pregnancy complications
pregnancy conditions

How to detect early pregnancy complications? Plus symptoms & prevention)


Pregnancy complications are less common but they may occur and can be dangerous sometimes. Prenatal care can help you prevent or treat problems during your pregnancy.

How do I know if something is wrong during my pregnancy?

Some symptoms may put you and your future baby at risk and can cause serious pregnancy complications. Call your doctor, nurse, or midwife, or health care provider if you notice these warning signs:

  • Persistent headaches, or ones that don’t go away
  • Your face, hands, feet, or ankles just swell up all of a sudden
  • You keep on vomiting for almost 24 hours
  • Bleeding from your vaginal.
  • dimness or blurring of vision
  • double vision and/or dizziness
  • spots before your eyes
  • A sudden gush or steady trickle of watery fluid from the vagina
  • burning or pain with urination
  • fever or chills
  • suspected labor
  • Persistent belly pain
  • rashes or sores
  • Sudden collapse or fainting
  • decreasing or no fetal movement after 24 weeks

Talk to your doctor, nurse, or midwife if you notice these serious warning symptoms:

  • Vagina bleeding
  • leaking of fluid from the vagina
  • early labor
  • you’re losing more weight than usual instead of gaining enough weight
  • your expected due date passes without delivery

What are the signs of premature labor?

A full-term pregnancy lasts for around 40 weeks. If contractions cause your cervix to open sooner than normal — between the 20th and 37th week — it’s called premature labor. Premature labor can be very dangerous and these are the common pregnancy complications that do occur.

The signs of premature labor include:

  • uterine contractions (strong tightening in your belly) every 10 minutes or less
  • steady period-like pains in your lower belly
  • belly pains with or without diarrhea
  • pressure in your pelvic area that feels like the fetus is pushing down
  • change or increase in vaginal discharge
  • a sudden gush of watery fluids from your vagina (water breaking)

RELATED: Everything you need to know about Prenatal vitamins

When should I call my doctor?

Call your doctor or visit your health care provider if you notice any signs of pregnancy complications including premature labor, imagine you’re having a miscarriage, or if you notice any other serious warning signs.

Is bleeding during pregnancy a bad sign?

Your body goes through a lot of hormonal changes during pregnancy. If you notice small bleeding you are perfectly okay. For instance,  hemorrhoids — varicose veins of the rectum that can cause bleeding — are very common this day in pregnant women.

However, some symptoms are warning signs of more dangerous problems. Vaginal bleeding can be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy or miscarriage. Call your doctor, midwife, or go to the nearest mother and child hospital as soon as possible if you notice any vaginal bleeding. If you have critical bleeding, go to the emergency room immediately.

Other things that are less severe can also cause vaginal bleeding. But see your doctor or midwife right away just to be safe.


There is nothing more stressful than to have something go wrong during pregnancy. It doesn’t matter if it is your first time being pregnant or your third. There are some common pregnancy complications expectant women should know about and be prepared to take action.

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Sharon Olabanji

Sharon Marie olabanji RN, CHO, Founder and CEO of Pregnancyvitamins, has a background in community health, nursing, and nutrition. As a mom of two, I do thorough research and I decide to take good care of my self and tackle health problems during pregnancy and after delivery. is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the research team.

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