How to Relieve Morning Sickness in Pregnancy
How common would you say is morning sickness in pregnancy? Very common, considering that approximately 50% of all pregnant women experience some degree of nausea and vomiting between the 6th and 12th weeks of pregnancy. Although it's called morning sickness, it can occur at any time of the day or last throughout the day.
Signs and Symptoms of Morning Sickness in Pregnancy
The most common signs and symptoms are:
- nausea, which is usually worse on an empty stomach and is often triggered by the smells of certain foods or perfumes;
- aversions to some foods and cravings for others;
- a metallic taste in the mouth;
- a feeling of hunger even when feeling nauseous;
- and relief from nausea by eating.
Abnormal and Severe Nausea
Abnormal vomiting - severe, continual nausea and vomiting after the 12th
week occurs in approximately 1 in 300 pregnancies. This is called
hyperemesis gravidarum, and it can result in dehydration, acidosis,
malnutrition and substantial weight loss. If the condition persists, it
can endanger the fetus.
The reason for abnormal or severe nausea
is not clear, but an association has been made between it and very high
levels of the hormone estrogen and chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG), a
hormone produced by the placenta that increases in quantity until the
end of the first trimester.
Keep in mind that morning sickness usually doesn't last beyond the first
thirteen weeks of pregnancy. If you suffer from persistent nausea or
vomiting later in pregnancy, consult your doctor. With appropriate
treatment, the prognosis is good.
Causes Of Morning Sickness in Pregnancy
There doesn't seem to be a consensus over the causes of morning sickness in pregnancy.
Interestingly, morning sickness is
one of those conditions that seems to be very much related to the nutritional
status of the mother. It seems that those whose nutritional status is
less than optimum suffer much more than those who are well nourished.
women are worried about taking nutritional supplements when they become
pregnant, but that is exactly the time you really need to make sure you do.
After all, you're building a baby as well as maintaining your health.
Also a difficulty in maintaining blood sugar levels even has been thought to be one of the causes of morning sickness in pregnancy.
How to Relieve Morning Sickness in Pregnancy
- Keep crackers or whole wheat toast near your bed and eat before arising.
- Eat small, frequent meals and snack on whole-grain crackers with nut butters (but not peanut butter) or cheese. It helps to keep some food in the stomach at all times and it also keeps blood sugar levels normal.
- Always eat breakfast, preferably containing some protein foods such as yogurt or eggs.
- Do not go without food or drink because of the nausea.
- Do not sit up or get out of bed too quickly.
- Avoid high-fat junk food containing a long list of additives and preservatives.
- Decrease you intake of dried fruit or undiluted fruit juice, both of which provide concentrated sugar that can cause your blood sugar level to drop.
- Drink plenty of water between meals.
- Avoid or decrease your intake of coffee and tea, because they might play havoc with your blood sugar levels.
- Try food-combining techniques - avoid combining protein with starch,
starchy vegetables or processed sugary foods or drinks in the same meal.
Foods and Supplements that can help with Morning Sickness in Pregnancy
- Several clinical studies have proven the efficacy of ginger to reduce the severity of the nausea and the numbers of attacks of vomiting. In these studies, ginger root powder at a dose of 250 mg four times a day was used. You can take it in capsules or as a tea.
- Other beneficial herbs include catnip, dandelion, camomile, peppermint, and red raspberry leaf. Avoid any other botanical medicines in the fir trimester apart from these.
- Try using Nux vomica, a homeopathic remedy that is good for nausea.
- Prenatal multivitamins are needed to supplement even a healthy diet. Multivitamins decrease nausea and vomiting.
- Pyridoxine (vitamin B6) has been proven to relieve nausea and vomiting - try 25 mg every 8 hours or 50 mg twice a day. Taken along with ginger has been proven to be even more effective.
- Magnesium supplements have also been effective - try 200 to 500 mg once a day.
- Vitamin K and C are effective clinically when used together. Ninety-one percent of patients in one study had complete remission within 72 hours. Both vitamins alone show little effect.
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