Unusual Early Pregnancy Symptoms Before a Missed Period: 32 Things to Look For

by | Sep 21, 2020

Are you trying to get pregnant and can’t wait to find out if your latest attempt worked? Or perhaps you weren’t being very careful and would like an early clue whether you’re pregnant or not.

Either way, you don’t need to wait until you’re late on your period to figure it out. There are several unusual early pregnancy symptoms before a missed period that will give you a good sense if your intuition is right.

Most women seem to have heard all about the typical pregnancy symptoms: the morning sickness and cravings that are often the center of movie pregnancies and pregnant women’s discussions. However, the more unusual early pregnancy symptoms are the ones to really watch out for. They can clue you in before a pregnancy test will even be accurate.

How soon can you get symptoms of pregnancy?

For women who have been pregnant before, they might be able to tell that they are pregnant within days of conception, believe it or not! If you know what you’re looking for and how your body responds to pregnancy, it can be easy. However, when it’s your first baby, it’s not always that easy.

If you’re observant of some of the more subtle symptoms, you might be able to tell about a week and a half before a missed period for first-timers. However, not everyone will have these clues. That’s why most women don’t often realize they’re pregnant until long after their period is late or have taken a pregnancy test.

32 Unusual Early Pregnancy Symptoms Before a Missed Period

Simply tune into your body and see if any of these unusual early signs of pregnancy are something that you’re experiencing. You may not feel them all day, every day, but if you experience them at all, this is how you can tell you’re pregnant without a test.

These signs are not definitive of early pregnancy. Some women don’t experience any symptoms until well after they know their pregnant. So if you’re not feeling any of these symptoms, don’t take it as a sign that you’re not pregnant either.

Also they may be very similar to what you experience every month before menstruation (PMS). Therefore, it’s best to look at these signs cautiously and don’t feel to sure about the pregnancy unless your test gives you a positive.

1. Prominent blue veins on boobs and other breast changes

Pregnancy hormones can often make boobs feel sore and swollen. However, breast soreness prior to a period is very normal and might not sound any alarms. The key is to see if they feel any differently, like heavier or fuller, for example.

Even if that doesn’t give things away, one thing will: obvious blue veins on your breasts. Veins become very prominent on your breasts during pregnancy due to the increased blood volume throughout your whole body.

2. Feeling “weird”

Before morning sickness kicks in, during the first couple of weeks of pregnancy, you may be able to detect that something is off. You won’t be able to put your finger on it or you’ll play the role of Dr. Google when you start to feel these sudden body changes.

This may not be so obvious to you if not accompanied with other symptoms. You may pass it off as you’re coming down with a cold because it’s flu season or just tired because you’ve had a long week, however if you’re feeling a little weird, this is an unusual early sign of pregnancy.

3. Pains that are similar to your period

Some women get cramps a week or more before their period arrives. If you’re one of them, you may not notice that these cramp-like symptoms seem very different. However, for women who don’t typically experience period pains, spontaneous cramping before your period may be a tell-tale sign of pregnancy. If you don’t notice it now, when you look back you may realize that your cramps were from early pregnancy.

bloating, strange sensations, pulling, stretching, and pinching in your abdomen can be signs of pregnancy.

4. Strange sensations in your belly

If you feel sensations like pulling, pinching, or twitching inside your abdominal area, it could be your body’s way of congratulating you on your upcoming baby.

Some women tend to get scared when they feel anything unusual in their abdomen, thinking it could be a sign of miscarriage, however that is certainly not the case. This is nothing to be concerned about as it’s your body’s normal process of stretching things out to make room for your little one. The ligaments and muscles surrounding the womb tighten and relax as your body accommodates a growing baby, called Round Ligament Pain.

5. Bloating

Perhaps it was that big Italian dinner you filled up on, but it could actually be that your levels of progesterone are on the rise. These increased hormone levels cause the smooth muscles in your bowel walls to relax which is what leads to bloating in your abdomen. So if you fit into your favorite jeans yesterday and today you don’t, that might be an early sign that you’re pregnant.

6. Changes in poop

You can learn a LOT about your body if you pay attention to your bowel movements. For some newly-pregnant women, the problem becomes one of constipation. Again, you can thank that increase in progesterone for that. Eating a little more fiber will help move things along.

In other cases though, you may have a battle with the runs or even see your poop come out in a long, snakelike shape that makes you feel like you’ve cleared everything out. Since every woman’s body is different, if it’s unusual for what you typically experience, you just might have found new sign of early pregnancy.

7. Change in discharge

Another thing you should look to regularly for both your health and trying to conceive or prevent pregnancy, is your vaginal discharge. It typically has a different color and texture during different times of the month, pregnant or not.

When you’re expecting, an increase in estrogen levels causes increased blood flow to the pelvic area. More blood flow stimulates the body’s mucous membranes, leading to an increase in vaginal discharge in early pregnancy and beyond.

Typically throughout your monthly menstrual cycle your vaginal discharge will go from thin and slippery to thick and gooey. If you’re in early pregnancy, you might notice this discharge gets thick and stays that way. It won’t start reverting back to normal cycle discharge which normally it would.

8. Yeast infections

In the earliest days of pregnancy, your immunity takes a hit. This means that you’re more susceptible to illnesses and infections, and one that will surely get your attention is a yeast infection. You may feel a little bit itchy and sore in your vaginal area and it might be slightly uncomfortable when you pee. If you notice a foul odor and that cottage cheese-like texture that yeast infections are known for, make sure you head to the doctor to get it cleared up and get yourself checked out.

9. Unusual sleep patterns

Hormonal changes are responsible for your newfound sleep troubles and it can cause both complete exhaustion or sleeplessness.

For women that are usually energetic, you’ll feel fatigued or just plain tired. You may sit down for a minute to take a break and wake up hours later without intending to nap. It may just happen night time, but it could seriously knock you on your butt.

Conversely, you might have a hard time sleeping at all. Whether it’s trouble falling asleep in the evening or getting up often throughout the night, your sleep patterns may definitely be disrupted.

10. Very detailed dreams

Vivid dreams are very common in pregnancy and can occur at any point in pregnancy. If you don’t typically remember your dreams you may suddenly find yourself having very visual, detailed dreams, you could be expecting.

The dreams seem very real and will linger in your mind, often waking you up in the middle of the night. During anxious times, our brains go wild when it comes to dream-land.

headaches and migraines can be an early sign of pregnancy

11. Headaches

Another side effect of changing hormones in early pregnancy is getting headaches. Most women report them later on in the first trimester and second trimester.

For anyone that never gets headaches, getting them before your period is due is one unusual sign to watch for. If it’s not normal for you, it’s certainly something to pay attention to.

12. Dizziness

As your hormones change, it can leave you feeling lightheaded. When you’re feeling faint, find a place to sit and regroup. Think about whether you’ve eaten enough or if the temperature is too hot outside. However, if you’ve had plenty to eat, have kept hydrated, and are at a comfortable temperature, you might want to consider that it could be due to pregnancy!

13. Aches and pains

Back pain is an early sign of pregnancy and not just due to a large belly (which obviously doesn’t happen until later on in pregnancy). It can actually start about a week before your period would show up.

That increase in hormones throughout your body can cause the ligaments in your joints to get softer and stretch out. That can make your lower back start to ache.

This may also happen for your hips and even your legs and arms.You will certainly notice if you start to feel sore in your hips and other joint, similar to the feeling post-workout.

14. Weird taste in your mouth

For most people, a weird taste in your mouth that doesn’t go away is a good reason to visit the dentist. But if you have a feeling that you may be expecting, it’s an unusual early symptom of pregnancy.

Dysgeusia is the name for having strange tastes in your mouth, like a metallic or sour flavor. You won’t experience it the entire pregnancy, but a weird flavor like this for a couple weeks is a very good sign that you’re going to be a mom.

These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon

15. Aversions and cravings

Aversions and cravings aren’t unusual themselves, but what makes them unusual is how they are in relation to your normal preferences. For example, if you normally despise raw tomatoes on your salads and sandwiches and suddenly, that tomato looks and tastes like a dream, that’s unusual for you. And it’s a big clue that you’re pregnant.

The same thing goes for foods you normally can’t get enough of. If something you always eat disgusts you, it’s time to go get a pregnancy test and confirm what your body already knows! I used to love the taste of coffee and then as soon as I got pregnant, even the smell of coffee disgisted me.

16. Changes in saliva

When you took that accidental cat nap, did you find yourself drooling? If so, that’s another unusual early sign of pregnancy to keep in mind. More saliva in general (even when you’re awake) should make you take notice, but especially during bed time.

The same is true for dry mouth. If you’re thirstier than usual and can’t seem to quench it, it could be an indication that you’re pregnant.

17. Bleeding gums

Women get the short end of the stick when it comes to oral health. Not only are they more prone to dental troubles around that time of the month, but pregnancy can also make your gums more sensitive. This can often lead to bleeding or soreness with brushing and flossing.

With those powerful pregnancy hormones and more blood being pumped around your body to accommodate that new baby, you could notice a bit of blood every time you brush your teeth. Don’t let oral hygiene slide though. Keep brushing and make sure you visit your dentist too. With their help, you can prevent gum infections from ruining your smile before, during, and after your baby is born.

18. Super-sensitive smell

If you suddenly feel like a bloodhound that can sniff out anything, you might want to check to see if you’re pregnant. While it’s not all that unusual to have a heightened sense of smell early in pregnancy, what IS unusual is that you’ll pick up smells for things that you didn’t realize had any smell (either good or bad).

Of course, if the smell is a bad one, it will likely bowl you over and make you feel like you’re going to throw up. That right there will likely be your moment when you realize you could be pregnant.

19. Sinus situations or Cold-like Symptoms

In early pregnancy, many moms-to-be often mistake a runny or stuffy nose for either a slight cold or allergies. Often, they’ll look back and realize after they get the positive results that this was one of the more hidden early signs of pregnancy. The culprit? Estrogen. When those levels rise, it increases mucus production.

If you are actively trying to get pregnant and your nose has become stuffed up or runny, if no other symptoms of illness arise, you might just be pregnant!

These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon

20. Nosebleeds

Along with troubles in the nose, you may get a freaky surprise with random nosebleeds. Nosebleeds are usually no cause for concern for most people. In fact, plenty of people that aren’t pregnant get them here and there. Children get them often too, even when no injury or nose-picking has occurred.

So, what’s going on with early pregnancy nosebleeds? The blood vessels in your nose expand during pregnancy and are under more pressure. It makes you more prone to nosebleeds throughout your pregnancy too.

Some women will notice only a little blood and a very slight nosebleed. Others will have the kind of gushing nosebleeds that will scare them half to death. Most nosebleeds aren’t a cause for concern (unless you’ve managed to bump your nose), but if it keeps happening to you more than it ever has and you’re a week or so away from your period, you could be with child.

21. Heartburn

Heartburn is a notorious foe for pregnant women later on in pregnancy. With all your organs squished together more and more as your baby grows, you’re in for high levels of discomfort no matter what you eat. That’s because the top of your stomach relaxes where the sphincter is and makes it easier for stomach acid to rise all the way up your esophagus.

But in early pregnancy, few people realize that a digestive issue might be a clue, making it a more unusual symptom. When sudden digestive problems come on, keep an eye on them. It could be GI issues, a stomach bug, or pregnancy.

22. Skin changes or breakouts

Whether you were blessed with clear skin or spent your teenage years buying globs of spot treatment and coverup, sudden skin changes are also an early indicator of pregnancy. Those hormones are at it again, and when they start to change, so too can your skin.

Some women commonly breakout or have a zit or two before or during their periods. If that sounds like you, you might not think about it when you’re a week away from your next period and you have a fresh crop of pimples to contend with. The difference in early pregnancy though is that you’ll have more of a breakout with an eruption of red spots.

Alternately, if you typically have oily skin, you may notice that it becomes more dry, or visa versa. Tune into your skincare routine and the time of the month. Your skin could be trying to tell you that you’re pregnant!

23. Hot flashes

Hot flashes are something everyone associates with menopause. But they come from big changes in hormones, something that happens during pregnancy too. Those hormonal changes and the increase in blood supply that goes to your skin can cause your basal temperature to rise.

It’s the kind of hot that puts summer to shame. If it’s not even the slightest bit hot outside, this could be your body’s way of alerting you to a new baby growing inside you. You can also check your basal body temperature as you would to time trying for a baby. This can tell you everything you need to know before getting a pregnancy test.

24. Overwhelming emotions or changes in mood

For many women, hormone fluctuations as they approach their period are very normal. You might watch TV and start crying over the silliest things that touch your heart and soul. You may leave your lipstick at home and start crying uncontrollably or even just hearing an emotional story may have you reaching for tissues.

This could be typical for some women in everyday life, but if you don’t normally experience emotional changes or mood swings, this can be very indicative of pregnancy. Also, if you’re normally a calm person and you start getting agitated about everything, this could be an unusual sign as well.

25. Overactive bladder

Perhaps you make lots of trips to the bathroom after chugging a jumbo coffee in the morning. But when you start running to the bathroom more frequently than usual even when you’re long past that morning coffee, something might be up. This is not just due to a growing baby putting pressure on your bladder, but can be triggered by the sudden surge in hormones.

Pay attention to when you have to pee. If you suddenly have to go and then less than 10 minutes later feel the same full-bladder feeling, you could be pregnant.

These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon

26. Gas (Burps and farts)

Prepare to feel like a walking whoopie cushion! Pregnancy can cause you to be extra gassy and that gas will find its way out either in the form of burps or farts. As you get further along, they may even surprise you by erupting right out of your body.

If you suddenly burp louder than Will Farrell in Elf or worse, release a loud fart into the wild while in public, it might be time to take a test to see if you’re pregnant.

27. Memory loss

Often called ‘Pregnancy Brain,’ you may suddenly forget little things that are usually no trouble remembering for you. Perhaps you’re always good with putting your things in the same place and now, you can’t find your keys, or even your sunglasses which are on top of your head.

This sudden onset of pregnancy brain is going to be a new thing for you during pregnancy and afterward as your body readjusts.

28. Zero concentration

On the same thread, you’ll find it’s harder to concentrate. That’s largely due to the same hormones that have been causing your disruption of sleep and pregnancy brain. The same hormones that are giving you all these strange symptoms that you’re just now piecing together. You’ll know something isn’t quite right. Is it Alzheimer’s? No. More likely, it’s pregnancy.

29. Sudden sex drive changes

When your hormones go all crazy, they can send you one way or another. With your libido, you may find you either can’t get enough sex or you don’t want any part of it. It varies from woman to woman, but if you find your sex drive is in overdrive, your husband is going to be one happy guy!

30. Itchy skin

Thanks to the increased blood flow to your skin and change in hormones, one of the weirdest early signs of pregnancy is itchy skin.

You might not notice in summer when the mosquitoes are out because everyone is itchy then. However, when you feel itching around your breasts and your abdominal area, it’s likely not mosquitoes. Your skin may itch from the stretching that is happening as the hormones run through your body.

31. Nipple Changes

If your nipples look darker, feel tender, or they stick out more, it might be an early sign that you’ll need to start eating for two. Not just your nipples, but your whole areola (the dark area surrounding the nipple) may darken or get larger during this time.

32. Spotting or light bleeding

While we don’t normally relate bleeding with pregnancy, it’s not unusual at all to have light spotting or bleeding in early pregnancy. This can be one of the earliest signs of pregnancy and is typically implantation bleeding – when the fertilized egg or embryo attaches to the inner wall of the uterus, causing a bit of the soft tissue to get disrupted and come out of your vagina. It can occur between 6 to 12 days after conception.

Don’t get this confused with a full period, however, as it should not be bright and heavy. In fact, it is typically a brownish color.

These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon

33. Queasiness or Nausea

Of course the number one talked about pregnancy symptom is “morning sickness” or nausea. This can begin very early in pregnancy or it may take a few weeks for the hormones to kick into overdrive and make you sick.

The initial nausea may not completely send you running to the toilet all day long, but you may feel a little queasy. She rumbling in your tummy or gagging at an offensive smell may be a good indicator that something more is going on in your body.

The Bottom Line on Unusual Early Pregnancy Symptoms

These unusual early pregnancy symptoms are the only way you can find out you’re pregnant without taking a test. You may have a number of these unusual early pregnancy symptoms, or maybe 1 or 2. But the more you have, the more likely it is that you could be pregnant.

The only way you’ll know for sure is by taking a test. Even if you get a positive result, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor to confirm it and get ready for the wonderful road to Motherhood ahead!

These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon
These unusual early signs of pregnancy can indicate that you're pregnant before your missed period. You can tell without a pregnancy test soon

Hi I’m Marissa!

A mom of two little ones, here to provide some relatable experiences, tips, and tricks to the joys and challenges of pregnancy and childbirth through raising babies and toddlers.  Read more about me here.