Morning sickness is the nauseous feeling commonly experienced during around the 6th week of pregnancy. It can occur at any time of the day, and for most women, it seems to stop after the 12th week of pregnancy. Morning sickness is not harmful to you or your baby, but if you experience excessive vomiting and cannot manage to keep your food down, you may have hyperemesis gravidarum and lack essential nutrients and electrolytes . Inform your doctor when these symptoms appear and discuss possible treatment options.
Why Am I Nauseous?
Blame the increasing hormones, but you’re not alone. More than 50% of pregnant women experience morning sickness. But take heart. Many doctors think morning sickness is a good sign because it means the placenta is developing well.
Prenatal Vitamins can make nausea worse, mostly because of the extra iron. Pair your prenatal vitamins with a light snack before you go to bed.
Morning Sickness Relief
What helps with morning sickness? While not all morning sickness remedies may work for you, there are several options you can try to find some relief.
In the Morning:
Allow yourself plenty of time to get out of bed. If you usually get up at 6:00 a.m., set your alarm for 5:00 a.m. It is a good idea to keep a stash of crackers or dry cereal by your bed so you can put something in your stomach as soon as you wake up. Get out of bed slowly as you start your day.
During the Day:
Eat small meals throughout the day to avoid getting too full or too hungry. Progesterone slows the speed of food passing through your digestive tract. To further prevent your stomach from getting too full or too empty, drink fluids a 1/2 hour before or after meals, but not with meals. Also, make sure to drink fluids throughout the day to avoid dehydration.
Get plenty of rest when you can. This is especially important if you have to get up early in the morning. However, DO NOT take a nap right after a meal because this can increase nausea.
Avoid foods or smells that make your nausea worse, and avoid being in warm places, which can increase your nausea.
In the Evening:
For dinner avoid spicy, greasy foods. Prepare foods that are bland and do not have a strong odor. You may have to avoid cooking for the first trimester.
Most importantly, go to bed early! You need your rest to have the energy to get up early and do it all over again. If you happen to wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, try to eat something small from your bedside stash.
- Cold foods (sandwiches, raw vegetables, salad when properly prepared to prevent listeria)
- Bland foods (chicken soup, broth, plain baked potato)
- Plain vegetables or fruits
- Keep meals small, but eat as frequently as you need
- Foods rich in vitamin B6
Suggested Snacks to Eat
- Lemons (Eat them, suck on them, or sniff them.)
- Ginger (ginger ale soda, ginger tea, ginger jam on toast, ginger snaps)
- Peppermint tea
- Flavored popsicles
Treatments & Supplements
PregEase: natural product is shown to relieve morning sickness and heartburn. Includes a comprehensive formula with vitamins, minerals and herbal ingredients demonstrated to help easy common pregnancy discomforts.
- Delicious, chewable, orange-flavored tablets provide safe and effective relief
- Doctor-designed, natural formula with no artificial dyes, colors or preservatives
- Includes Vitamins B6, B12, calcium carbonate, ginger, and many other ingredients to soothe nausea.
Preggie Pops: lollipops in flavors known to reduce nausea. (Available flavors include ginger, mint, lavender, sour raspberry, sour lemon, and sour tangerine).
- A natural way to ease nausea
- Drug-free and doctor recommended
- Great for labor
- Alleviates dry mouth
- Quick energy boost
Sea-Bands: wristbands that use acupressure pulse points to fight nausea.
- For all forms of nausea, including morning sickness
- No drugs and no side effects
- Used by doctors and hospitals
- The only clinically tested wristband
- One size fits all
Nip the Nausea: Drops flavored with a combination of ginger and lemon, which collectively soothe upset stomachs and reduce nausea symptoms.
Relief Band Device: a device that can be worn continuously for relief of mild to moderate nausea and vomiting associated with pregnancy.
Vitamin B6: Taking Vitamin B6 (50 mg) daily has been shown to help with pregnancy-induced nausea.
Talk with your health care provider about any supplements and treatments for morning sickness. If morning sickness is so severe that you are constantly throwing up and not keeping anything down, consult your health care provider about the possibility of having hyperemesis gravidarum.
Want to Know More?
Compiled using information from the following sources:
Williams Obstetrics Twenty-Second Ed. Cunningham, F. Gary, et al, Ch. 8
American Academy of Family Physicians, https://familydoctor.org