Morning sickness makes it harder for newly pregnant mamas to enjoy their new status. Despite its name, “morning sickness,” can be “anytime of the day” sickness depending on your body’s reactions to all of the new changes.
Keep Morning Sickness at Bay With Natural Remedies
Fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent and minimize the onset and severity of pregnancy-related nausea or vomiting.
Here are five ways to keep morning sickness at bay, or minimize its overall effect on your physical and emotional wellbeing. The good news is that it eventually fades on its own – typically around the 12th to 14th week as you move further into the second trimester.
Please Note: Even though morning sickness is considered “normal,” it’s important to track your symptoms and share them with your OB during prenatal appointments. In rare situations, morning sickness is more severe, lasting longer than normal, and may require medical attention (hyperemesis gravidarum).
Bookmark our post, Pregnancy Pains: What’s Normal and What’s Not, for a quick go-to of which physical discomforts, pain, or symptoms are worth a call-in or visit to your obstetrician.
1. Eat small (healthy) snacks more often so your tummy is never empty
There is a direct correlation between an empty tummy and morning sickness. Keeping a little something in your stomach at all times can make the difference between feeling fine/slightly queasy and being so nauseous you can’t function. Making this change from three-full-meals-a-day to five or six smaller, healthy meals and snacks can also prevent or minimize heartburn, another common pregnancy complaint that begins once the baby is bigger and begins pressing on the stomach.
Read, Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy’s Tip #3, which is dedicated to the tenets of a healthy pregnancy diet for more information on what to eat and not eat.
In addition to healthy small “micro-meals,” keep something on your nightstand such as oyster crackers, cheddar cheese crackers, or saltines with a bottle of water. Eat some crackers and take a few sips of water when you wake up to go to the bathroom at night and before you get out of bed in the morning.
2. Make sure to get daily exercise
Contrary to how you may feel while sitting or lying down (queasy and not wanting to do anything…), exercise is proven relief for many of the physical discomforts associated with pregnancy, including morning sickness. It also improves self-esteem, minimizes depression and anxiety, and reduces the risk of both gestational diabetes and preeclampsia.
Speak to your doctor about the safest pregnancy exercises for you with respect to your previous exercise record and medical history.
3. Ginger, ginger, ginger – and a little bit of sour
Ginger has been used to treat nausea, stomach ailments, and digestive issues for tens thousands of years. It is a regular ingredient in many Asian dishes for reasons beyond it’s refreshing, aromatic, and slightly spicy flavor.
You can make your own ginger tea, a soothing tummy balm, by simmering freshly washed, thin slices of fresh ginger (a tablespoon or so per cup of water) for five to 10 minutes. Add a dollop of honey and some lemon juice if you like. It can be sipped hot or iced. You can also purchase ginger tea bags in the tea section of any grocery store.
There ways to consume tummy taming ginger include:
- Ginger pops
- Pickled ginger (at most grocery stores and all Asian markets)
- Ginger chews or lozenges (naturally sweetened ginger candy)
- Eating foods that use fresh ginger such as some of Healthline’s 14 Recipes to Ease Morning Sickness
Many women find that sour things are the ticket for turning nausea around. Lemon-flavored hard candies, adding lemon or lime to water, keeping dill pickles on hand…all can be helpful.
4. Flavored ice chips, ice cubes, or water
If you are vomiting, it’s good to re-hydrate but sipping plain water isn’t always the best for an irritated tummy. Consider infusing water with watermelon, lemon or lime, and or fresh mint leaves. Then freeze it into cubes that you can leave whole or crush into chips. Sucking on these when you’re nauseous can simultaneously quell the nausea while rehydrating you at a healthy pace and without overfilling the tummy.
Women who suffer from morning sickness may have aversions to certain smells, so avoiding those is always recommended. On the flip side, certain scents can help you power through waves of nausea. Every woman’s scent preferences are different, but some of the most common scents known to relieve morning sickness are:
- Lemon, orange, and other citrus-related scents
We recommend visiting your local health food store or a grocery store with well-stocked aromatherapy oils. Smell samples and see which ones you like. Some essential oil companies sell morning sickness-specific kits or bundles. Add a few drops to a cotton ball to carry around with you so you can smell it as needed. You can also use a diffuser to keep the scent a part of your morning or workday routine.
The labor and delivery team at OB/GYN Associates of Spokane knows how daunting morning sickness can be. Contact us to schedule an appointment and to learn more ways to treat morning sickness naturally.