Pregnancy Cramps Or Period Cramps? What’s The Difference

Pregnancy Cramps Or Period Cramps? What's The Difference

Early pregnancy symptoms can resemble those that a woman has right before her menstruation. Early pregnancy can look like menstruation. Women may confuse PMS cramps with early pregnancy cramps or wonder if they are pregnant. PMS and pregnancy have many symptoms, but each has its own unique ones.

Do period cramps feel like early pregnancy cramps?

During pregnancy, your dobby adjusts its functions accordingly. These changes occur when the fertilized egg implants in your uterus (a process known as implantation).

Some women may feel slight cramping during this period. Some other signs include belly pain and bloating. Implantation cramping has not been well studied; however, each person seems to experience it slightly differently.

Some people describe the sensation as having just slight cramps, a dull ache, or slight twinges.  Early pregnancy cramps may also feel like a stinging, tingling, or pulling sensation that can continue for a few days or come and go.

Contrarily, cramps during a period could be more pronounced, obvious, uncomfortable, or painfully intense. It may spread from the lower belly and pelvis to the lower back.

It is good to discuss your symptoms with your healthcare provider to better understand your menstrual cramps.

How do cramps in periods and pregnancy differ?

Menstrual cramps and early pregnancy cramps might have comparable symptoms. Both involve lower abdominal or pelvic pain that may be dull, severe, persistent, or irregular.

You should probably take into account any additional symptoms you may have in order to identify which one you are experiencing.

Period cramps

Dysmenorrhea, or painful periods, is a common occurrence.

As the uterus sheds its lining, the muscles in the uterus tighten, causing painful cramping for the woman experiencing her period. These are some characteristics of menstruation pain:

  • Lower back or thigh pain
  • Discomfort in your lower abdomen 
  • Dull pelvic pain with powerful bursts
  • Pain that starts a few days before your period or when you start to bleed

What are the other symptoms of menstruation?

You could suffer a variety of additional symptoms before or during your period in addition to menstrual cramps. It may include PMS.

Premenstrual syndrome

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a group of symptoms that may appear days or weeks before your period.

PMS affects almost 90% of women. Many PMS symptoms appear in early pregnancy as well. 

It may show as: 

  • Lower abdomen aches
  • Pelvic discomfort
  • Swelling or discomfort in the breasts constipation
  • Mood swings
  • Mild bleeding or signs of weariness

Pregnancy cramps

Not everyone experiences cramps while having an implant. And for those who experience them, the cramps could be light or strong.

Some people describe the sensations as:

  • Pricking
  • Pulling
  • Tingling

This may make it easier to distinguish it from a menstrual cramp.

Since it is uncommon to have severe cramping pain during implantation, anyone who experiences painful cramping in between periods should see a doctor.

Implantation usually takes place anywhere from 6-12 days after ovulation in pregnancies. A person’s menstrual period often starts around this time.

When an egg is fertilized, the body gets the uterus lining ready to hold and safeguard the egg.

A little light bleeding or spotting may occur along with implantation cramps. Lighter menstruation than usual is known as implantation bleeding.

Other pregnancy warning signs

Early pregnancy symptoms like cramping or bleeding during implantation are possible.

It is easy to mistake period cramps or a mild period for implantation symptoms. It helps to be aware of the other early indicators of pregnancy because menstruation and implantation share symptoms.

Among other early indications of pregnancy are:

  • Swollen, painful, heavier, or larger breasts
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Nausea or vomiting, food phobias or cravings
  • Headaches
  • Constipation
  • Mood changes
  • Experiencing faintness or dizziness while crying
  • High body temperature
  • lNo period

Can pregnant women get periods?

Pregnancy does not cause a true menstrual period, which is the loss of the uterine lining before a new cycle. Many women experience implantation bleeding in the early weeks of pregnancy, which they mistake for a period. Early pregnancy bleeding is usually lighter than menstruation.

Pregnancy tests are the only technique to confirm pregnancy.

When should you test for pregnancy?

A woman may take a pregnancy test immediately if she thinks she is pregnant or has missed her period.

Up to five days before your missing period, several at-home pregnancy tests can determine whether you are expecting. However, doctors warn against taking a test too quickly because it occasionally leads to erroneous results. A more reliable target date could be the first day of your missing period.

When your urine is concentrated, it has the maximum amount of pregnancy hormones. So it is best to check your urine for pregnancy early in the morning.


Understanding the main triggers for cramps is most important. A timely diagnosis of any underlying condition helps you manage the condition better. A pregnancy test is the most accurate way to distinguish between PMS symptoms and those of early pregnancy.

Tracking your symptoms might also be useful for catching any changes in your usual pattern. Visit the doctor if you have any concerns or questions about any of your symptoms.


1. Can cramping from your period kill you?

Although they do not result in other medical issues, menstrual cramps can be annoying to social, professional, and educational activities. However, some disorders linked to menstrual cramps can be problematic. For instance, endometriosis can impact fertility.

2. What kind of period pains are normal?

When should I be concerned if I am experiencing menstrual cramps?

Most women experience cramping and bloating as usual signs of their monthly periods. But if the pain is severe, accompanied by profuse bleeding, a fever, or feels abruptly worse than it did previously, it is necessary to consult a doctor.

3. What are cramps without a period?

Although it may not always be your period, many women have frequent abdominal pain that seems like cramps and period pain. Your ovulation, constipation, or excessive stress could all be contributing factors to these uncomfortable sensations.