Morning sickness is a common symptom of pregnancy and typically resolves after the first trimester. The exact cause of morning sickness or why it affects some women and not others is not known, but it may be due to the level of pregnancy hormones in your body and how they affect the area of your brain that causes nausea.
Regardless of the cause, morning sickness can make the first few months of your pregnancy pretty miserable and interfere with your ability to keep up with daily tasks. Your obstetrician can prescribe antiemetic medication for morning sickness, but you may want to try a drug-free remedy first. Here are three natural remedies to consider:
Ginger can combat morning sickness by relaxing the muscles in your intestinal tract. You can buy ginger teabags or make your own tea by infusing fresh ginger with warm water and a little honey. It's best to sip the tea throughout the day as gulping large amounts of fluid can make nausea worse. If you're not a fan of ginger tea, try eating a ginger biscuit first thing in the morning or sucking on a ginger sweet when you feel a bout of sickness coming on.
Vitamin B6 has been shown to be effective at reducing morning sickness, but you should only take supplements with your doctor's approval. Pregnant women should consume between 1.9-2mg of vitamin B6 daily, so if you want to boost your dietary intake of this vitamin, try eating the following foods when you're able:
- Brown rice
Acupressure practitioners believe that putting pressure on a specific area of your wrist can ease morning sickness by triggering your brain to release chemicals that ease nausea. You can try acupressure at home by following these steps:
- Place your middle and index fingers of one hand on the opposite wrist just below the crease line that marks the end of your hand and the start of your wrist.
- Your index finger will be positioned between two tendons, and this is the spot you need to press to reduce morning sickness.
- Use your index finger and press firmly on this spot for up to half a minute whenever you feel nauseous.
- Repeat these steps on your opposite wrist, ensuring you press on both wrists each time you practice this acupressure technique.
Severe or prolonged morning sickness can cause dehydration, so always let your obstetrician know if you're experiencing morning sickness. They can monitor your electrolyte levels and recommend prescription drugs when appropriate. If you have specific questions about dealing with morning sickness or other things related to pregnancy, contact a doctor who specializes in pregnancy like Dr Andrew Foote.