Sometimes morning sickness can seem like a misnomer when you’re pregnant and feeling sick all day long.
Morning sickness, or nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, is most common in the first trimester between weeks six and 13, and about 70% of pregnant women will experience it.
Although morning sickness is a rough experience, time will help, and it doesn’t last forever. It may be the first of many bumps in the road you’ll experience on your parenting journey. We’ve compiled some tips to help you feel better and reduce morning sickness symptoms during pregnancy.
It seems counterintuitive, but regularly eating small amounts of plain food can help soothe nausea. Snack often throughout the day so you don’t get too full—an empty stomach can also make nausea worse. Try a couple plain crackers before getting out of bed each day until your symptoms subside.
Your food choices matter, too. High protein, low-fat, easy-to-digest foods may help you feel better. Avoid greasy, spicy and fatty foods. Foods with ginger, such as ginger lollipops, are sometimes helpful.
Take your prenatal vitamin each day with a snack, and if it contains iron, try taking it before bed.
Keep yourself hydrated and drink plenty of fluids, especially water. Ginger ale can also soothe. Aim for six to eight cups of caffeine-free beverages each day. You may need more fluids after vomiting. Drinking slowly with small sips may help keep them down.
Breathe and Rest
Fresh air can make you feel better, so open the windows if you can and keep the air flowing with fans. Try to take a daily walk outside.
Get plenty of rest. Your body is doing tremendous work to build a person, so be gentle on yourself. Give yourself extra time to get out of bed in the morning so you don’t have to rush on an empty stomach.
Certain odors or foods can make you feel worse. As you identify them, take care to avoid them when you can.
Protect Your Teeth
Stomach acid can damage your teeth, so rinse your mouth after vomiting. Mix a teaspoon of baking soda in a cup of water and use that to rinse, which can help neutralize acid.
When to Seek More Help
If you’re vomiting more than three times per day and not able to keep anything down, you should reach out to your doctor before your next regular prenatal appointment. There are antinausea medications and other treatments that can be prescribed if morning sickness becomes extreme, also known as hyperemesis gravidarum.
A conversation with your provider can help you determine the best treatment for you even if your morning sickness is mild. Keep track of your symptoms to share at your appointment. If you need a provider, you can find one here.