Early Signs of a Hyperemesis Gravidarum Pregnancy

Updated on October 12, 2018
Kierstin Gunsberg profile image

Kierstin has two daughters and dealt with hyperemesis gravidarum in all of her pregnancies.

Source

Been Googling around trying to figure out if you're pregnant based on your early pregnancy signs? There's a boatload of lists and info out there but what's less common to find are signs that you're pregnant with a hyperemesis gravidarum pregnancy and what's nearly nonexistent is a list by women who've actually experienced HG in all of it's vomit-y, dizzying glory.

Welp, look no further. In 2013 and then again in 2014 I was pregnant with my daughters and gravely freaking ill. What I didn't know until my second pregnancy is that I had a "disease of pregnancy" with a nauseating Latin name and what I didn't find out until just this past year is that science can now (sort of) confirm that us lucky ones who are plagued by the condition aren't just making shit up like our male OBs and perfectly pregnant peers think we are—it's likely that our genes are responsible for hyperemesis gravidarum. Specifically, the GDF15 protein and IGFBP7 gene, both of which have been determined to play a role in appetite and the development of the placenta. What does all of this mean? I honestly have no clue, I'm not a scientist.

Here's what I do know: HG is real and it sucks and if you've experienced it once, you're almost certain to experience it in every pregnancy henceforth. Yay! So what's an HG burdened woman to do?

Obsess about whether she's pregnant or not in a flurry of terror and hope, of course!

Here were my earliest signs that I was pregnant and how my symptoms progressed into full-blown HG by six weeks.

Vertigo

The one single symptom that really stuck out for me before I'd taken a test in both of my hyperemesis pregnancies is that I was experiencing vertigo. I don't mean a little dizzy, hot flash episode or needing to sit down and drink a little water, both things that happen to me when I'm dealing with my regular hormones. I mean, the world would begin to spin and didn't stop even when I was in bed.

I'm sure this happens early on in non-HG pregnancies, but as my pregnancy progressed, this is a symptom that snowballed and contributed to my vomiting and nausea.

Feeling Faint

Along with feeling rollercoaster dizzy, I started feeling weak and faint pretty early on. I know this isn't an uncommon symptom for any pregnancy, however, instead of getting better as the early weeks of the first-trimester pass by, if you have HG this symptom will just get more powerful as your baby develops. A combination of dehydration, sleep-deprivation, and malnutrition can almost for sure be blamed.

Dizzy even when you try to take a nap? This was one of my earliest signs that I was going to have hyperemesis gravidarum.
Dizzy even when you try to take a nap? This was one of my earliest signs that I was going to have hyperemesis gravidarum. | Source

Unable to Look at or Imagine Food

When I was pregnant with my second daughter, I found out around four days before my period was even due to start. That evening I ate a sub (I know, listeria. We're fine) and noted how especially normal I felt.

A week later, as my mom cooked up a Thanksgiving storm downstairs, I hid upstairs in my brother's old bedroom with the door shut, trying to escape the aroma of sage and the sight of sweet potatoes bubbling in the oven below. At a point where some women are just tearing open the good tests, holding their breath while they watch their pee travel across the plastic window, the effects of hyperemesis gravidarum were already starting to take over.

A month later at Christmas, I was about ten pounds lighter, lying down in that same bedroom with all of the lights turned off and trying not to think about all of the horrifyingly delicious food being consumed by my family downstairs.

Easily Overwhelmed by Socializing

This is a weird one, and maybe it's not specific to HG at all, but for science, I'm going to tell you that everything from being around other people even for short periods of time 100% overwhelmed me early on in my pregnancies. In my first pregnancy, days before I bothered to take a test, I got together with one of my lifelong best friends who I hadn't seen in six months. All we were planning to was sit on a couch and eat chips and salsa while we caught up on life and I remember telling my husband that I didn't feel like I could even make it out the door that evening, let alone form a sentence. Whether that was typical pregnancy exhaustion or an early sign that something was amiss, I don't know, considering I was only technically like 3.5 weeks pregnant.

In my second pregnancy, at five weeks I hosted my first daughter's birthday party and questioned whether or not I'd even be able to make it. I don't know how exactly to explain what was so overwhelming about socializing in those early stages of my pregnancies since I wasn't vomiting yet. I think it was a combination of the building nausea and that I was already eating and drinking much less than I was used to. Nursing a bottle of club soda and consuming absolutely nothing else, I somehow made it through that birthday party and that was the last social event I was able to participate in until Easter four or five months later.

Tons of Spit and a Weird Taste in My Mouth

Two more symptoms that I had almost immediately after becoming pregnant both times was an excessive amount of saliva in my mouth (it felt like there was a cotton ball stuffed under my tongue all of the time!) and a strange, bitter taste (called dysgeusia) that persisted from shortly after implantation until the second trimester.

Within the first five weeks of both of my HG pregnancies I couldn't even think about my favorite foods, yet alone eat them.
Within the first five weeks of both of my HG pregnancies I couldn't even think about my favorite foods, yet alone eat them. | Source

Feeling Super Thirsty and Then Sick After Hydrating

It's normal to be pretty thirsty in early pregnancy. That's because your body is creating a lot of extra blood (among other things) and extra hydration is required to achieve this. However, after drinking water I didn't feel better, I felt worse. This would snowball as my pregnancy progressed and contribute to dehydration.

Dark Pee

Speaking of dehydration, another early sign of HG is dark urine since consuming fluids has just become infinitely difficult.

Craving Sour Things

The final early symptom that I had in both hyperemesis pregnancies? Craving sour things. Again, this might be a completely normal first sign for many women although I haven't heard that from any of my friends. While I could stand the thought of almost any foods, I was chowing down on Sweet Tarts before I found out I was pregnant with my second baby. The only other time I remembered feeling so desperate for sour candy was in my first pregnancy. Looking back, I think that the sourness was covering up the bitter taste in my mouth that was already contributing to my nausea.

Hyperemesis Gravidarum Pregnancy Test Poll

How far along were you in your last HG pregnancy before you got an HPT?

See results

Questions & Answers

  • What was your first sign of pregnancy?

    For me, with the hyperemesis, it was nearly always intense dizziness.

© 2018 Kierstin Gunsberg

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, wehavekids.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://wehavekids.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)