Tips Morning Sickness Relief, When Morning Sickness Symptoms Start and How Long Morning Sickness Lasts
Pregnancy is an amazing experience but at times it can feel like an uphill battle. My first trimester, (15 weeks actually) I felt worse than I had ever felt in my entire life. I experienced debilitating nausea to a level that left me barely able to go to work. Looking back I really don’t know how I did anything. Even though there is medicine that can help morning sickness and nausea, I wanted my pregnancy to be as natural (and drug-free) as possible. So, I resisted prescription medicine even though I probably could have benefitted from it.
The first question you may be wondering if you’re pregnant is how long does morning sickness last? In general, they tell women that morning sickness symptoms start around 6-7 weeks and that morning sickness ends around the start of the second trimester, which depending on who you talk to can be around 12-14 weeks.
My morning sickness didn’t set in until about 9 weeks and funny enough for the two weeks before that I kept saying “I wish I felt nauseous so I felt like the pregnancy was real.” And then it came and I kicked myself everyday for asking for it.
Doctors say having morning sickness is a good sign that your body is responding to the pregnancy so there’s that to be thankful for. My morning sickness lasted until about 15 weeks but drastically improved around 14 weeks. I still have days that I feel a little queasy, certain foods still gross me out, but it’s bearable.
For a little morning sickness relief, my doctor had a few recommendations. As a first defense against morning sickness, he recommended taking a Vitamin B6 supplement (25mg) three times a day. If that didn’t improve things he told me to take Unisom, yes the sleep aid (25mg) to help get rid of morning sickness. As I said, I’m a stubborn girl and I only took the vitamin B6, which did seem to help a little.
However, despite the small improvements, I was still insanely nauseous. So here are my tips to cope with nausea and beat morning sickness. Just to be clear though, I am not a doctor, this is what personally helped me, everyone is different and nothing really makes it go entirely away. These tricks just help you cope for a little while until you can come out on the other side.
Start the Day off Right & Stay Hydrated
I started my morning off every day with lemon water, I read that lemon really helps with nausea and I felt that it was a refreshing and healthy way to start the day. I was also told to stay hydrated and found that when I wasn’t that my morning sickness intensified. So with that in mind, don’t have too much lemon, which is a diuretic, but a little extra vitamin C boost is good!
Eat Regularly to Beat Morning Sickness
My next best advice is to eat VERY regularly—I was told to graze like a cow and to break down my meals into six a day. I just didn’t find this feasible. I didn’t have the time or patience to deal with planning this. Instead, I ate a little less during each of my meals and snacked on something every hour or so. My morning sickness seemed to get worse as my blood sugar dropped so constantly eating something does wonders. You also want to avoid eating too large of a meal all at once since overtaxing your digestive system will lead to really uncomfortable bloating. Trust me.
Eating constantly, keeping snacks like crackers and bananas on hand all the time really helps. I kept crackers by the bed for emergencies (something I thought was totally a ridiculous suggestion at the beginning but turned out to be a lifesaver) and started my mornings off right away with a banana.
If you live in a city like New York as I do, I recommend carrying around something that smells good so that when you encounter your local garbage spill or homeless individual, you’re ready. This way you can whip something out and sniff it in an emergency. Keep some herbs or a few slices of lemon in a plastic bag. When I was stuck taking the subway, these were life savers!
Track Your Triggers
Figure out what it is that really seems to set you off. Does the sight of chicken get you feeling queasy? Your husband’s smelly gym clothes on the floor? For me there was a Subway commercial that made me lose my mind. The thought of Subway serving rotisserie chicken had me running for the bathroom. Learn your triggers and avoid those things that set your nausea reflex into high gear as best you can. Speak to your partner and family about how they can help. Chicken really did it for me, my poor husband was stuck eating his chicken in the hall for a while because I really couldn’t watch or smell it. We had also just come from Nashville, which I loved, but this is where my nausea started so it made it tough to even remember our trip fondly—in fact, for a while, I swear country music was enough to make me queasy. True story.
Foods that Work to Reduce Morning Sickness
If you’re like me, you may have experienced intense hunger alongside a feeling that nothing in the entire world sounded good. If there is any food that makes you feel better, eat it and eat as much of it as you want. Don’t feel guilty.
For me, the foods that helped me changed on a weekly basis. Generally, mild, carbohydrates like crackers, cereal and pretzels seem to help people. I also found that bananas and frozen fruit/popsicles sounded delicious. Frozen grapes and chocolate covered bananas were my best friends. I also found watermelon popsicles (very low in sugar) that were amazing. Crystallized ginger candies helped a lot, as did ginger tea. I will say that ginger ale was disgusting to me, who knows why. I stayed away from my favorite flavorful foods like Thai, Indian and Mexican for a while but if they sound good to you, go for it. Again, whatever food sounds comforting to you usually works.
Oh and I also found that Preggie Pop Drops (little hard organic sucking candies) were helpful to keep in my bag.
Listen to Your Bod
If your body is craving something weird, do yourself a favor and listen to it (as long as it’s not on the foods to avoid list). Sometimes bizarre foods and remedies just might be the cure. Shake Shack burgers and chain restaurants did it for me. I live in New York City, and as any self-respecting New Yorker will tell you, it’s considered an abomination to eat at a chain restaurant here. But what can I say, all I craved was Olive Garden salad dressing and Uno’s Deep Dish Pizza. And I went for it. And you know what? It felt good! No shame, Mommies!
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
I was so hard on myself during the weeks that I felt intensely nauseous. I was eating so much and wasn’t able to keep up my regular workout routine. I kept thinking, if I don’t get some morning sickness relief, I’m going to be a whale. There were a couple of weeks where all I could eat were cheeseburgers and cheese fries. I couldn’t help it. And we’re talking like multiple burgers, ladies. And I got so angry at myself. But I’m here to tell you that this feeling stops. You come out of the morning sickness phase (most of us do anyway) and you should just eat what you need to during this time to survive. If there is anything that sounds good to you, you deserve it. I promise.
Exercise to Ease Morning Sickness
It may seem counterintuitive but working out actually seemed to help alleviate my morning sickness. Now, I’m not talking hardcore cardio. There was just no way I could have possibly ran or have done anything major but I took long walks every day (five miles) and getting out and moving my body, staying strong really did wonders for me. Of course, do what feels right for you. But you may be surprised that once you get moving, you feel better.
Just in case, it’s a good idea to have some emergency supplies at all times to ward off morning sickness. Bring snacks with you wherever you go, I always kept a bar in my bag as well as some sort of sugary candy. Also, stash a toothbrush, toothpaste and mouthwash at work or in your bag in case of emergency. If you find yourself in a bad situation where you need to throw up, this fix will make you feel a lot better.
I hope you find these tips helpful! Let me know in the comments if you have any secret weapons that helped you beat morning sickness!
I found this article over at Rock the Bump helpful also about morning sickness helpful too if you want to learn more.