirm whether you’re expecting. If it’s negative, talk to your gynecologist about other potential causes of your symptoms.
PMS vs Pregnancy Symptoms
PMS and pregnancy symptoms are almost identical, but there’s one major difference. When you’re pregnant, you miss your period.
There are rare cases where you can be pregnant and still experience vaginal bleeding. This is called implantation bleeding, and it’s usually caused by a hormone imbalance.
How to Know You’re Pregnant
If in doubt, see a medical professional right away so they can confirm or rule out pregnancy with the proper tests.
You can also use at-home pregnancy tests. These detect HCG in urine samples. You can find them at drugstores and pharmacies.
Use them with caution, as they aren’t always accurate.
Improve Your Body Knowledge
PMS vs pregnancy symptoms are, similar but not the same thing. If you’re experiencing PMS, you’ll have your period soon. When you’re pregnant, this won’t happen.
If you have any concerns, see your doctor right away.
Our health category includes a wide variety of topics to help you understand your body. Read more of our articles to learn how you can take care of yourself.