Pregnant! What's This About Morning Sickness?
By Karen Cook
Congratulations! You're pregnant!
One minute you're overjoyed with your news, the
next you're brought back down to earth with
a thud.And with it,the rude awakening that soon after conception, your body begins undergoing a series of major changes to help prepare it for your baby's growth and development.
Mother Nature loves irony. How else to explain
taking the happiest time in a woman's life and
causing her to become physically ill and miserable?
And, what's with using the term, "morning
sickness"? Actually, the correct term is
"nausea and vomiting of pregnancy". Which is
closer to the truth since the condition can
and will occur anytime of the day.
Facts about the condition:
1. 50-95% of pregnant women suffer from it
2. dehydration can happen in extreme cases
3. occurs in first month of pregnancy
4. continues until 14th-16th week
5. 50% of women will suffer for another month
Although nobody will say for sure what the
definite causes are, the theories are:
1. estrogen level increase
2. low blood sugar
3. increased sensitivity to smells where
many odors instantly trigger the gag-
4. rise in progesterone level . This hormone
helps relax the uterus in order to
prevent early labor but it also relaxes
the stomach and intestines which cause
excess acids in the stomach and slower
5. eating unhealthy foods. Seems the body
has a sure-fire way to make sure you
don't ingest anything not good for you or
6. and this doozy. an increase in human
chorionic gonadotropin! Now you know why
they prefer to call it (hCG) This is a
peptide hormone produced by the embryo
soon after conception and later on by the
placenta. It's role is to maintain
crucial levels of progesterone production
vital in human pregnancies.
7. excess salivation which nauseates some
It's difficult to spend time on the causes
when all you want is relief. As with anything to do with the human body, there's no one-size-fits-all remedy. There will be a period of trial and error as you find what works for you. Of course it goes without saying, you
will be consulting with your doctor/care-provider.
So here are some corrective measures used by many women:
1. eating small, frequent meals. An empty
stomach produces an acid which aggravates
the stomach lining.
2. foods should be high in proteins and
complex carbohydrates. Yogurt, cheese and
eggs for example. Whole-grain breads and
cereals. Don't make the mistake of
thinking of whole-wheat as being whole-
grain. You want the product label to
say " 100% whole-grain". Big difference
and healthy for mother and baby.
3. drink fluids. Dehydration makes
everything worse. Extreme cases need to
be hospitalized. If you can't stomach
fluids, try eating fruit which has high
water content and low acid like grapes
4. ginger (zingiber officinale) The age-old
remedy for upset stomachs. Either
capsules, tea or ginger- snaps, candy.
Try to get ginger ale made with real
ginger. Usually not supermarket brands.
You may have to try the health-food
section in your grocery or an actual
5. brushing teeth after vomiting will
decrease excess saliva and lessen stomach
turmoil. And, prevents tooth decay and
makes you feel better.
6. get proper rest. Fatigue and stress will
cause morning sickness to worsen. If able
to, nap often.
7. stay away from fatty, spicy, rich, acidic
and fried foods
8. eat crackers before getting out of bed.
Get up slowly.
9. take prenatal vitamins later on in the day
10. try vitamin B6
11. microwave cooking produces less odors.
Better yet,have someone else do the
cooking while you,lucky girl,stay away!
12. go smell lemons. Believe it or not,
relief may be found by sprinkling
essential oil of lemon on a handkerchief
and holding it to your nose.
13. warm places can trigger nausea. Try to
stay cool. If not in air conditioning,
install fans around you. Even a battery-
operated hand-held fan can bring relief.
14. if your stomach agrees, eat what you want
when you want it. Your special cravings
are trying to tell you something.
Although it can be downright annoying when well-meaning friends and family tell you, "This too shall pass". Especially when you feel miserable. Usually after the first trimester, you will again be concentrating on
happy, future events.
(c) 2006 Karen Cook
Reference Sources: Wikipedia and Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine
About the Author
Karen Cook works the main desk of her town's Public Library. Her greatest satisfaction comes from researching self-help information to improve her patron's lives. Visit her weblog at http://happilypregnant.blogspot.com
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