Morning sickness (which isn’t confined to just mornings) is an extremely common pregnancy condition, but it certainly doesn’t feel normal. It seems that anything and everything – or even nothing at all – sets it off. You’re searching for the restroom, the second you enter a place you’ve never been. And it strikes, without warning, at some of the most inconvenient times. Thankfully, there are some things that expectant moms can do to kick morning sickness to the curb. The following 10 are just some of the most popular.
1. Track Your Triggers
While short and infrequent bouts with morning sickness may not warrant much investigative work, those that suffer from either regular or serious morning sickness may benefit from a trigger journal. When you get hit with a wave of sickness, try to pin down what you see, smell, taste, or feel. Is it the flickering lights causing you to feel nauseous? Is it the smell of your partner as they kiss you goodbye each day that sets you off (perhaps cologne or perfume)?
2. Avoid Trigger Items
Once you’ve identified any possible trigger items, you’ll want to avoid them as much as possible – at the very least, find ways to work around them. For example, you can’t quite stop the garbage truck from driving by your house during breakfast every Thursday. What you CAN do is leave before the truck is supposed to arrive. Have breakfast out with friends. Try that new waffle place down the street. Or go grab yourself a nice, hearty breakfast burrito. Whatever suits your fancy.
3. Take Your Time in the Morning
If you’re one of the “lucky” ladies that only gets sick in the morning – or if your sickness starts out in the morning – try to avoid rushing yourself out of bed. Sit up, eat a few crackers, let them digest. Then slowly move to the edge of your bed. See how you feel. If you’re still tolerating the movement, you can try to stand up. If, after doing so, you need to sit back down, do it. A lot of times, just giving your body a chance to adjust to changes in position can make all the difference. Crackers – a nice, bland food – can also help.
4. Always Carry a Stash of Food
Food might be the last thing you want to think about when you’re feeling nauseous, but morning sickness can sometimes be brought on by hunger. To avoid this issue, always keep a light snack in your purse or handbag. We highly recommend either pretzels or crackers, both of which are bland and easy to digest; they also have a way of easing the queasies. You might also want to keep some in your nightstand or next to your bed for those morning bouts of sickness.
5. Stay Hydrated (Of Course!)
Staying hydrated might sound like common sense, but when you’re constantly throwing up, it can be hard to tell if you’re getting enough fluids. Know what the warning signs of dehydration are (dry mouth, dark or pungent urine, headaches, dizziness, dry skin, fatigue, etc.) and attack them, the second you notice them.
If you are doing a lot of throwing up, or you seem to have a hard time keeping anything down, you may want to consider adding something with electrolytes into your daily regimen. Sports drinks are often recommended, but remember that these can be high in sugar, and that may make them unsuitable for mothers who either have or are at risk for gestational diabetes.
6. Hot or Cold
It’s interesting how temperature can make such a difference to a morning sickness sufferer! And it can affect each mom-to-be differently. So, if something isn’t settling right with your stomach, try consuming it either hot or cold. If hot or cold food seems to be setting you off, try consuming your drinks and food when they are closer to room temperature. (Note that frozen fruit, ice chips, and popsicles can also help you increase your fluid intake.)
7. Try a Little Alternative Medicine
Although there is no scientific evidence to support that alternative medicine practices such as acupuncture and hypnotherapy actually work for morning sickness, they won’t do you any harm. Some report – at the very least – a possible placebo effect. Others will swear by it. And, being that it won’t harm you or baby, you don’t have much to lose and everything to gain.
8. Practice Some Homeopathy
Some moms find that homeopathic methods, such as carrying around essential oils to ward off unpleasant scents, helps. To our knowledge, there is no scientific evidence to back their claims, but it certainly makes sense! Peppermint, lemon, and orange are some of the most commonly used oils, but feel free to experiment with blends and other scents that seem appealing or refreshing to you. Just make sure you don’t overdo it (essential oils are extremely powerful), otherwise, you may make your morning sickness worse.
9. Add a Slice of Ginger
Ginger is well-known for its ability to ease upset stomachs, and you can put it in almost anything – tea, smoothies, juices, sauces, soups, and so much more! Now, some people do have a genuine sensitivity to ginger, and therefore cannot consume it, but if it doesn’t cause any digestive issues for you, feel free to give this home remedy a try!
10. Try the Strange and Unusual
Sometimes morning sickness makes absolutely no sense. As such, it stands to reason that some of the remedies might not make sense. One mom found that Barbie toothpaste kept her from feeling sick, but regular toothpaste set her off. Another found that flat, room temperature Coca-Cola helped to ease her upset stomach. So, if someone tells you a wives’ tale, if you hear a crazy remedy, it might be worth trying, as long as it won’t harm you or the baby.
Please note that morning sickness is different from hypermesis gravadium, which is a very serious form of morning sickness. If you continue to suffer from morning sickness, or if you experience any form of dehydration, weight loss, or concerns over malnutrition, please speak to your doctor about medication or other forms of treatment.