Ease the quease
Morning sickness is often one of the first signs of pregnancy. So what causes it? During the first trimester, a rise in hormone levels (progesterone and oestrogen) causes your sense of taste to change and makes your sense of smell more acute. For many women, this leads to common morning sickness symptoms of nausea and vomiting. Stress and anxiety may also play a role in this hypersensitivity.
Morning sickness remedies – in short there is no quick fix – other than once your baby is born! Here are some tips to help you survive though:
- Eat frequent, small meals. Taking little meals throughout the day will help keep your blood sugar levels steady and keep your stomach filled to minimise that queasy feeling.
- For breakfast, opt for slow-release carbohydrates (whole grain cereals & breads; eggs on toast, etc.).
- Snack smart. Eat foods such as crackers, wholegrain toast, a hot baked potato, cooked pasta, cooked rice or fruit.
- Avoid rich and greasy foods which may sit in the stomach longer.
- Get enough sleep – Sleep helps your body rest, renew itself, and helps relax you. Women who don’t get enough rest may experience worse nausea.
- Avoid stress, if you do experience nausea and vomiting during your pregnancy, you want to be able to manage it and being stressed isn’t going to help.
- Get out of bed slowly. An abrupt change from lying flat to standing increases the feeling of dizziness.
- Go easy on spicy foods. Dishes prepared with peppers and garlic may aggravate your pregnancy nausea.
- Reduce smells. Keep your kitchen well ventilated to exhaust lingering cooking odours. Try eating cold foods as they have less odour and may be easier to swallow.
- Drink water or suck on ice. This helps you avoid dehydration if you’ve been vomiting. Contact your doctor if you vomit more than twice daily.
- Exercise. It will help you relieve the stress that may be contributing to your morning sickness and may also help you sleep better at night.
- Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about your morning sickness, there may be other options you had not thought of such as anti-nausea medication that is safe through pregnancy.