In early pregnancy, changes occur in the position and texture of the cervix and the consistency and color of cervical discharge. Tracking these changes can help detect whether a person is pregnant.

The cervix is a circular band of muscle that separates the uterus from the vagina. The cervix changes at different points in the menstrual cycle and throughout the stages of pregnancy.

In this article, we examine how the cervix and cervical discharge change in the early stages of pregnancy and discuss how people can check their cervix for changes.

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The cervix changes the menstrual cycle and early pregnancy, which we discuss in the following sections.


When a person is not pregnant, the position of the cervix changes throughout the stages of the menstrual cycle:

  • During ovulation, the cervix is higher in the vagina.
  • After ovulation and before menstruation, if the person has not become pregnant, the cervix drops lower in the vagina.

Upon conception, the cervix will remain higher in the vagina, with its position being similar to that during ovulation.


The texture of the cervix also changes in early pregnancy due to increased blood flow. The cervix typically feels firm to the touch, like the tip of a nose. However, after conception, the cervix will feel softer.

Cervical discharge

The consistency and color of cervical discharge change in different menstrual cycle stages.

Understanding the typical cervical mucus changes throughout the menstrual cycle can help identify early pregnancy:

  • Immediately after a period, discharge may reduce.
  • A few days after this, but before ovulation, discharge becomes sticky and may appear white or yellow.
  • During ovulation, the discharge will increase and become creamy and opaque.
  • At ovulation, the cervical mucus will be stretchy.
  • After ovulation, cervical mucus will dry up and thicken if the person is not pregnant.

People who conceive during their cycle may notice cervical mucus increasing instead of drying up after ovulation.

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, light bleeding or spotting may occur around the time of implantation, which is generally 1–2 weeks after conception.

Feeling the cervix offers clues regarding early pregnancy, but it is not a sure way to detect pregnancy. Cervical changes may be subtle, and not all people are familiar enough with their cervix to notice them. The only guaranteed way to check for pregnancy is with a pregnancy test.

However, people can check their cervix at home. To do this, they should clean their hands thoroughly before placing a finger into the vagina. The location of the cervix is in the top wall, nearest the stomach, and it should feel like a small bump.

Those trying to conceive may wish to become familiar with their cervical patterns. This may help them better detect changes during ovulation and early pregnancy.

Cervical changes are among the many changes the body undergoes during early pregnancy. While a missed period is often the first indication of pregnancy, other symptoms of early pregnancy include:

These symptoms are not unique to a pregnancy and may be reasonably mild initially. The same symptoms can also appear just before a menstrual period. It is not possible to tell whether a person is pregnant without taking a pregnancy test.

People who think that they might be pregnant should make an appointment with a doctor. They should also talk with a doctor if they miss their period for several months and are not pregnant.

During early pregnancy, it is best to talk with a doctor if cervical discharge is:

  • foul-smelling
  • green
  • bloody due to a cause other than menstruation

Additionally, a person should let their doctor know if they are experiencing vaginal itching or pain. These symptoms can indicate other infections that may affect the cervix.

People can expect their cervix to change throughout pregnancy. During early pregnancy, the cervix will change slightly in position and in how it feels to the touch. Cervical discharge will also change in consistency and color.

During pregnancy, people should see a doctor for any doubts, questions, or concerns.