Although referred to as morning sickness, periods of nausea can happen throughout the day while pregnant at any point in pregnancy. It’s suspected that this is due to the increase in hormones estrogen and hCG, especially in the first 4-5 weeks or until 14 weeks (for about 50% to 80% of pregnant people).
Here are our top 10 ways to cope with sickness and nausea:
1. Avoiding smells or foods that you know could be triggering your nausea or reflux. So if you’re at work, maybe you avoid eating in a smaller lunch room until your nausea gets better or if it’s nicer weather, opting to eat outside if that’s an option where you work. At home or when living with other people, trying to keep rooms well ventilated so your house can stay free of, or minimize the cooking odors that day or from lingering in your home the next day (especially when cooking with lots of spices, with fish, or strong scents like garlic).
2. Don’t wait until you’re starving to eat and have several small meals or some in between snacks ready to grab. Also if your nausea is bothering you mostly in the early morning hours, and late or overnight, keeping crackers, pretzels, or another small snack by your bed might be helpful.
3. Minimizing how much you drink during meals but still staying hydrated throughout your day (since dehydration can lead to lots of other unwanted symptoms as well as increase the nausea or vomiting).
4. Sucking or chewing on something: ginger pop, hard candies, something sour, ice chips or popsicles.
5. Eating more dry or plain foods. You can try having some bone broth, raw veggies, some banana with almond butter, or if you’re also craving some more carbs, then having some brown rice, avocado toast, or waffle with peanut butter.
6. Talk to your provider if your nausea or sickness is not improving, getting worse, and is impacting your daily living routines. They may be able to even try a supplement such as vitamin B 6 or other remedies or medications.
Ginger can help settle your stomach. You can try:
- Ginger capsules, candies,
- Sips of Ginger ale made with real ginger
- Ginger tea made from fresh-grated ginger
7. Getting plenty of fresh air, open windowns in your home or work place if you’re able to and go on daily walks outdoors.
8. Eat small frequent meals.
9. Drinking more clear liquids, avoiding having too many caffinated or sugary drinks. Adding in some teas such as: ’stomach ease’ tea, peppermint, lemon, or ginger teas, or sips of gingerale (anything in moderation).
10. take prenatal vitamins on a full stomach. Some doctors might be able to prescribe you chewable options.
*If you’re nauseous or sick longer than you believe is within the norm,
if your symptoms become severe to the point where your quality of life in your daily routine is being affected
*If you’re having extreme symptoms such as:
-unable to keep food or liquids down for more than 24 hours or
-loosing weight (5 lb within 1-2 weeks).
-not urinating very often under 4 times a day,
or urine is dark in color or has an odor.
-having an unpleasant, fruity taste or dry mouth
-dizziness or confusion, then
Please speak to your provider to see if they suspect a diagnosis of
severe dehydration or even hyperemesis gravidarium. Your provider
may have other useful advice or referrals for you and could help
you form a plan to keep you feeling supported, safe and more comfortable.
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Wick, Myra J, MD
MayoClinic: Guide to a healthy Pregnancy 2nd edition, 2018.
This blog is not a substitute for medical advice, please refer to your provider for specific recommendations based on your medical history and circumstances.