Does Being Sick Harm My Baby?
Women who experience a "normal" degree of morning sickness have no reason to fear harm to their baby. However, women who find that they simply cannot keep anything down and begin to lose weight should call their doctor. Hyperemesis gravidarum, a severe form of morning sickness, only occurs in a small percentage of pregnant women but is a serious health matter. The disorder is characterized by symptoms of severe nausea and vomiting, dehydration, maternal weight loss, and rapid heartbeat. Doctors can treat it with medications and supervise sufferers closely, to ensure the safety of both the mother and the unborn baby. "My doctor, who had been in practice for more than 20 years, had only experienced one other woman with the level of difficulties that I had, so I was an extreme case," says Clouet. "I was put on Phenergan for my extreme nausea which seemed to work, though it might have been that I slept so much that I didn't feel the urge to vomit. I battled this condition my entire pregnancy, finally stopping vomiting two hours after delivery. I made it, and have a healthy son as proof!"
Show Me the Remedies!
Although there's no magic bullet that "cures" morning sickness, there are some pretty good remedies that are worth mentioning. Some are old and some are new, but they're all worth trying for the sake of some relief. Give these a shot and see if any of them work for you!
- Crackers, Crackers, Crackers! Place some by your bedside to munch in the middle of the night and first thing in the morning before rising. Do this before getting out of bed.
- Try to eat small frequent meals throughout the day so that your stomach is never empty and to neutralize stomach acid.
- Avoid fatty foods that take a long time to digest. Also steer away from rich, spicy, fried, and acidic foods that irritate the digestive system.
- Try to avoid foods or smells that trigger your nausea.
- Try eating more carbohydrates like plain baked potatoes, white rice, and toast.
- Sometimes the iron in prenatal vitamins can bother some women. Talk to your doctor for advice or to make changes. It's best to take vitamins with food.
- Try gelatin desserts, frozen popsicles, ginger ale, decaffeinated sodas, and pretzels. Not the healthiest of foods—but they may get you over the hump.
- Sip on water and fluids throughout the day to prevent dehydration.
- Give yourself time for naps and to relax.
- Lemons—sucking on them or in lemon ice.
- Ginger—either capsules, tea, sticks, or crystallized.
Over-the-Counter Nausea Aids
- Ask your doctor about taking vitamin B6. It helps to ease nausea in some women.
- Emetrol is a phosphated carbohydrate solution. It's a sweet syrup, which reduces smooth muscle contractions.
- Acupressure wristbands can be helpful. Some of the more common brands, like Seabands, are intended to prevent seasickness.