PMS or Pregnancy: Am I Pregnant or Is It Just PMS?

PMS or pregnancy

It’s amazing how similar the symptoms of PMS and pregnancy in the early stages are! And very often a woman goes crazy and can’t understand: is it PMS or pregnancy? Actually, it’s really difficult to say whether you are pregnant or it’s still PMS and your body prepares for a period. And how to understand what a woman deals with in a particular case?

PMS or the early signs of pregnancy?

Let’s figure out what the certain feelings tell us about in different cases. And at the end of this post, you will also find a table which helps to define if it’s pregnancy or PMS.

header 1 A change in eating behavior

Very often it’s an attraction to the new products that is usually called one of the first symptoms of pregnancy and also PMS. Yes, in reality, women can crave sweet or salty foods during PMS as well as pregnancy. But that’s where the similarity, perhaps, ends.

The aversion to food that future mums feel appears because of morning sickness. This symptom seldom manifests itself before the delay of menstruation. Usually, the morning sickness begins (if it begins at all) in the 5th or 6th week. And it’s connected with the fetal development.

What concerns cravings for the traditionally inedible products or the products which the woman has never liked, it appears usually because of the organism’s need in certain vitamins and elements. Furthermore, such a state is also typical for the later stages of pregnancy.

Thus, don’t misinterpret such eating behavior for PMS. As the difference is evident, it’s typical only for the later stages.

pms or pregnancy: change of eating behavior

header 2 Breast augmentation and its sensitivity

The reason for changes concerning mammary glands is hormonal changes. And as these changes are typical for both states, it’s very difficult to identify whether it’s a PMS symptom or a symptom of pregnancy. But you can focus on the duration of this phenomenon. If it’s PMS, the breast swells for 1-2 days, while during pregnancy it’s permanent. And it’s evident because the breast is actively preparing for the lactation during the 9 months of pregnancy.

header 3 Lower abdominal pain

Abdominal pain is one of the most common symptoms. But the nature of the pain is different: the pain during pregnancy is very mild and unobtrusive, it lasts 1-2 days. During PMS the pain is different for each woman: stronger or weaker, some women feel it for only 1 or 2 days, and others can suffer from it during the whole monthly period.

header 4 Back pains

Actually, it’s incorrect to speak about back pain as a common symptom of PMS and pregnancy because lower back hurts at the end of the second trimester. And you surely won’t confuse pregnancy with PMS at that time.

header 5 Mood swings

So we got to the most problematic symptom. As you might guess, the nature of this phenomenon is hormonal, what is typical for PMS and pregnancy as well. But still, there is some difference here.

Remember, that negative emotions such as anger, irritability or tears are typical for PMS. But frequently changing mood and hypersensitivity when positive emotions are as strong as negative is a symptom of pregnancy.

Here we can end with common symptoms. And now let’s see what symptoms are typical only for the early stages of pregnancy and have nothing to do with PMS.

pregnancy or pms: mood change

header 6 Frequent urination

Frequent urination worries a pregnant woman at the beginning and at the end of her pregnancy. But why does a future mother experience this symptom at the beginning of her pregnancy? The answer is quite simple: kidneys start working more actively as they have to remove the waste of two organisms instead of one.

header 7 Morning sickness

We’ve already mentioned this symptom. Yes, it’s one of the most widespread pregnancy symptoms, but it manifests itself much later.

header 8 Bleeding

Frankly speaking, the female body «recognizes» pregnancy after the implantation of the embryo. During the process of introduction into the mucosa, the embryo can damage the blood vessels, sometimes the implantation is accompanied by a slight bleeding.

Of course, the organism of each woman is not similar to others. And therefore everybody reacts differently to various changes. Some women don’t feel any changes at all both during PMS and pregnancy, while others suffer every month. That’s why you can see a table below, which will help you to catch the wind of the situation and understand what are you dealing with: PMS or pregnancy?

pms and pregnancy symptoms

Changes in eating behaviourHas a thing for sweet and saltFondness for inedible
Breast painDisappears after the beginning of menstruationAccompanies all the period of pregnancy
Abdominal painIndividual in each caseMild and short-lasting
Back painsSometimes a pain in the stomach is reflected in the backAppears in the later stages
Mood swingsTearfulness, irritabilityFrequent changes in emotional state
Frequent urinationA result of the changes in metabolism
Morning sicknessBegins in the 4th or 5th week
BleedingSlight and smearing


In conclusion, we should say that every woman is unique and no one can understand her body changes better than the woman herself. So, don’t be confused: PMS is a monthly phenomenon. And therefore every month its symptoms are quite the same, and a woman learns to recognize the forthcoming of menstruation very quickly. Of course, she will notice that her body’s behavior changes. And that’s it that should become a reason to consult a doctor or to use a pregnancy test!

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