Everyone who wants to start a family and have kids knows how beautiful and simultaneously scary pregnancy can be both for the mother and the father. It is definitely a lot of work, a lot of physical and mental discomfort and is eventually, as almost every woman I’ve ever asked says, all worth it in the end.
However, even for those who do want kids, unplanned pregnancies can be either a blessing or a curse because they can not only cause a lot of emotional distress to the woman but can also hinder the emotional growth and attention needed for the child/children you already have.
If you thought unplanned pregnancies were scary enough, you’re really in for a surprise because there exist women who were not aware that they were pregnant either a few months before their due date or when they actually went into labour! Sounds unbelievable? Well, it’s 100 percent true. The scientific term for such cases is called “Cryptic Pregnancy” and it’s not as rare as you might think.
To the inexperienced bystander, this might seem like something inherently sinister or evil because to most of us, this goes beyond logic and reasoning, but there is a perfectly logical explanation for cryptic pregnancies. One that does not give way to inane paranormal explanations or gives way to women experiencing it being ridiculed for ratings in shows such as “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant.”
According to HuffPost writer, Jena Pincott in her article on the issue states that , “Among pregnant women, 1 in 450 doesn’t know her status until week 20 or later (more than halfway through the pregnancy), and 1 in 2,500 is oblivious until she actually goes into labor.”
That’s officially insane!
And although it might seem to be the case, no, women who experience this bizarre condition are not mentally unstable. So, why do they never catch on to being pregnant? Well as per the article, cryptic pregnancies are harder to identify because the woman experiencing them may not show any of the normal symptoms of pregnancy such as nausea, bloating, pains or even an increase in belly size. Many cases report that even if they did showcase certain symptoms, the pregnancy tests came back negative and they would still have their periods which is a sure fire way for many women to ensure they aren’t with child.
What is the main cause of this?
While reasons such as the woman not being regular in doctor visits or having medical issues that may cover the symptoms of a pregnancy are good enough, scientifically, the presence of a fetus might be missed in a pregnancy test because of a little hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin or HCG. This hormone is the signal a fetus gives out to the mother’s system to start sending out resources and nutrition for the baby to grow and also is what registers a pregnancy in a pregnancy test.
This might also be why a woman experiencing a cryptic pregnancy does not feel any movement from the fetus.
However, if a baby produces small or limited amounts of HCG, this might not be registered as quickly as one would like. This is also why most babies that are born this way are smaller than normal pregnancies and to everyone who thinks cryptic pregnancies must be a breeze because they simply pass these women by. You’re wrong!
The women might not be aware that something is going on but their bodies are still going through the entire process of bringing a child to term and there are many dangers associated with not knowing that one is pregnant. Both to the mother and the child.
So, how can one establish whether or not they might be experiencing a cryptic pregnancy?
Well, if they have a long history of irregular periods, if they experience light spotting and discharge that can be mistaken for a period, if they are diagnosed with Poly-cystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and have been told they are unlikely to have children and lastly, if they do not exhibit any of the more obvious signs of pregnancy.