Why Don't I Have any Pregnancy Symptoms?

Julie Kirk
Image of a pregnant woman feeling her belly

You may be concerned because you just found out you're pregnant, but you're not experiencing any pregnancy symptoms. Being pregnant without symptoms is not typically a cause for concern when you are early in your pregnancy. Keep in mind that every pregnancy is different and the intensity and frequency of your symptoms can vary as well.

Is It Normal to Have a Positive Pregnancy Test But No Symptoms?

Can you be pregnant without symptoms? If you are not experiencing symptoms of pregnancy after a positive pregnancy test, it may simply be too early. In general, most women start to feel symptoms around five to six weeks gestational age and according to one study, the majority of women (nearly 90%) will feel symptoms by the end of the eighth week.

Is Being Pregnant With No Symptoms Common?

It is quite common to not experience any symptoms for the first month or two. However, if you wait about two weeks after your first home pregnancy test and still have no pregnancy symptoms, you may want to take another test or contact your doctor. Though it's rare, you may have had a false positive reading on your pregnancy test or you also may have miscarried without realizing it. According to the March of Dimes, about 10 to 15% of pregnancies result in a miscarriage.

Woman with positive pregnancy test

Is It Possible Not to Know You're Pregnant Until Delivery?

There is the rare chance you can be pregnant and not realize it until you go into labor. Approximately 1 in 2,500 women don't know they are pregnant until they go into labor. A few reasons a woman may experience no signs of pregnancy include:

  • If you have irregular periods or no periods
  • If you are overweight
  • If you've never been pregnant before, you may miss signs of pregnancy or mistake the signs for something else.
  • You may carry deep or small and your abdomen may not protrude forward with the growing pregnancy

There is a condition when a woman fails to acknowledge she's pregnant called denial of pregnancy or cryptic pregnancy. She may not have typical pregnancy signs, but she also is psychologically not prepared or able to accept the pregnancy and the circumstances surrounding the pregnancy. One recent study documents the incidence as about 1 in 500 women experience denial of pregnancy.

When to Be Concerned

As noted earlier, having no symptoms early in your pregnancy is not unusual. However, there may be a cause for concern if you initially had signs of pregnancy, and you notice a major change in your symptoms. If your symptoms suddenly disappear, there may be a problem with the pregnancy and it is recommended that you contact your doctor.

Common Pregnancy Symptoms

Pregnancy symptoms most likely come from the hormone HCG, the same hormone that is detected in pregnancy tests. If you have no pregnancy symptoms but have tested positive on a pregnancy test, you are probably pregnant. According to the Mayo Clinic, you can expect some or all of the following symptoms in early pregnancy:

Missing Your Period

The first sign that makes many women suspect they're pregnant is missing their period. However, many women have implantation bleeding around the time of their period. Usually the bleeding is very light and only lasts a day or two. If this is different from your regular period and you've had unprotected sex or are trying to get pregnant, you should take a pregnancy test.

Tender or Swollen Breasts

Your breasts may become more sensitive during the first trimester, similar to how they might feel right before you get your period. However, many woman who drink plenty of water and avoid caffeine have no breast tenderness in general and may not experience this symptom early in the pregnancy.

Sensitivity to Smells

You may have a more heightened sense of smell when you're pregnant which can be attributed to pregnancy hormones, in this case specifically estrogen. These smells can also trigger nausea and morning sickness. Being sensitive to smells can easily be overlooked as a pregnancy symptom.

Food Aversions or Food Cravings

You may have a specific reaction to certain foods. The foods that you once loved no longer sound appetizing. Or, you may crave foods that you normally dislike. You may not make the connection that these could be pregnancy symptoms and just assume you may or may not have a taste for certain foods.

Frequent Urination

You may notice more bathroom stops. This symptom usually pops up around six weeks. However, if you normally drink a lot of fluids (which you should be doing regardless), you may not notice this symptom since you're already spending a lot of time in the bathroom.

Exhaustion

You will probably feel tired or fatigued in the first trimester, but if you're already tired from taking care of other children or busy at work, you may not notice a difference.

Morning Sickness

Many women experience nausea and vomiting in early pregnancy. Despite the name, this can happen at any time. Regardless of what all the television programs, movies, and novels say, many women do not experience morning sickness. You may also mistake it for a stomach bug or stomach upset from something you ate.

You Can Have a Healthy, Normal Pregnancy

Keep in mind that every woman and every pregnancy is different. While some women will run the gamut on early pregnancy symptoms, others may experience minimal to no symptoms. You can be reassured that even though you may not have these early pregnancy symptoms, your pregnancy can progress normally and you can deliver a happy, healthy baby.

Why Don't I Have any Pregnancy Symptoms?