While some women sail through pregnancy with ease, for many it can be really difficult due to nausea and vomiting. Vomiting, also known as morning sickness, is a normal part of pregnancy, especially during the first three months (first trimester). In fact, more than 65 percent of women have this problem during pregnancy.
The exact cause of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy is still not known. However, it is believed that rapid hormonal changes in the body may cause changes in the stomach’s muscle contraction and relaxation patterns, leading to nausea and vomiting.
Other contributing factors include certain odors, certain foods, fatigue, stress, anxiety, sensitive stomach, and vitamin or mineral deficiencies.
Nausea and vomiting may occur early in the morning and reduce as the day progresses. Some women have symptoms at other times during the day. For most, the problem resolves after the first trimester, but some may have it longer.
The symptoms can be very unpleasant and can interfere with your daily routine. But you can easily deal with them with simple home remedies and a few lifestyle changes.
Here are the top 10 ways to deal with vomiting during pregnancy.
1. Sip Water
Water is the best medicine when it comes to nausea and vomiting, especially during pregnancy. Women who drink a glass of water every hour have been found to have a lower chance of having morning sickness. Also, it helps keep your body hydrated, which is essential for any pregnant woman and her unborn baby.
- Keep a glass of water beside your bed. Soon after waking up, take small sips. Allow some time for your stomach to settle down and then try to leave your bed.
- Also, drink enough water throughout the day. This will help lift your mood, improve digestion and keep you healthy from within.
Ginger is one of the best natural ways to deal with vomiting, even during pregnancy. It is good for your digestive system and helps block acidic secretion in the stomach that causes nausea or vomiting. Also, the smell and flavor of ginger can help you get over the vomiting sensation.
- Suck a small piece of ginger or chew a ginger candy to get quick relief from nausea.
- You can also prepare a mixture with 5 drops of ginger juice and 1 teaspoon of honey. Consume it slowly when you wake up in the morning.
- Also, make ginger tea by boiling 1 teaspoon of grated ginger in 1 cup of water for 10 minutes. Strain, add a little honey and sip it slowly. Drink 1 to 2 cups of ginger tea during the morning.
Lemon can also help deal with vomiting during pregnancy. Its soothing smell has a natural calming effect on the body that can reduce nausea and prevent vomiting. Plus, the vitamin C in lemon is good for a pregnant woman as well as the unborn baby.
- Squeeze a fresh lemon into a glass of water and add a little honey. Drink it every morning to start the day and prevent morning sickness.
- You can even simply smell fresh lemon peels to ease nausea and vomiting symptoms during pregnancy.
- You can also put some lemon essential oil into a handkerchief and sniff it whenever you feel a bout of nausea coming on. Having a lemon candy can also help.
Peppermint is one herb that can reduce nausea, morning sickness or vomiting during pregnancy. It helps calm the stomach and in turn reduces nausea.
- Add 1 teaspoon of dried peppermint to a cup of hot water. Cover and steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Strain and add some sugar or honey. Drink this tea after waking up in the morning.
- Another option is to put a few drops of peppermint essential oil on a handkerchief and inhale the smell whenever you have a bout of nausea.
Note: In some women, the peppermint fragrance may trigger nausea. In such situations, avoid it.
Fennel is another great remedy for vomiting and nausea during pregnancy. It aids digestion and relaxes the lining of the digestive tract, thus reducing the vomiting sensation. Plus, its aromatic flavor helps calm the stomach.
- Keep some fennel seeds near your bedside and chew on them as soon as you feel queasy.
- You can also add 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds to a cup of hot water. Cover and let it steep for about 10 minutes. Strain and add a little lemon juice and honey. Sip it slowly after waking up in the morning.
6. Increase Vitamin B6 Intake
Although the exact reason is still not known, vitamin B6 has been found to help ease morning sickness in many pregnant women. Also, this vitamin causes no harm to the fetus and is considered safe during pregnancy.
- You can take vitamin B6 supplements for morning sickness. The typical dose is 25 mg, 3 times a day. However, consult your gynecologist before taking this remedy.
- A healthy, balanced diet high in vitamin B6 will also greatly help prevent vomiting during pregnancy. Eat foods high in vitamin B6 like brown rice, avocados, bananas, fish, corn and nuts.
7. Snack on Crackers
Snacking on crackers in the morning just after waking up is a great way to stop nausea and prevent vomiting during pregnancy. Crackers are rich in carbohydrates and bland in flavor, and thus help settle the stomach by soaking up acids accumulated during the night.
Keep a box of crackers by your bed and eat a few before getting up in the morning. Allow some time for digestion and then leave your bed slowly. Make sure to eat the crackers before you get hungry and before nausea occurs.
8. Red Raspberry Leaf
According to many herbalists, the leaves of red raspberries can prevent nausea and vomiting during pregnancy by relaxing the smooth muscles of the uterus. Plus, these leaves are rich in B vitamins as well as calcium, iron and magnesium that are essential for a healthy pregnancy.
- Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried red raspberry leaves to 1 cup of hot water.
- Cover and steep for 5 to 10 minutes, then strain.
- Drink this tea first thing in the morning.
Note: As red raspberry leaves may cause uterine contractions, consult your doctor before using this remedy.
An acupressure wristband that is easily found in the market can also help reduce nausea and prevent vomiting. These bands are made on the same principles of the ancient healing art of acupressure and are worn on the wrist. By applying pressure on specific points on the wrist, nausea and vomiting can be controlled.
- Wear acupressure wristbands on each of your wrists, between the wrist and elbow on the underside of the arm.
- When you experience a wave of nausea, press the button on one wristband 20 times at 1-second intervals.
- Repeat the same on the other wristband.
- Do this for a few minutes and the feeling of nausea will subside.
10. Take Regular Walks
Walking and light exercises are very helpful during pregnancy, until your doctor says no to it. Walking helps dilute the progesterone hormone throughout your system, which is one of the reasons behind morning sickness.
Also, walking helps digestion, thus reducing the chances of vomiting. Plus, when you take a walk in the open area, the fresh air will help you feel better.
After eating your dinner, go for a walk for 15 to 20 minutes daily in the open area. If you cannot go outside, walk around your house.
- Avoid eating large meals. Instead eat several small meals throughout the day.
- Avoid having an empty stomach. Snack regularly between meals.
- Stay away from fried, fatty foods, which can be difficult to digest and cause vomiting.
- Eat foods that are high in carbohydrates or protein, low in fat and easy to digest.
- Pay close attention to nausea triggers and try to avoid them.
- If the smell of hot food makes you queasy, eat cold food.
- Get more sleep by going to bed earlier or sleeping later in the morning. Also, allow more time to get out of bed in the morning.
- You can also try yoga, breathing exercises and meditation to keep your mind distracted. This can help to reduce nausea.
- Have some cool, fruit-flavored popsicles in the morning to keep morning sickness at bay.
- Avoid lying down for at least 30 minutes after eating your dinner.
Seek medical help if vomiting is severe and it becomes difficult for you to keep down fluids or bland foods.