Sickness... it Happens
Nausea and vomiting during pregnancy are not uncommon and can be one of the first signs that you are pregnant. This nausea and vomiting is called morning sickness. More than 50% of all pregnant women will experience morning sickness during the first few months of pregnancy. The sad trick is that ‘morning’ sickness can occur throughout the day and even last all day in some cases. Morning Sickness usually starts at about 6 weeks of pregnancy and is at its worst at about 9 weeks, then usually stops at around 12 weeks . If you experience morning sickness – tell your doctor. No one is quite sure what causes nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, but it most certainly has much to do with physical changes taking place in your body. The fluctuations in estrogen and human chorionic gonadotropin hCG), a new and enhanced sense of smell and sensitivity to odors, a sensitive stomach, and stress are also contributors. Many doctors think morning sickness is a good sign because it means the placenta is developing well. Morning sickness can affect anyone who is pregnant, but will be more likely if you currently experienc nausea and vomiting while not pregnant (motion sickness, migraines, triggers like smells or taste, among others); you’re pregnant with twins or multiples or a girl; you have a family history of morning sickness.
12 | Oh BABY!
To help alleviate morning sickness symptoms: • Soda crackers and dry toast when you first wake-up; • Eat small meals throughout the day; • Eat a small snack before bed; • Eat foods high in protein and complex carbohydrates – peanut butter on apple or celery, nuts, cheese, crackers, milk, cottage cheese, and yogurt; • Ginger products – ginger tea, ginger candy, ginger ale; • Avoid large meals – snack every 1 to 2 hours; • Drink plenty of fluids; avoid dehydration no matter the weather • Try acupressure wristbands; • Keep air conditioning on and air circulating; • Get plenty of rest – take naps – get a good night’s sleep; • Sniff lemons; • Salty chips can often settle your stomach; gelatin and broth – bland foods can also soothe an upset stomach; • Take your prenatal vitamins at night; increase vitamin B6 in your diet by eating whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes. • Do not lie down after eating; do not skip meals; avoid spicy foods. A condition to watch out for is hyperemesis gravidarum. This is a condition that requires medical attention – call your doctor – see your doctor. Hyperemesis gravidarum is characterized by excessive and severe nausea, vomiting, pain or fever with vomiting, dizziness, a racing heart, blood in your vomit, and weight loss. A severe case of hyperemesis gravidarum can often require a stay in the hospital so the mom-to-be can receive intravenous fluids and nutrition.