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Q&A: What does implantation pain feel like?

As the fertilized embryo burrows itself into the wall of the uterus, many women experience some mild implantation pain or cramping. While your body is adjusting to your new pregnancy hormone levels and your uterus is turning into your baby’s new home, it is natural for a little cramping or discomfort to occur.

Some women also experience light bleeding, but this should not be heavy or bright red like your regular period (implantation bleeding is usually pinkish or light brown).

Implantation discomfort and/or bleeding will usually occur five to 12 days after ovulation. The pain you are experiencing should never be severe; if it is, or if you experience fever, chills, or heavy vaginal bleeding, call your doctor right away.

Severe abdominal pain can be present for a variety of reasons including intestinal flu, appendicitis, bladder infection, kidney stones, gallstones, or even an ectopic pregnancy (where the embryo implants outside the uterus).

As your pregnancy progresses you will experience several different symptoms (some not so comfortable), but many or most of them are a normal response to your growing baby and your expanding body.

At your first checkup, talk to your doctor about anything that is bothering you. Most doctors will give you verbal as well as written information on which signs or symptoms of pregnancy are normal and which are not. And don’t second-guess yourself. If you are not feeling well or are not sure if what you are feeling is normal, call your doctor’s office (they are there to help!).

Learn more about pregnancy implantation.

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