10 Reasons You Might Not Know You're Pregnant (Until You're in Labor)

Body Weight

A large, protruding belly and maternity clothes usually hint to others that a woman is pregnant. But not all women show motherhood this way.

Since each person carries weight differently, some women look quite large around the midsection during pregnancy whereas others barely show signs at all. A mother-to-be's body weight before becoming pregnant can determine whether she and others notice.

Generally speaking, body weight can affect how women show their pregnancies in two ways.

First, the extra pounds associated with pregnancy may not be as noticeable for women who are already overweight. Excess body fat, especially around the stomach area, can help hide the presence of a baby -- even from the mother. It's also true that not all pregnant women carry their unborn babies similarly, which influences how large and rotund a woman's belly may appear.

Second, women who start a diet or begin an exercising regimen soon after becoming pregnant may not gain a noticeable amount of weight. The weight they lose might negate the pregnancy weight they gain. Since healthy pregnancies require the mother to put on weight and eat a variety of healthy foods, it's important to not overlook any weight gain if you suspect -- even slightly -- that you might be pregnant.

Looking back, women who didn't know they were pregnant recall falsely blaming stress or poor eating habits for packing on a few extra pounds.

There's an entire list of side effects women experience during pregnancy. How can a woman miss these signs? Head over to the next page to learn about other side effects of pregnancy.