You just found out you’re pregnant! But now you have morning sickness…
You’re not alone. Approximately 70% of women experience nausea and vomiting during the first few months of pregnancy. This is usually caused by increased hormone levels, low blood sugar, or electrolyte deficiency. Contrary to its name, morning sickness can occur day or night at various levels of intensity.
It’s unpleasant. It’s inconvenient. It’s a fact of life for many women.
Although some women rely on medications to relieve their symptoms, natural remedies are becoming more popular as they can be healthier, cheaper, and more convenient. Here are some tips from real mamas who’ve been there and understand what you’re going through.
Avoid Your Triggers
Cooking raw meat, being around foods with strong smells, and eating foods that are spicy, hot, or fatty commonly set off morning sickness in many women. You may even find odd things like the smell from the inside of your dishwasher makes you nauseous. Do yourself a favor and just avoid these things as best you can for a couple of months. Also, you can put some organic baby vapor rub under your nose, especially in the morning, to protect your senses from the smells of the day.
When that sick feeling creeps in, the last thing you want to do is get out of bed or off the bathroom floor. However, some moms have found significant relief in doing yoga, going for a walk, and getting some fresh air. Just try to lightly exercise in any way you can.
Take Care of Yourself
Are you getting enough rest? Probably not, but sleeping an adequate amount of hours each night may reduce your uncomfortable symptoms. When you can’t sleep, distract yourself with a favorite hobby or past time. Your mind is powerful. The more you think about your nausea, the more intense it feels. Give your brain and your body a break. Maintaining a cool temperature may also provide some relief.
To avoid that empty-stomach feeling, which may lead to nausea, keep something in your stomach throughout the day. When you’re out and about, keep some snacks with you in a bag. You can also carry an insulated bottle of refreshingly cold water to help you stay hydrated all day. Sometimes you can’t stop nausea or vomiting after it has already started. In those cases, some things you may want to keep nearby are a hairband, hand towel, change of clothes, mints, toothbrush, toothpaste, and wipes.
Rely On Someone
You’re a strong woman. Everyone knows that. But sometimes it helps to have someone to hold your hair and rub your back during those unfortunate bouts of sickness. Even having a confidant at work can be helpful when you need someone to cover for you or look out for you. It takes strength to trust in and rely on other people, and you have that within you.
Get Your Liquids In
It’s crucial to stay hydrated, especially when you’re feeling nauseous. However, some women can’t keep water down. Some alternative options include Gatorade, ginger ale, Sprite, skim milk, and coconut water. You may also want to try some different teas such as ginger, green, and peppermint. Some of these drinks may actually dehydrate you, but it’s important to consume liquids. Besides, you can also get your water from foods like fruits, vegetables, and broths.
I know, food is the LAST thing you want to think about right now, but trust me, your stomach needs something in it. Some women have found relief with various foods such as peppermint, black beans, and Belvita crackers. Experienced moms swear by a variety of different foods, particularly those that are bland, dairy, cold, sour, salty, alkalizing, or high-protein:
Bland: crackers, plain tortillas, mashed potatoes, rice
Dairy: chocolate milk, ice cream, cheese
Cold: Greek yogurt, smoothies, popsicles, frozen Gatorade, fresh or frozen fruit
Sour: candy, lemons, other citrus fruits
Salty: chips, soup
Alkalizing: watermelon, cucumber, celery, coconut water, lemon, lime, carrots, avocado, garlic, ginger
High-protein: apple sauce, whole wheat toast, brown rice, bananas, peanut butter
Eating something small as soon as you wake up could prevent vomiting when you get out of bed. And remember to keep something in your stomach throughout the day to avoid feeling nauseous later.
Ever heard of Seabands? These bracelets utilize acupressure to prevent nausea and may work for your morning sickness. Essential oils are also “all the rage” nowadays. Ginger, lemon, peppermint, and orange oils have helped some expecting mothers. Prenatal vitamins and vitamin B6 may also provide some relief, but talk to your doctor before taking anything.
Some of these solutions may work for you and some may not. Ultimately, you should listen to your body – what triggers your symptoms and what soothes them. After a little trial and error, you’re bound to find something that works for you. But if your symptoms persist or are severe, you should see your doctor. Remember, morning sickness is only temporary. This will subside in time.