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If you are here, then you have most likely come to ponder the question “Is diarrhea a sign of pregnancy?”
In this article:
- Is Diarrhea a Sign of Pregnancy?
- What Causes Diarrhea During Pregnancy?
- Other Causes of Diarrhea During Pregnancy
- When Should I See a Doctor About Diarrhea?
- Other pregnancy Symptoms
Is Diarrhea a Sign of Pregnancy?
Is diarrhea a sign of pregnancy? The answer is: it can be.
Loose bowel movements are most common during late pregnancy but can also occur during early pregnancy.
What Causes Diarrhea During Pregnancy?
It is most common for pregnant women to experience diarrhea during the third trimester. Diarrhea can be an indicator of labour.
However, women experience loose stools or watery bowel movements during the early pregnancy stages too. This can be because of diet changes, or hormonal changes.
During early pregnancy, hormone levels fluctuate massively. The particular pregnancy hormone which is responsible for diarrhea and digestive troubles is progesterone. As the progesterone levels rapidly increase, it can cause the digestive system to slow down, which in turn can cause bloating, diarrhea, constipation and gas, as well as abdominal pain due to the digestive tract issues.
Other Causes of Diarrhea During Pregnancy
We have discussed that diarrhea can be caused by hormonal changes and diet changes during pregnancy, but what might other causes be?
- Food poisoning
- Bowel infection (infection diarrhea)
- Diseases such as celiac disease
- Food intolerances
- Stomach flu
- Bowel disorders (such as irritable bowel syndrome)
When Should I See a Doctor About Diarrhea?
You should see a doctor about diarrhea if it lasts for two days without any improvement, and you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Trouble urinating
- Severe weakness
- Dark coloured urine or urine with a strong odour
- Severe abdominal pain
- Severe rectal pain
Other Pregnancy Symptoms
Changes in Your Breasts – Tender Breasts
One of the first symptoms that most women notice is changes in their breasts. If your breasts are feeling more full or tender, or if the areolas darken or enlarge, it may be an indicator that you are pregnant.
Mild abdominal cramping during pregnancy can have multiple causes, and, whilst they can be worrying, they are usually nothing to worry about.
During early pregnancy- in the first 12 weeks- mild stomach cramping or pain can be caused by your womb expanding- which stretches the ligaments in your belly- to make room for your growing baby. It may also be caused by the sudden increase in progesterone levels, which can cause digestive issues, such as constipation and gas, which can result in abdominal cramping.
However, if you experience abdominal cramping accompanied by bleeding, pain in the tip of your shoulder, any lightheadedness, discomfort when urinating or having a bowel movement, or brown discharge, you may be having an ectopic pregnancy.
An ectopic pregnancy is a medical emergency, so if you suspect that you might be having an ectopic pregnancy, you should contact your healthcare professional as soon as possible.
If you experience heavy bleeding accompanied by severe abdominal pain, it may be a sign of a miscarriage or another issue.
Morning Sickness – Nausea and Vomiting
Morning sickness- or nausea and vomiting during pregnancy- is definitely one of the worst pregnancy symptoms that women experience.
Despite its name, morning sickness can occur at any time of day- and you may even feel nausea for entire days during pregnancy.
If you experience nausea and vomiting for entire days, it may be a sign of hyperemesis gravidarum: a severe form of pregnancy sickness.
Hyperemesis gravidarum, especially when accompanied with diarrhea, can cause side effects such as dehydration and malnourishment.
If you are feeling very tired during pregnancy, it is normal! I mean, you are growing a tiny human inside of you!
Extreme fatigue is a common pregnancy symptom that the majority of women experience during the first trimester.
Extreme fatigue during early pregnancy is caused by a variety of normal reasons, including:
- Pregnancy hormones
- The building of the placenta
- Your blood supply is being sent to the growing baby
- High metabolism
- Increased heart rate
- Low blood pressure and low blood sugar
During the third trimester, extreme fatigue may be caused by:
- The stress of having a baby
- The weight of your baby bump
- Lack of sleep or pregnancy insomnia
If you are feeling constantly exhausted, are pale in colour and on occasions, weak or lightheaded, it may be a sign of iron deficiency anaemia.
You should consult your healthcare professional if fatigue is interrupting your ability to perform daily tasks.
Changes in Bathroom Habits
During pregnancy, you go through a lot of hormonal changes.
The increase in one particular hormone, progesterone, can cause some digestive issues. This is because the hormone, progesterone, slows the digestive system down. This can cause constipation, diarrhea and gas buildup.
However, there may be other causes of diarrhea during pregnancy.
Cervical Mucus Changes
During the first few weeks after conception, you may notice a change in the consistency and colour of your cervical mucus.
You may experience a lot of milky white or clear egg white discharge. This discharge is called leucorrhea.
Hi, I’m Louise- mum of one to a little boy called Mason.
I am the Digital Marketing and Admin Assistant for MyBump2Baby.
I enjoy working to provide excellent service to MyBump2Baby’s growing families.
Nice to meet you!