Best tips against morning sickness and general pregnancy nausea
Especially during the first weeks after fertilization, many mommies-to-be complain of feeling unwell. Unfortunately, four out of five women suffer from nausea in their first three months of pregnancy. For many, it is the first symptom to experience after having conceived. Maybe you are pregnant and going through your first trimester right now? Find helpful information, tips, and pregnancy hacks for nausea in this post. Learn about some things you can do to help you feel better and find comfort in your everyday life.
The good news right away: The feeling of discomfort and nausea is not just a bad thing but rather a sign that your body is optimally preparing to nurture and grow your baby.
When does morning sickness or general pregnancy nausea occur?
Nausea belongs to some of the earliest symptoms of pregnancy.
Usually, women notice the first signs of nausea around the fifth week of pregnancy. The discomfort usually reaches its peak in the ninth week and subsides between the twelfth and sixteenth weeks.
Even though people usually speak of morning sickness related to pregnancy, the feeling of being sick can occur during any time of the day or even lasts all day for some women.
Causes of pregnancy nausea
Until today, doctors and scientists cannot fully explain what causes pregnant women to experience nausea. Part of a theory explains that women react with discomfort and disgust at certain foods to protect the embryo from spoiled or toxic foods. For example, that would explain the common disgust for cinnamon or nutmeg when pregnant. These two spices would indeed be poisonous in large quantities.
Scientifically spoken, pregnancy-related nausea is caused by the hormones produced by the body after conception, mainly the pregnancy hormone HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin).
HCG is a hormone (“messenger substance”) that is formed by the placenta and that “informs” the body about the pregnancy. In the first couple months after conception, the HCG level rises before it starts dropping again from week ten of pregnancy. For many mommies-to-be, nausea also starts to become less and less from this point on.
The hormone HCG also causes the hormones progesterone and estrogen to be released. These drive the growth of the uterus and ensure its maintenance. Doctors suspect that the hormone estrogen could also be responsible for causing pregnancy nausea. The assumption is that the higher the estrogen level, the more likely the woman is to experience nausea during the pregnancy.
When do I need to see a doctor if experiencing morning sickness?
Often the following tips and pregnancy hacks for nausea help women feel better and get through that first trimester. Many mums-to-be don’t have to throw up either; they just face the feeling of sickness in their stomach.
But if nausea affects your everyday life severely and you have to vomit a lot, you should definitely inform your doctor. Depending on your overall health condition, he may even refer you to the hospital, where the lost fluid will be given to you by an i.v. drip. Fortunately, only a few women struggle with extreme pregnancy nausea (called “Hyperemesis gravidarum”).
Does pregnancy nausea reveal the child’s gender?
It is often said that women who experience nausea or vomiting during their pregnancy will have a girl. However, this is absolutely not true. Every pregnancy is different, and every woman reacts differently to it.
Some women feel very comfortable and well from conception until the day of birth and are having a girl. Others only have to deal with nausea at the beginning of their pregnancy, and others again vomit regularly until the 6th month of pregnancy and still have a boy.
The 11 best tips and pregnancy hacks for nausea
1. Start the day slowly and eat something in bed before getting up
Those who jump out of bed immediately and start the day under stress are more likely to experience morning sickness. Therefore, it is better to set the alarm clock ten minutes earlier than usual, wake up slowly, maybe even take a little morning meditation, and get up easily.
If the nausea is particularly strong in the morning for you, it could help to eat something before you even get up. Try to snack rusks, dry cookies, salty crackers, or crispbread. The small meal raises your blood sugar level, which can help decrease morning sickness.
2. Keep snacking during the day
The trick of eating when you least feel like it can also help you during the day when feeling nauseous. Try not to fill yourself up too much, but rather eat small, light snacks throughout the day. That will keep your blood sugar level reasonably constant. Always have something to nibble with you on the go: e.g., unsalted nuts, cashew nuts, almonds, or dried fruit are very suitable.
3. Drink water and certain tea
When pregnant, women should generally drink a lot of liquids, at least two to three liters a day. Still and lukewarm water can help well when feeling sick, and herbal teas are particularly effective against nausea. Try out peppermint, chamomile, fennel, or anise tea. Those have proven their worth to many desperate pregnant women. You can also try to add some lemon to the tea; that can help too. Drinking liquids helps you, especially when you feel like you absolutely can’t eat anything yet. You can try to take a tea and most likely feel good enough afterward to eat a light snack.
4. Eat porridge or milk rice
Oatmeal with warm milk is stomach-friendly and very easily digestible. Try to add some fruit such as bananas or grated apple, use sugar sparingly and add a pinch of cinnamon. For many, that simple meal works amazingly against nausea in pregnancy.
Whether in the form of cookies, drinking tea, or sweets, ginger is a proven home remedy for nausea during pregnancy. There are even ginger drops or tablets that you can get in the pharmacy. (However, ginger should only be used in the first two trimesters. At the end of pregnancy, caution is advised, as ginger can induce labor pains.)
6. Bitter substances
Bitter substances such as those found in grapefruit can also work against nausea. So if you want, try to eat some bitter fruit, suck on a lemon wedge or eat some artichokes with a meal. They all contain bitter substances (and are rich in vitamins, too btw).
According to healthline.com, Lavender oil can help well against nausea; it is also soothing and has a calming effect. You can try it out, e.g., in the form of oil (for a sniff) or as a lavender bath. The floral, intense fragrance relaxes body and soul and might help you get rid of some discomfort.
8. Provide times of rest
In my opinion, one of the essential tips and pregnancy hacks for nausea is REST! Stress during pregnancy doesn’t make anything better, especially not the nauseous feeling! Try to take enough breaks during your days and even lie down when your body signals the need for rest. Sometimes a quick nap can change a lot in how you feel. Or, for some women, it already helps to lay down to weaken the nauseous feeling. If you are already a mommy, it might not be as easy to rest when needed. Check out this post about how to still take daily little 10-minute mom breaks.
9. Go out and get some fresh air
A long (or even short 😊) walk in the fresh air can also help against nausea and headaches and is good for your soul. So, try it out and get some fresh air today. If necessary, with an umbrella and some boots… most likely you will feel better afterward. Your blood circulation will be stimulated, and you will feel active.
10. Avoid strong smells
As mentioned earlier, scientists suspect the body of pregnant women to be highly alerted, and nausea being a warning signal of spoiled or harmful food. So, if you already know that you are particularly sensitive to smells, avoid places where you know you would experience those (e.g., fast food restaurants or kitchens where meat or fish is fried).
For some women, it can also help to distract themselves. Try to watch a movie, call your best friend and mentally get ready for your baby 😊. Maybe you already feel like looking into some newborn baby essentials and even do some shopping for the nursery.
Get your free printable first trimester checklist here:
That was it, 11 pregnancy hacks for nausea
I hope within those tips you have found some things for you to try out to make your pregnancy a bit easier and more enjoyable. Just take what sounds appealing to you and find your own best way to cope with pregnancy nausea. Remember that every woman is different and what might work well with others might not work for you and the other way around.
Try to stay positive through it all and always keep your baby on your mind. In the end, it will be so worth all the small and big pains and sufferings you go through now. You will be rewarded with the sweetest little bundle of joy for the latest in about 9 months 😉. Hold on, momma! You will get through it!
Leave a comment and let me know which tips you are planning to try out. For me personally, the peppermint tea in the mornings worked wonders.
Find more helpful information and tips for pregnancy essentials here.