How To Help The Nausea During Pregnancy

When To See A Doctor

Tips to Naturally Treat First Trimester Nausea

Seek medical advice if:

  • You are unable to keep any food or liquid down for more than 12 hours.
  • Nausea and vomiting turn severe.
  • You experience infrequent urination or pass dark color urine.
  • You feel dizzy when standing.
  • Lose weight suddenly.
  • You feel like your heart is racing or pounding.
  • You have abdominal or pelvic pain.

Morning sickness is normal during pregnancy and may not affect your baby. It may also not have any long-term effects on you. It is temporary, but the feeling might be frustrating. Taking certain home remedies, such as the ones mentioned in this post, might help.

However, it is always good to check with your doctor before trying any of these herbal remedies or alternative treatments for nausea and vomiting.


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Small Frequent Meals/snacks May Be Tolerated Better

When youre actually nauseous or experience nausea frequently, you may be better off eating smaller meals or more snack-like meals. For me that meant a lot of snack plates or toast.

Your protein needs increase during pregnancy , so try to add protein at *most* of your mini meals throughout the day.

Mini meals that can help deal with pregnancy nausea:

  • Yogurt with granola
  • Whole grain pasta and meatballs with sauce
  • Lentil or chickpea pasta
  • Cottage cheese and fruit

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How To Avoid Nausea And Morning Sickness

  • If you feel sick first thing in the morning, give yourself time to get up slowly. If possible, eat something like dry toast or a plain biscuit before you get up.
  • Get plenty of rest and sleep whenever you can. Feeling tired can make the sickness worse.
  • Eat small amounts of food often rather than several large meals, but dont stop eating.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Ask those close to you for extra help and support.
  • Distract yourself as much as you can. Often the nausea gets worse the more you think about it.
  • Avoid foods and smells that make you feel worse. It helps if someone else can cook. If not, go for bland, non-greasy foods, such as baked potatoes, pasta and milk puddings, which are simple to prepare.
  • Wear comfortable clothes. Tight waistbands can make you feel worse.

Risk Factors For Morning Sickness

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It’s thought hormonal changes in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy are probably one of the causes of morning sickness.

But you may be more at risk of it if:

  • you’re having twins or more
  • you had severe sickness and vomiting in a previous pregnancy
  • you tend to get motion sickness
  • you have a history of migraine headaches
  • morning sickness runs in the family
  • you used to feel sick when taking contraceptives containing oestrogen
  • it’s your first pregnancy
  • you’re obese
  • you’re experiencing stress

Visit the pregnancy sickness support site for tips for you and your partner on dealing with morning sickness.

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Treatments For Morning Sickness

Unfortunately, there’s no hard and fast treatment that will work for everyones morning sickness. Every pregnancy will be different.

But there are some changes you can make to your diet and daily life to try to ease the symptoms.

If these do not work for you or you’re having more severe symptoms, your doctor or midwife might recommend medicine.

My Personal Morning Sickness Experiences

For my first pregnancy I had morning sickness for exactly the first three months. Although it wasnt MORNING sickness, it was evening sickness. I would be fine all day until dinner, then throw up. It really wasnt all that terrible. Annoying, but pretty predictable and once I threw up Id feel ok again.

My second pregnancy was way more tough. The first 3 months I was nauseous all the time, but never threw up. Which seems to just make the nausea go on and on. Unless I chewed gum. For some reason the sweetness would put me right over the edge and would immediately be running to the bathroom to puke. And I have a massive gum chewing addiction, so that was a bit rough.

Then after a full trimester of relief, the nausea came back for my entire 3rd trimester! I didnt even know that was possible until I experienced it. But I found that it is actually quite normal to have 3rd trimester morning sickness.

My second pregnancy gave me the opportunity to try out all kinds of methods to ease nausea.

Even though you may not be able to completely eliminate nausea in pregnancy, it is so helpful to have multiple tools to relieve or reduce the debilitating symptom of nausea.

Read Also: Is It Ok To Use Vagisil While Pregnant

Possible Causes Of Morning Sickness

The cause of morning sickness remains a mystery, but it is thought a combination of physical and metabolic factors play a significant role, including:

  • High levels of hormones, including oestrogen
  • Fluctuations in blood pressure, particularly lowered blood pressure
  • Altered metabolism of carbohydrates
  • The enormous physical and chemical changes that pregnancy triggers.

Keep Your Blood Sugar Balanced By Including Some Protein And Fat

How can I relieve nausea?

Sharp blood sugar fluctuations are another nausea trigger. Once you can tolerate a small amount of carbohydrates, try to follow it with a small portion of protein or fat-containing foods to stabilize your blood sugar, such as nuts, cheese, avocado, Greek yogurt, scrambled eggs, or beef jerky.

Protein at breakfast is especially helpful for maintaining blood sugar balance throughout the day, which can help alleviate nausea.

If eggs or other high-protein foods are unappetizing , try a protein shake. If you can stomach a smoothie, you can pack it full of protein powder to give yourself a bit more of a nutritional boost. I prefer grassfed whey protein or organic pea protein blended up with yogurt, kefir, coconut milk, or almond milk for liquid and 1 cup of fruit for flavor.

For extra staying power, a tablespoon of nut butter or coconut oil, or even half of an avocado, can add healthy fats. You may also be able to tuck in things like greens and collagen powder to lend additional nutrients. Some of my clients have even opened the capsules of their prenatal vitamin into their shake, as this was the only way they could get it down in the first trimester. Grab your blender and experiment.

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Morning Sickness And Hyperemesis Gravidarum


HomePregnancyHubBeing pregnantPregnancy week by weekFinding out youre pregnantEarly pregnancy Morning sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum

Morning sickness is probably caused by pregnancy hormones. The levels of hCG hormone in your body rises quickly during the first few weeks of pregnancy.

Pregnancy sickness is often at its worst when you first wake up, which is why its called morning sickness. However, feeling sick or being sick can happen at any time of day during pregnancy.

Morning sickness is usually worse during the first 12 weeks . It usually clears up by weeks 16 to 20 of your pregnancy, although it can go on for longer for some people.

Morning sickness does not put your baby at any increased risk.

Some people worry because they dont have morning sickness. They may think that their pregnancy is somehow not strong enough or that they are more likely to miscarry. This is not true.

Pregnancy symptoms are different for everyone. Not everyone will feel sick or vomit.

During my first viable pregnancy, one month after a 12-week miscarriage, I experienced no sickness at all. This made me always worry I was going to miscarry again. Thankfully it did not happen, and I have a very healthy and active 18 month old now! My second viable pregnancy was completely the opposite and I still get waves of nausea at 37 weeks.


Keep Your Mouth Squeaky Clean

Regular brushing helps keep your mouth fresh and reduces queasiness in the future. It also decreases the risk of damage to teeth from vomiting.

Brush your teeth or rinse your mouth after each meal and after bouts of vomiting once your tummy has settled a bit. If your usual toothpaste contributes to nausea , ask your dentist to recommend another option or a good rinse. Or use plain water.

Recommended Reading: How To Check Your Stomach For Pregnancy

How To Deal With Pregnancy Nausea

Pregnancy nausea is a beast. As someone who was once on a ton of IV antibiotics and got extremely nauseous, I found pregnancy nausea to be worse. Probably because most people dont talk about being pregnant when they feel the worst. So theres this component of secrecy that makes the nausea SO much harder to cope with.

Things You Can Try Yourself

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If your morning sickness is not too bad, your GP or midwife will initially recommend you try some lifestyle changes:

  • get plenty of rest
  • avoid foods or smells that make you feel sick
  • eat something like dry toast or a plain biscuit before you get out of bed
  • eat small, frequent meals of plain foods that are high in carbohydrate and low in fat
  • eat cold foods rather than hot ones if the smell of hot meals makes you feel sick
  • drink plenty of fluids, such as water
  • eat foods or drinks containing ginger there’s some evidence ginger may help reduce nausea and vomiting
  • try acupressure there’s some evidence that putting pressure on your wrist, using a special band or bracelet on your forearm, may help relieve the symptoms

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What Is Morning Sickness

The feelings of nausea do not happen only in the morning. Most women find they ease as the day goes on, but, for some women, they may continue all day.

Nausea during pregnancy is normally associated with an increase in estrogen levels, low blood sugar counts, and a greater susceptibility to some smells.

The exact reason is unknown, but factors may include:

  • a rise in hormones, especially estrogen, progesterone, human chorionic gonadotrophin , and cholecystokinin, leading to changes in digestive activity
  • a fall in blood sugar, resulting from the placentas need for energy

Another theory on what contributes to nausea in early pregnancy is related to the sense of smell. A womans sense of smell is more sensitive in pregnancy, and this could increase the feelings of nausea.

It is most likely to occur during the first 3 months of pregnancy, and it often subsides once into the second trimester.

Research has suggested that nausea and vomiting during pregnancy are a good sign, and they are

Concerns With Nausea During Pregnancy

If you are experiencing severe nausea and vomiting, and the above treatments do not appear to be helping, contact your doctor for further suggestions. While nausea during pregnancy can be normal, it can also point to a problem that needs to be addressed.Examples of potential conditions seen with severe nausea are:

  • Hyperemesis Gravidarum, which is a medical condition that causes you to lose essential nutrients needed during pregnancy.
  • Molar Pregnancy, which occurs when an abnormal growth of tissue develops within the uterus.

Want to Know More?

Compiled using information from the following sources:

1. Beckmann, C., Ling, F. W., Barzanksy, B. M., Herbert, W., Laube, D. W., & Smith, R. P., Obstetrics and Gynecology . Baltimore, MD: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

2. Mayo Clinic, Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers Inc.

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Lifestyle Changes And Natural Nausea Remedies To Try

Outside of pregnancy, nausea might have you running to the pharmacy for an over-the-counter solution. However, drug choice requires more thought when youre carrying a little one.

Often, pregnant women are able to manage their nausea on their own, according to Rebecca Berens, MD, assistant professor of family and community medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

Home remedies with small, frequent, bland snacks, such as saltine crackers , says Dr. Berens. Hard candies such as peppermints, sour candies, and commercial products such as Preggie Pops can also be effective. Products containing ginger are known to be helpful, such as ginger candies and ginger teas.

Family nurse practitioner and owner of Staunton Primary Care in Cincinnati, Ciara Staunton agrees. She also says that avoiding nausea triggers is important.

Examples of some triggers include stuffy rooms, odors , heat, humidity, noise, and visual or physical motion, says Staunton. Quickly changing positions and not getting enough rest/sleep may also aggravate symptoms. Lying down soon after eating and lying on the left side are additional potentially aggravating factors. She explains that this could slow down digestion and keep food in your stomach for longer.

Heres a checklist of natural remedies to try if you experience nausea while pregnant:

You can also try homeopathic remedies like acupressure, but be sure to seek a practitioner who has experience treating pregnant patients.

Try Salty Sour Or Cold Foods

How to Get Rid of Pregnancy Nausea! TOP 5 TIPS!

Some women find that sour or salty foods help mitigate their nausea, which perhaps explains why pickles are a common pregnancy food craving. In India and Mexico, sweet and sour foods, such as tamarind, are traditionally recommended to ease nausea.

Other options to try include:

  • Lemon water
  • Tangy popsicles
  • Avocado with salt and lemon juice
  • Unsweetened dried cherries

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Sudden Onset Late In Pregnancy

If you experience sudden nausea or vomiting that develops toward the end of your pregnancy, check in with your doctor immediately.

This can be a symptom of severe preeclampsia, which can be life-threatening for both you and your baby. It is diagnosed by screening your urine for protein and taking your blood pressure. An unrelenting headache is another symptom of severe preeclampsia.

If you are concerned about your blood pressure but dont have a blood pressure monitor at home, most retail pharmacies have staff who will check it for free or machines set up in their waiting area for customers to use. This isnt a replacement for your regular doctor but can be used in a pinch if you are concerned and want to check your blood pressure on a whim.

While many women worry about pregnancy-related nausea, it can often be considered a good sign. Since rising HCG levels are linked to a healthy pregnancy, having nausea because of high HCG levels can indicate your pregnancy is going as expected.

How To Ease Nausea While Pregnant

If morning sickness has your stomach in knots, try one of Ms. Costas top tips to help keep things on an even keel.

  • Eat often. An empty stomach can make nausea worse. Eat small meals or snacks that are easy to get down such as a handful of nuts or a few crackers every 1-2 hours.
  • Pick a protein. Keep a supply of high-protein snacks on hand. They offer longer-lasting relief from nausea than foods that are high in carbohydrates or fats, according to another study. Costas favorite picks include yogurt, cottage cheese, milk, nuts and seeds.
  • Go sour for sweet relief. Sour flavors seem to help curb nausea. Try sucking on a citrus slice or a piece of lemon-flavored hard candy.
  • Drink for two. While this isnt as fun as eating for two, staying hydrated during pregnancy can help ease nausea. Keep sliced lemons on hand to squeeze into your water. Or try sipping a little ginger ale or clear soda.
  • Avoid lying down after eating. It can hinder digestion and may make you feel queasy.
  • Wait awhile to brush. Brushing your teeth right after eating can trigger your gag reflex. For best results, try to hold off on brushing for 30 minutes or so after you eat.
  • Avoid strong odors. Odors that might seem innocuous when youre not pregnant may suddenly turn your stomach, thanks to the surging hormones of pregnancy. Try to steer clear of strong or offensive smells in the meantime.
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    What Does Pregnancy Nausea Feel Like

    How pregnancy nausea feels varies among women and can even feel different to the same woman at different times of the day.

    Pregnancy nausea or morning sickness can feel like any of the following:

    • A general, lingering sense of feeling like you need to vomit but without the urgency to do so.
    • A sudden, urgent need to vomit.
    • A feeling that youre hungry but without the ability to stomach anything.
    • Dizziness or weakness.

    Some women experience nausea during pregnancy and never actually vomit, while others vomit several times a day. The vomiting can sometimes provide a reprieve from nausea until it returns.

    Pregnancy nausea is often exacerbated by the intense fatigue experienced during the first trimester.

    Exhaustion and tiredness can even cause nausea in a person who isnt pregnant. So, the fact that women in their first trimester have a double whammy of both exhaustion and nausea can make them compound one another.

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