Cervix Check: What To Know When You’re 4 Weeks Pregnant

A cervix changes its nature in being high or low, soft or firm during various stages of a woman’s life. During the follicular phase, the body prepares the uterine lining for a fertilized egg to attach. Since estrogen levels are low, the cervix feels firm, like an unripened fruit. But in the early stage of pregnancy cervix is always soft. Measuring your cervix at home to know if you’re pregnant isn’t reliable, so instead, use a pregnancy test to determine your pregnancy. Sometimes, irregular periods and a false negative on a pregnancy test could also give a mistaken pregnancy idea. In such cases, a blood test is the only sure way to know.

A cervix acts as a canal connecting the lower part of your uterus to your vagina, situated deep inside the body.

Be it before periods or during pregnancy, a cervix changes its position many times. It might be situated high or low and could be firm or soft according to what a woman is experiencing or how her body is changing.

How does the cervix feel in early pregnancy?

When you’re in the early stage of pregnancy, your cervix undergoes various changes. While tracking changes in the cervix is one way to know about your pregnancy, it’s not always a foolproof plan to use.

When ovulating, the cervix rises to a higher level in the vagina. But your cervix would be lower in the vagina when you are going through periods.

Another sign people use to identify their pregnancy is to see if the cervix is hard or soft during pregnancy.

If you haven’t conceived, the cervix will feel firm before you get your period, something like an unripened fruit. But if you do get pregnant, it should feel really soft.

A cervix goes through four distinct phases: softening, ripening, dilation, and postpartum repair.

A woman is holding a cardboard model of a cervix over her own, to show how the cervix changes during pregnancy.

In early pregnancy terms softening can be defined as the first measurable decline in the tensile strength or tissue compliance compared to nonpregnancy.

It begins by day 12 of a 19-day gestation in the first trimester. It is considered unique from the subsequent two phases because it’s a relatively slow and incremental process taking in a progesterone-rich environment.

Softening of the cervix is followed by ripening which occurs in days preceding birth in women and can be characterized by maximal loss of tissue compliance and integrity.

The last change in the cervix happens in the postpartum phase, when repairs start taking place as tissue integrity and competency recover.

When you get closer to ovulation, the cervix feels soft, similar to your vaginal wall, because of extra estrogen and increases blood flow to your uterus around ovulation.

Then when the egg is released, the cervix gradually hardens again.

When does a cervix feel hard?

There are various instances when a cervix might feel tight or hard, which are as follows:

Follicular phase

This phase begins on the first day of a menstrual period and ends when you start to ovulate. During this, the egg-containing pods called follicles ripen, and one of the eggs matures.

It’s also when your body prepares the uterine lining for a fertilized egg to attach. Estrogen levels are low during this time, so the cervix feels firmer, and it will make things softer as your menstrual cycle progresses.

Luteal phase

This is a phase when the egg starts traveling down the fallopian tube and ends when the next period begins.

The luteal phase is crucial as it is when your body is prepared for pregnancy. This takes place in the second half of the menstrual cycle, starts after ovulation, and ends on the first day of the period.

The estrogen levels decrease, but progesterone remains to keep the uterine lining thick should a fertilized egg implant.

Does a low hard cervix mean no pregnancy?

A woman who recently missed her period is now confused as to whether she's pregnant or not

There’s science backing up the claim that when a woman is pregnant, her cervix is high, soft, and open, indicating a fertile cervix.

But when there’s no sign of pregnancy, the cervix is low, firm, and closed and is considered not a fertile sign. It could be that you haven’t ovulated yet or have already ovulated.

Indeed, four weeks of pregnancy can be too early to say one is pregnant without taking a pregnancy test based on how a cervix feels.

Sometimes, periods could also get delayed, and a woman could miss a month of her periods, which could create this misunderstanding.

If you base your pregnancy theory on four weeks of duration based on an at-home cervix exam, then there’s no guarantee that it is authentic.

While some women try to detect their pregnancy based on a daily cervix examination at home and try to notice the differences in it to determine pregnancy, it’s not considered a reliable test.

The position of your cervix may be different based on the position of your body while you’re checking the cervix or if you’ve recently had sex.

The only way to ensure your pregnancy in the early stage, such as the first two months, is to get a pregnancy test done. Even early pregnancy tests can be taken before your period is due, but results are more accurate the longer you wait.

Although getting a fake positive is possible, pregnancy tests can’t always be trusted a hundred percent. To be genuinely sure of pregnancy is to get a blood test done.

How do I detect early pregnancy?

A young woman is lying down on her bed feeling pregnancy-like symptoms like nausea.

Other than noticing how your cervix has changed and doubting how it changes during pregnancy, other signs could also be present if you want to ensure you’re pregnant.

Sometimes due to missed or irregular periods and false pregnancy tests, there could be a false pregnancy too.

While the pregnancy hormone hCG is taking its time to build and become stronger, if you’re actually pregnant, take notice of these early signs:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Sore breasts
  • Tiredness
  • Frequent urination
  • Constipation
  • Increased vaginal discharge
  • An aversion to certain smells
  • Strange cravings

FAQs

How does a cervix feel at 4 weeks pregnant?

During early pregnancy, the cervix feels soft and rises up. Cervix would also be soft as it will contain more blood due to rising estrogen levels in the body.

Is a low cervix good for pregnancy?

If you have a shorter cervix earlier in your pregnancy, the natural shortening that happens as the weeks pass may make it too short, too early – resulting in premature birth or premature labor. It can even cause miscarriage.

The leading cause of it could be cervical insufficiency, also known as an incompetent cervix, caused by trauma to the area, damage during a difficult birth, exposure to a hormonal drug, or cervical rupture.

Getting a transvaginal ultrasound is one way to diagnose it, and treatment options include getting a cervical cerclage, progesterone treatment, and bed rest.

How soon will a pregnancy tests read positive?

When taking a home pregnancy test, it can be positive as early as 10 days after conception.

However, sometimes the test could be wrong even if the possibility is relatively low, and other times it could be a false alarm due to irregular periods.

A blood test will give you a more accurate result if you feel confused.

To summarise

The condition of a cervix being soft or firm isn’t always a sure telltale of whether you’re pregnant.

Until you confirm your pregnancy through a blood test, it’s better to take precautions and take care of yourself by taking necessary vitamins, eating proper food, staying well hydrated, getting enough rest, and avoiding alcohol and drugs.

A pelvic exam can also help rule out the possibility of unwanted tissue growth and such related dangers.

As a writer for 1happykiddo, Saumya wants to help new parents and older siblings help raise the newest member added to the family. Her parenting tips come from her experience of being 15 years older than her youngest sibling. When not writing, you can find her reading novels, traveling, and cooking nutritious meals.

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