To find out if you're pregnant, you can do a pregnancy test from the first day you miss your period.
If you have had unprotected sex in the last 5 days and you do not want to be pregnant, you may be able to use emergency contraception.
If you have a regular monthly cycle, the earliest and most reliable sign of pregnancy is a missed period.
Sometimes women who are pregnant have some very light bleeding and cramping (similar to menstrual cramping) at the time when their period would be due.
Other early signs of pregnancy include:
- feeling sick or being sick – this is commonly known as morning sickness, but it can happen at any time of day, but if you feel sick and cannot keep anything down, see a GP
- changes in your breasts – they may become larger and feel tender, like they might do before your period, and they may also tingle, the veins may show up more, and the nipples may darken and stand out
- needing to pee more often – you may find you have to get up in the night
- being constipated
- increased vaginal discharge without any soreness or irritation – the discharge is usally white and milky
- feeling tired
- having a strange taste in your mouth – many women describe it as metallic
- "going off" some things, such as tea, coffee, tobacco smoke or fatty food – you may also find you have a sudden craving for certain foods
See a healthcare professional as soon as you think you're pregnant, whether you have done a pregnancy test or not.
Starting antenatal care
If you want to continue with the pregnancy, it's a good idea to start your antenatal care as soon as possible.
Get in touch with a GP or a local maternity service to start your antenatal care.
Getting advice and support if you're not sure you want to be pregnant
If you're not sure you want to be pregnant, you can discuss this with a healthcare professional.
You can get accurate, confidential information (including if you're under 16 years old) from:
- a GP or nurse at your GP surgery
- the Family Planning Association (FPA) website
- Brook, a sexual health charity for young people
- a contraception clinic
- a sexual health clinic (also called a genitourinary medicine, or GUM, clinic)
Page last reviewed: 17 July 2019
Next review due: 17 July 2022