10 Things No One Tells You About Pregnancy

Pregnancy is an extraordinary journey, filled with excitement and anticipation. But like with everything, there’s plenty of things that many women don’t know until they’re pregnant. That’s why we’re talking about things no one tells you about pregnancy.

While many expectant parents are prepared for the common aspects of pregnancy, such as morning sickness and baby kicks, there are numerous lesser-known surprises that might catch you off guard.

Here, we share ten unique things no one tells you about pregnancy to help you navigate this incredible time with more confidence and a smile.

Your Sense of Smell Becomes Superhuman

Many pregnant women report a heightened sense of smell, almost like a superpower! This can be both a blessing and a curse.

Pleasant scents, like fresh flowers or your favourite meal, can become even more delightful. However, certain odours, such as specific foods or household cleaners, might become overwhelming and trigger nausea.

This heightened sense of smell is due to hormonal changes, especially increased oestrogen levels. To manage this, surround yourself with comforting scents and avoid strong odours that bother you.

You Might Develop a "Pregnancy Nose"

Beyond a heightened sense of smell, some women notice physical changes in their nose, often called "pregnancy nose." This involves your nose appearing slightly swollen or larger due to increased blood flow and hormonal changes.

It can be quite surprising to see a different reflection in the mirror! Don’t worry, this change is temporary and usually resolves after childbirth. Embrace these changes as part of your body's amazing journey and remember, it’s all part of creating a new life.

You Can Experience Weird Dreams

Pregnancy can significantly affect your sleep patterns and with it, your dreams. Many women report having vivid, strange, and sometimes unsettling dreams during pregnancy. These dreams can range from incredibly realistic scenarios to bizarre, fantastical stories.

Hormonal fluctuations, increased anxiety, and disrupted sleep patterns contribute to these vivid dreams. Keeping a dream journal can be a fun way to track these nightly adventures. It might even provide some insight into your subconscious mind during this transformative time!

Increased Saliva Production

Excessive saliva production, known as ptyalism or sialorrhea, is a lesser-known pregnancy symptom that can be quite inconvenient. Some women find themselves needing to swallow more frequently or even carry tissues to deal with the excess. This often accompanies nausea in the first trimester, unfortunately adding another layer of discomfort.

The exact cause isn’t entirely understood. But it’s believed to be linked to hormonal changes and the body’s response to increased levels of oestrogen and progesterone. Staying hydrated, chewing gum, or sucking on hard candy can help manage the excess saliva.

Pregnancy Can Affect Your Vision

Vision changes during pregnancy are not uncommon. You might experience blurred vision, increased sensitivity to light, or even temporary changes in your prescription. These changes are usually due to fluid retention, which can alter the shape of your eye or the thickness of your cornea.

Hormonal fluctuations can also affect tear production, leading to dryness or discomfort. Most vision changes are temporary and resolve after childbirth. It’s important to discuss any significant changes with your healthcare provider to rule out other underlying conditions.

Blurry Vision in Pregnancy

Your Gums Might Bleed More Easily

Hormonal changes during pregnancy can make your gums more sensitive and prone to bleeding, especially when you brush or floss your teeth.

This condition, known as pregnancy gingivitis, affects many women and can be managed with good oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups. Increased blood flow and hormonal changes make the gums more susceptible to inflammation and bleeding.

Maintaining a diligent oral care routine, including brushing twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush, flossing daily, and visiting your dentist regularly, is essential. Ignoring oral health during pregnancy can lead to more serious issues, such as periodontitis, which can affect both maternal and foetal health.

Your Libido Can Fluctuate Wildly

Pregnancy hormones can have a significant impact on your libido. However this can vary widely from woman to woman and even from day to day. Some women experience an increased sex drive, finding themselves more aroused than usual, while others find that their interest in sex decreases due to fatigue, physical discomfort, or emotional changes.

Both experiences are entirely normal and can be influenced by various factors, such as changes in body image, anxiety about the baby, and the physical symptoms of pregnancy. Communication with your partner is key to navigating these changes and ensuring that both of you feel comfortable and connected during this time.

You Might Develop Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is relatively common in pregnancy, particularly in the third trimester. It occurs due to swelling that compresses the median nerve in your wrist, leading to tingling, numbness, or pain in your hands and fingers.

This can be particularly bothersome at night and might interfere with your sleep or daily activities. Wearing wrist splints, especially at night, can help alleviate symptoms by keeping your wrists in a neutral position.

Additionally, avoiding repetitive hand movements and taking frequent breaks can prevent symptoms from worsening. In most cases, carpal tunnel syndrome resolves after childbirth, but persistent symptoms should be discussed with your healthcare provider.

You Could Experience Restless Legs Syndrome

Keeping Active and Hydrated in Pregnancy

Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is a condition characterised by an uncontrollable urge to move your legs. This is often accompanied by uncomfortable sensations such as tingling, burning, or aching.

It’s more common in pregnancy, especially in the third trimester, and can make it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep. The exact cause of RLS in pregnancy isn’t known, but it’s thought to be related to hormonal changes, iron deficiency, or circulatory issues.

Stretching, staying active, and maintaining good hydration can help manage RLS. Some women also find relief with warm baths, massages, or using a heating pad on their legs before bed.

You Might Feel Lonely at Times

Despite the excitement and joy surrounding pregnancy, it can also be a lonely experience. Friends and family might focus on the baby, sometimes overlooking the emotional needs of the expectant mother.

This can lead to feelings of isolation, particularly if you're experiencing pregnancy complications or anxiety. Social expectations can sometimes exacerbate these feelings, making it seem like you should always be happy and glowing.

It’s essential to communicate your feelings and seek support from your partner, friends, or support groups. Prenatal classes or online communities can also provide a sense of connection with others who understand what you're going through, helping to alleviate feelings of loneliness.

Embrace Your Pregnancy Journey

Pregnancy is a unique journey, filled with its own set of challenges and unexpected experiences. Understanding and preparing for these lesser-known aspects can help you navigate this time with more confidence and less surprise.

But make sure you embrace the journey! This is an exciting time in your life, and don't hesitate to reach out for support when needed—your experience is as unique as the life you're bringing into the world.

Ready to see your little one?

Book in for a private pregnancy scan with Peek A Baby today! Our friendly and professional team is dedicated to providing you with the best care and the most memorable experience. Alternatively, why not treat your loved one to a scan with Peek A Baby; visit us in clinic today to get your gift card. Book Your Scan Now.