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Preeclampsia In Pregnancy Pregnancy Symptoms

Is Spotting An Early Pregnancy Symptom?

Women who are actively trying to conceive (TTC) a baby are acutely aware of the various stages of their cycle. During the two weeks post ovulation, many women are checking their temperatures, waiting to see if their period will make an appearance or whether they're pregnant. Often, they are waiting for early pregnancy symptoms to give them some encouragement that their egg was 'sticky', that is, that a fertilized egg successfully has burrowed into the uterine wall.

On the other hand, women who aren't trying to become pregnant and have every reason to expect their period, wonder whether spotting they may see is their monthly 'aunt Flo' (AF) trying to make an appearance or if something else is amiss. If their period doesn't show up in time and they do experience spotting, some may panic and wonder whether spotting is an early pregnancy symptom or nothing to be worried about.

So, is spotting an indication that a woman is pregnant? Well, the only way of knowing if you are truly pregnant is to take a home pregnancy test (HPT). However, if you've been experiencing very light spotting, light pink spotting, brown spotting, or tan spotting it could be an indication of pregnancy.

What is spotting?

Spotting is a term used to define a light discharge that occurs and is typically light pink, rusty, brownish or tan in color. Sometimes it's mixed with creamy discharge or cervical fluid. It generally is not enough to reach the panties, and usually can only be seen on the toilet tissue upon wiping. Spotting doesn't turn into a full-blown period, is often scant, and goes away after a day or so.

Does spotting mean I'm pregnant?

While you can't have a period while pregnant, spotting may or may not be an early symptom of pregnancy. For many women, light spotting is simply indicative of an impending menstrual cycle ready to make it's appearance, or due to hormonal changes during a woman's cycle. If you experience frequent spotting with no known cause, it's wise to seek out your doctor or midwife to see if you may have a hormonal imbalance. However, if spotting is indicative of an early pregnancy, it is typically called implantation bleeding. This happens when a fertilized egg burrows into the uterine lining, causes the lining to slough off a bit of blood. The blood takes a while to make it's way from the uterus to the vagina, so it's 'older' by the time it reaches your panties or toilet paper. This explains why the blood is often brown discharge, pink, or rust in color.

On a personal note, I myself had brown discharge for about a day prior to the onset of what was supposed to be my period. I discovered I was pregnant a few days later, so believe I experienced implantation spotting. However, it's always important to back up any pregnancy suspicions or early pregnancy symptoms with an accurate early pregnancy test. Many women use First Response Early Result (FRER), as it provides accurate pregnancy test results as early as 5 days before a missed period.

In short, yes, very light spotting can be an early pregnancy symptom, but always test to make sure, or for absolute certainty, visit your health care provider for a pregnancy test via a blood test.

By Tara Aitch - Tara is a talented web and print writer, for blogs, websites, copy writing, how-to articles, product reviews, SEO content and more. Areas of expertise include: homemaking, frugal living, organization, homesc...  





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