Morning sickness is nausea and vomiting experienced by pregnant women in the early days of pregnancy. Although it is called morning sickness, it can happen at any time of the day and can last all day. It is thought to be caused by surge of pregnancy hormones, such as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and estrogen, low blood pressure, low blood sugar levels, and physical and chemical changes that pregnancy hormones trigger.
Morning sickness starts at about 4 weeks of pregnancy and goes away in the second trimester. About 70 to 85 per cent of pregnant women experience morning sickness to some degree. Symptoms of morning sickness can typically include nausea, loss of appetite, and vomiting, and some women also experience depression and anxiety. Morning sickness is not harmful to pregnant woman or her unborn child.
Morning sickness cannot be avoided, but the symptoms can be minimized by doing certain things. The following tips can help minimize the unpleasant symptoms of morning sickness:
1. Take Enough Rest: Taking rest reduces the intensity of morning sickness by calming down the stress and upset stomach. Getting enough sleep during night, daytime napping, and resting whenever possible helps better cope with morning sickness.
2. Avoid Triggers: Recognizing and avoiding triggers, which brings on nausea will reduce nausea episodes. Some foods with strong aroma or smell can trigger nausea and stomach upset. Avoid cooking, preparing, or ordering spicy and flavored foods with strong smell. This will help you prevent onset of morning sickness.
3. Take A Snack Before Rising: Empty stomach may trigger nausea. Take a light snack before rising from your bed to avoid moving about on an empty stomach. Keep a snack like a dry toast, biscuit, toast with butter, or salty cracker by your bedside to help you eat it before you get up and move.
4. Drink More Water: Drink plenty of water and stay well hydrated to avoid dehydration, because frequent nausea and vomiting leads loss of body fluids and results in dehydration. You can keep yourself well hydrated by drinking plenty of water and other liquids like fruit juices, soups or porridges.
5. Eat Small Meals: Eating small meals can help reduce the chance of nausea and vomiting. Keep your portions sizes small, eat less more frequently, and eat biscuits or ginger crackers in between meals to help avoid nausea and better cope with morning sickness.
6. Try Ginger: Ginger has long been known to reduce abdominal discomfort, aid digestion, and relieve the symptoms of nausea. Eating ginger in any form, such as a piece of raw ginger, cold ginger ale, ginger bread, or ginger cookies will help settle your stomach and ease your sick feeling.
7. Indulge Your Hobbies: Indulging in your hobbies will help you distract from feeling sick. Keep yourself busy by indulging in your favorite activities, such as reading a book, solving a puzzle, watching television or a movie, playing cards, and any other hobby to get some relief from morning sickness.
8. Wear Loose Clothes: Wearing tight and uncomfortable clothes may constrict your stomach, restrict your free movement, and may worsen the symptoms of nausea. Wearing loose and comfortable clothes will help you have fewer symptoms of morning sickness.