Need to talk? Call 1800 882 436.
It's a free call with a maternal child health nurse. *call charges may apply from your mobile

Is it an emergency? Dial 000
If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately.

beginning of content

Early signs of pregnancy

5-minute read

What are some of the early signs of pregnancy?

Most women will have some symptoms of early pregnancy within a few weeks of becoming pregnant.

The most common symptom of early pregnancy is a missed period. This may be less obvious to women with irregular cycles or who are using a type of contraception that affect their periods. These women may not notice a missed period. It’s also common to notice physical changes such as:

Some women will experience many of these changes, while others won’t feel very different to usual. If you are having severe symptoms, ask your doctor about things you can do to help you feel better.

The hormonal changes in early pregnancy can also cause changes to your mood. You may feel more emotional and cry more easily. These feelings are very common in early pregnancy, but if they become severe and start to affect your daily life, it’s a good idea to discuss them with your doctor or pregnancy care provider.

What should I do if I think I'm pregnant?

If you think you may be pregnant, you can check using a home pregnancy test. Home pregnancy tests are easy to use and you can get them at most supermarkets and pharmacies.

If your home pregnancy test is positive, you should see your doctor to confirm your pregnancy with a blood test, and get information and advice about what comes next.

If your home pregnancy test is negative, but you still think you may be pregnant, you can see your doctor for a blood test to check whether you are pregnant.

To find a GP clinic near you that is open now, use the Service Finder tool.

While you are waiting to confirm whether you are pregnant, it’s a good idea to behave as you would if you were pregnant. This means you should avoid alcohol and cigarette smoke, and ensure you eat a healthy diet, including a folic acid supplement.

Early signs of pregnancy

Learn more about the most common signs of early pregnancy.

How do I work out my due date?

Most babies are born about 38 weeks after conception. Since many women ovulate (release an egg that may then be fertilised) and conceive about 2 weeks after their last period, this is often about 40 weeks since the beginning of their last period. That’s why people often talk about pregnancy lasting for 40 weeks.

Women with a regular 28-day cycle can calculate an estimated due date for their baby by counting 40 weeks from the first day of their last period. This may not be so simple or accurate in other situations, such as if you have long or irregular cycles, don’t remember when you had your last period, or if you became pregnant while taking contraception that affected your cycle.

Use the due date calculator to calculate your estimated due date.

If you’re not sure when you conceived, your doctor or midwife may refer you for a dating scan that uses ultrasound to estimate your due date based on your baby’s size.

What should I do if I didn't plan to fall pregnant?

Unplanned pregnancies happen to people of all ages and backgrounds.

If you are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy, you may choose to:

Pregnancy is an emotional time, especially if your pregnancy was unplanned. It can be helpful to discuss your options with someone you trust, such as your partner, a family member or close friend. Your doctor or local family planning clinic can also give you information and advice.

You don’t need to decide what to do right away, but it’s still a good idea to see your doctor as soon as possible. If you choose to terminate the pregnancy, it’s best to have the procedure done as soon as possible. If you decide to continue the pregnancy, your doctor can give you information and advice to maximise your health and wellbeing, as well as your baby’s.

Speak to a maternal child health nurse

Call Pregnancy, Birth and Baby to speak to a maternal child health nurse on 1800 882 436 or video call. Available 7am to midnight (AET), 7 days a week.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: November 2021


Back To Top

Need more information?

Morning sickness - MyDr.com.au

Many women experience morning sickness (nausea and vomiting) in early pregnancy, and the symptoms can actually occur at any time of the day or night.

Read more on myDr website

Morning sickness

Morning sickness is a feeling of nausea or the experience of vomiting during pregnancy. Find out why some women get it and what you can do to relieve it.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Week by week pregnancy- antenatal care at 7 weeks pregnant

Your doctor can look at your foetus’s features to determine how old they are – find out how. You need to talk to your doctor if you experience very severe morning sickness as you may not be getting all the nutrients you and your baby need or early pregnancy spotting (spot bleeding) as you may be at risk of miscarriage.

Read more on Parenthub website

Pregnancy - signs and symptoms - Better Health Channel

betterhealth.vic.gov.au

Read more on Better Health Channel website

5 weeks pregnant: Changes for mum

Week 5 of pregnancy is probably when you’ll know that you’re pregnant because your period is missing. There are also subtle changes in your body which are symptoms of pregnancy such as changes to your breasts, and pregnancy symptoms like morning sickness and pregnancy heartburn. These changes are caused by pregnancy hormones, like hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin, produced by the placenta) which is the hormone detected by a pregnancy test.

Read more on Parenthub website

Pregnancy at week 6

By week 6, your baby is growing quickly and you may notice the early signs of your pregnancy, such as feeling nauseous.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Support for Girls - Brave Foundation

Yes, it sounds like in the movies, but food cravings sometimes can be a sign of pregnancy

Read more on Brave Foundation website

Multiple pregnancy (triplets or more)

Learning you're pregnant with triplets or more can be a shock, but overall, most parents find having multiple babies to be a positive experience.

Read more on Pregnancy, Birth & Baby website

Pregnancy and your mental health - Better Health Channel

betterhealth.vic.gov.au

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Diabetes and getting pregnant - MyDr.com.au

How will having diabetes affect your pregnancy and your baby? And what planning do you need to do first?

Read more on myDr website

Call us and speak to a Maternal Child Health Nurse for personal advice and guidance.

Need further advice or guidance from our maternal child health nurses?

This information is for your general information and use only and is not intended to be used as medical advice and should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes.

The information is not a substitute for independent professional advice and should not be used as an alternative to professional health care. If you have a particular medical problem, please consult a healthcare professional.

Except as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, this publication or any part of it may not be reproduced, altered, adapted, stored and/or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of Healthdirect Australia.