Morning Sickness Remedies
Remedies for Morning Sickness During Pregnancy
Morning sickness is a common side effect of pregnancy, especially in the early months. While not usually a cause for concern, morning sickness can be unpleasant and may even interfere with a pregnant woman's ability to carry out her regular routine. Fortunately, there are a few easy, natural, drug-free remedies you can try that are known to alleviate morning sickness without any risk to the developing fetus.
Eating Small, Frequent Meals and Taking Things Slowly
By eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day, you can help alleviate your nausea. It is best to avoid having your stomach completely empty or completely full, since both can make morning sickness worse. If nausea is worse when you first wake up, try having a box of soda crackers on your nightstand and nibbling on them before you get out of bed. You may also try sipping weak tea. Rising slowly in the morning, instead of jumping out of bed and rushing out the door, will minimize morning sickness (and also lightheadedness).
Getting More Sleep
Getting extra sleep and relaxing more can reduce morning sickness symptoms because the fatigue that is so common in early pregnancy can also contribute to nausea. Taking naps during the day and getting additional sleep each night will help ease morning sickness.
Wristbands can often relieve morning sickness. These special 1-inch elastic bands are worn on both wrists and put pressure on the inner wrist, a pressure point for reducing nausea. Studies have found that pregnant women who wore acupressure wristbands had significantly less frequent and less severe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.
Using Herbal Remedies
An increasing number of pregnant women are turning to herbal remedies to battle morning sickness.
Herbs like chamomile, peppermint, garlic, aloe, echinacea, pumpkin seed, ginseng and raspberry leaf are sometimes used to alleviate the symptoms of morning sickness. Ginger root is another natural remedy becoming increasingly popular. Red raspberry leaves have been found safe to use during pregnancy, as has chamomile, which can also help with gas, bloating and indigestion. While these herbs have been shown to reduce nausea during pregnancy in some women, they must be used with caution.
Avoiding Unpleasant Smells & Foods
A pregnant woman should avoid the sight, smell and taste of displeasing foods that make her queasy. Whenever possible, try to avoid foods and smells that seem to aggravate your nausea, and don't force yourself to eat foods that don't appeal to you.
Taking More Vitamin B6 (and Less Iron)
Make sure you take a prenatal vitamin supplement containing vitamin B6. Research has shown that women who take a multivitamin containing vitamin B6 during the first six weeks of pregnancy experience significantly less nausea than women who don't take a multivitamin. Also, iron supplements (or multivitamins with iron) can contribute to nausea. Occasionally, doctors recommend temporarily discontinuing iron supplements or switching prenatal vitamins to alleviate morning sickness. You should be able to resume taking iron in the second and third trimesters, as long as your morning sickness has disappeared. Remember, don't ever take any medication for morning sickness without first consulting your doctor.
Make sure you get plenty of fluids, especially if you're losing them through vomiting. Milk shakes, smoothies, fruit juices, soups, broths, bouillons and even an occasional popsicle will help you stay hydrated and may also be easier to get down (and keep down) than solid foods. Fresh fruit and some vegetables are high in water content and also make a good, healthy snack.