You’re pregnant – hooray! You feel excited, nervous and – let’s face it – like you want to throw up all the time. Morning sickness can be inaccurate as nausea in pregnancy, especially in the first trimester, can occur at any time of the day. You are growing a little person inside you but that doesn’t mean like you want to feel like you could barf at any second. Here are some helpful things you can do to keep your nausea at bay during pregnancy.
1. Get some sleep.
Staying well rested can help soothe tummy troubles or at least avoid them for a while – you can’t feel like puking when you are asleep. When sleeping, try keeping a couple snacks beside your bed to nibble on in the night if you wake feeling nauseous – something like crackers or a granola bar. When you do get up, do so slowly, as getting up quickly can sometimes cause you to feel nauseous.
2. Try to eat.
This may seem pretty basic, but sometimes nausea in pregnancy can be caused by hunger. Try to eat smaller meals and snack frequently so that you don’t get hungry to the point of nauseous.
Watch what you eat as well – obviously you want to be sure to eat healthy and wholesome foods during your pregnancy but that can seem like a challenge when nothing is sitting quite right in your stomach. Some foods (usually foods that are higher in fat) are harder to digest and may cause your stomach to turn, so try to avoid them when possible.
I’m sure you’ve already found a few foods that make you say “no way!” so work on finding foods that agree with your taste buds and your stomach. Bland foods can be a good place to start: try things like toast and butter, pasta with tomato sauce or applesauce.
3. Take ginger as a supplement.
Many motion sickness pills contain ginger, as it has been known to settle the stomach. In pregnancy there are many ways to get ginger such as infusing it in a tea or taking a ginger supplement. Be sure to consult your health care professional before taking any vitamins or supplements.
4. Take peppermint.
Peppermint has long been touted for its soothing effects on the stomach and is known to aid digestion. It can easily be ingested by infusing your water with some or by making a peppermint tea. Brushing your teeth with mint toothpaste or chewing mint gum can also help you feel less nauseous.
5. Stay hydrated.
It is important to stay well hydrated during pregnancy, which can be difficult if you feel nauseous or are throwing up frequently. Just like with a stomach bug, when drinking try to drink small amounts slowly: this will also help the fluids get absorbed into your system.
Some women find it easier to stomach liquids when they are warm (like one of the ginger or peppermint teas recommended above) while others find an ice-cold beverage more satisfying. Listen to your body and find what works best for you.
For some, bubbles help calm their stomach, and while it is not advised to drink sugary drinks like soda pop, there are bubbly sparkling water alternatives that can go down easily. It is not recommended that pregnant women consume any alcohol when pregnant.
6. Use motion sickness armbands.
There is a pressure point on the inside of your wrist that, when pressure is applied to it, it can help relieve nausea. You can simply apply pressure with your finger or thumb or by purchasing motion sickness armbands to apply the pressure for you.
7. Take medicine.
Medicine can be prescribed by your doctor if you are having difficulty keeping any food or drink down or are finding your nausea is making it next to impossible for you to function normally. The most commonly prescribed medicine for nausea is Diclectin. However, as always before taking this or any medicine during pregnancy, be sure to ask your doctor if this solution is right for you.
8. Take prenatal vitamins.
Prenatal vitamins are very important to take when expecting (as recommended by your doctor) but can also cause a wave of nausea so be sure to never take them on an empty stomach. Try taking your vitamin at different times of the day to see what works best for your body.
9. Watch for triggers.
Watch for triggers and try to avoid them. Do you feel nauseous when you are in a hot and stuffy room? Does it hit you if someone is wearing strong perfume or cologne? Be aware of things that make you feel nauseous and try and avoid them when possible.
Sometimes there are simple solutions like opening a window or removing yourself from smells in the environment, but if you are unable to escape the trigger try sitting down, centering yourself, and breathing deeply.
Unfortunately nausea can be a very common side effect during pregnancy but always try to find the silver lining in the storm cloud – you will have a little one to hold and snuggle when you get through it and trust me you will get through it! Morning sickness is most common in the first trimester of pregnancy so if all else fails there is some hope in the fact that it may go away with time – for most after 14 weeks for some after as long as 20 weeks.
I’m sure you’re asking why, WHY on earth do I feel like tossing my cookies so much now that I’m pregnant!? Well, that super sense of smell you have acquired could be one reason, or sometimes it’s the changing hormones in your body but no matter the reason trying some of the above mentioned techniques can definitely help you on the path to a nausea free pregnancy.
As with any other symptoms you may be feeling throughout your pregnancy if you are ever unsure it’s best to consult your health care provider. These tips are not intended to be substituted for medical advice.