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  • Writer's pictureGrace Killpack

Morning Sickness

Updated: May 3, 2019

At least 50% of pregnant women will suffer through nausea and vomiting or “morning sickness” typically in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, sometimes even longer. Most women report nausea being worse upon waking in the morning when they haven’t eaten for several hours during sleep, but some experience nausea and/or vomiting throughout the day or evening. Some find comfort in eating bland foods like crackers and potatoes, while citrusy fruits like lemons and oranges can alleviate some of the queasiness and nausea. Fresh ginger or ginger ale is probably one the most well known home remedies for morning sickness.

Unfortunately some women experience excessive vomiting termed hyperemesis gravidarum, where keeping anything down is almost impossible. This condition can be a serious problem due to dehydration and may require hospitalization and medical treatment. It is important to stay hydrated even if that means taking small sips of fluids every few minutes. Bland soups like potato soup or broth can also be sipped regularly to ensure you are staying hydrated as well as having some carbohydrate in your tummy to help settle hunger, which can often times trigger nausea.

It is not exactly known what causes morning sickness but some theories include: changes in hormone levels, lack of bile, fatigue and high stress, and emotional factors. Western medical doctors will often recommend antiemetics to women suffering from severe morning sickness. Some combine these with sleeping medications to help ensure the mother gets adequate sleep to ensure both the health of mom and baby.

Some of the most common alternative treatments for morning sickness are ginger tea, acupuncture, acupressure wrist bands, and Vitamin B6 supplement. Acupuncture has been shown to be a safe and effective treatment for nausea during early stages of pregnancy, based on a research involving 593 women who were under 14 months pregnant. You can find that report here.

If you are one of the many women suffering through morning sickness, please make sure you always stay hydrated. Listen to your body. Make sure to have small regular snacks, even if it is a few nuts, raisins or a piece of fruit to keep your blood sugar from dipping too low. If you can stomach it, try 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a cup of hot water with honey, ginger tea, chamomile tea, or some fizzy water with lemon juice. Rest is also so beneficial for you and your developing baby. If you feel like going to bed at 8pm instead of your normal midnight schedule, then go to bed at 8pm if possible. Your body is going through a lot of changes, recharging it with proper sleep is crucial. Lastly, if at any time you start feeling dizzy or lightheaded, extremely thirsty and dry lips, or have decreased urine, please contact your doctor right away. You may be severely dehydrated and need to get fluids intravenously (IV line).

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