5 Ways to Deal with Morning Sickness
Approximately 70 percent of women experience morning sickness, an unpleasant symptom of early pregnancy that includes nausea and vomiting. It may come as a surprise for some expecting moms that morning sickness isn’t actually restricted to the morning. Some moms-to-be may experience morning sickness at night, while others experience all day nausea. If you’re feeling queasy during your first trimester, you may start to wonder, “How long does morning sickness last?” Morning sickness can start as early as six weeks into pregnancy and tends to peak around the eighth or ninth week. It usually subsides as you enter the second trimester.
From sticking to bland foods to using essential oils, here are our remedies and suggestions to help beat morning sickness:
1. Find foods that work for you
There’s no hard-and-fast rule for how to get rid of morning sickness, so it’s important to figure out which foods provide relief and which foods make your nausea worse. Crackers, pretzels, and other bland carb-rich foods may be a good place to start, as they tend to settle the stomach. Some moms find that cold foods, like ice pops or fruit, do the trick.
2. Start small
Forget the “three square meals a day” approach. Some moms-to-be find the best way to prevent morning sickness is to graze throughout the day. Overeating can send your digestive system into overdrive, making you feel queasy. Similarly, an empty stomach can lead to nausea because stomach acid irritates the stomach lining when there’s no food for it to feast on. If you find a food that you can keep down, make sure to keep small quantities in your purse, at your desk or readily available to munch on periodically throughout the day.
3. Don’t underestimate the power of ginger
There’s a reason your mom would give you ginger ale as a kid when you experienced an upset stomach; studies have shown ginger to be a natural stomach soother. One way to reduce the unpleasantness of morning sickness is by adding ginger to your tea, sipping on ginger ale, or using ginger essential oils. Check out the variety of ginger products like chewable tablets at your local pharmacy that can help as well.
4. Take a whiff of something fresh
Whether it’s coffee brewing in the office or your co-worker’s perfume, morning sickness is often associated with certain odors. Estrogen is the hormone that’s responsible for your sense of smell, so it’s no surprise that expectant moms are hyper sensitive to scent during pregnancy. Carrying items with scents you enjoy, like a bottle of lemon juice or a sprig of rosemary, and taking a quick whiff, can provide relief when you can’t escape the smell causing your queasiness. Pro Tip: there is nothing fresher than fresh air, so be sure to get outside for at least a few minutes a day to help calm down both you and your stomach.
5. Stay hydrated
Food isn’t the only way to deal with morning sickness. Although it can feel like a challenge to drink the recommended eight glasses of water when you’re dealing with all-day morning sickness, dehydration can make matters worse. Salty foods, which can help settle the stomach, can increase your thirst. Some moms-to-be prefer to eat ice chips or sip on hot beverages, like decaffeinated teas, throughout the day. If you find it easier to digest liquids, drink simple fruit smoothies that are easy on the stomach and help you get the daily calories you need.
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution to get rid of morning sickness, but know that the queasiness won’t last forever. If you experience severe morning sickness that interferes with your ability to work or affects your day-to-day activities, consult your doctor.