FAQs About Morning Sickness

Published on 04/30/21

When it comes to pregnancy, women experience a variety of symptoms. Some women deal with the same and some with similar symptoms but deal with an entirely different experience. This can leave room for a lot of wives tales, misinformation, and myths that have circulated over the years. 

Because so many pregnant women experience symptoms like morning sickness, the truth of this symptom may become a little skewed when traveling through the grapevine. 

Here are a few frequently asked questions regarding morning sickness that may shed some light during pregnancy:

The symptom of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy is a very common condition that most women will experience during their pregnancy. Even though the symptom is labeled “Morning” sickness, this can happen at any time during the day, not just the morning. 

Although this isn’t a worrisome symptom of pregnancy and doesn’t affect the fetus – it can affect your life. This means interrupting your everyday routine – basically any activity that isn’t inside your house! For this, there are safe treatment options that can help manage your morning sickness and help avoid it from getting worse.

When Does A Woman Start To See Morning Sickness Occur?

Morning sickness usually starts before 9 weeks of pregnancy for the majority of women. You should start to see it subside by 14 weeks of pregnancy. For some though, it can last several weeks or months. For very few women, it can last throughout the entire pregnancy.

Why Is It Called Morning Sickness If It Doesn’t Happen Only In The Morning?

The word “morning” is actually inaccurate. Common nausea and vomiting in pregnancy can happen anytime. Many women find that their body develops a personal pattern of nausea. With the morning being a very common time to experience an uneasy feeling. 

Morning Sickness Means You’re Having A Girl?

One of the many wives tales you’ll hear during pregnancy. Predicting the sex of your baby based on symptoms and behaviors of your pregnancy is really big. The size of your belly, how it sits, the puffiness of your face, morning sickness, etc. 

Is there predictability with symptoms and pregnancies?

There has been one study that showed women who had morning sickness bad enough to be hospitalized were slightly more likely to have girls rather than boys. 

This kind of severe morning sickness is called hyperemesis gravidarum. 

However, there is no research to solidify this wives tale as fact.

What If You Don’t Have Morning Sickness? Is the Pregnancy At Risk?

Morning sickness is very common but not the key to a healthy pregnancy. There are many women who go one to have a healthy pregnancy and are lucky enough to never have to deal with morning sickness. Not even once. All morning sickness is – is an indication of a rise in pregnancy hormones, gastrointestinal sensitivities and possibly stress. 

What If Morning Sickness Disappears Suddenly?

Most of the time, morning sickness will disappear on it’s own at the end of the first trimester. Some may have lingering morning sickness, some may have it ease up a little, or some find their morning sickness completely disappears. 

If you feel your morning sickness has disappeared suddenly during early pregnancy symptoms and you are worried, call your doctor. This could be a sign of a more serious problem, or it could be nothing at all. Talk to your doctor about your worries and they will guide you through managing them.

When Is Morning Sickness A Concern?

If your morning sickness is so severe that you cannot keep food or fluids down and begin to lose weight – this can affect the fetus’ weight at birth.

Can Weight Loss Be An Issue?

If you lose too much weight during pregnancy, this can cause issues with your liver, fluid balance, and thyroid. Severe morning sickness can be difficult to treat and causes health problems. Early treatment is the best way to combat morning sickness becoming hyperemesis gravidarum. 

How Can You Manage Nausea and Vomiting During Pregnancy?

Making active changes to your lifestyle and more specifically diet can help make you feel better. These change can include:

  • Taking vitamins
  • Adjusting meal times
  • Changing the types of foods you eat

Is There A Point That It’s Recommended You See A Doctor?

Nausea and vomiting can be very worrisome since it’s normally a sign of bad things to come. Most of the time, morning sickness doesn’t need medical assistance. Most of the time, women just need more comfort. However, you should call your healthcare provider if:

  • You are losing weight.
  • You are dehydrated.
  • You can’t function at work.
  • You can’t function at home.
  • You are concerned.

How Do I Manage Morning Sickness In Everyday Routines?

There’s obviously nothing worse than feeling sick when you’re away from home or in a different place. This could be when you’re at work, or driving – any situation where you’re out of your comfort zone and away from a bathroom. Coming up with a plan to deal with morning sickness throughout your day can make dealing with morning sickness easier. 

There are specialty products that can help you just in case you’re away from home such as lined bags to carry near you while you’re driving.

Is Nausea And Vomiting A Sign Of Something Else During Pregnancy?

Yes, some medical conditions can cause nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. These conditions include:

  • Ulcer
  • Food-related illness
  • Thyroid or gallbladder disease

Your healthcare provider may consider these other issues if you have additional symptoms or signs that are not normally occurring with nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. Some of these signs and symptoms include:

  • Nausea and vomiting that occurs for the first time after 9 weeks of pregnancy
  • Abdominal pain or tenderness
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Enlarged thyroid gland (swelling in the front of the neck)

Can You Take Medications?

It’s optimal to try and handle morning sickness with non-medicinal ways first. This can be anything from lifestyle changes, dietary changes, acupressure, acupuncture, etc. However, not all women will get relief from non-medicinal substances. This is when medication could be a possibility for treatment. 

Guidance from your doctor with specific medications or supplements can be helpful for some women. None are approved to treat only morning sickness but can help alleviate worse symptoms:

  • Vitamin B6
  • Reflux medications (Pepcid, Zantac)
  • Emetrol
  • Unisom Nighttime Sleep Aid (not the SleepGels) combined with vitamin B6
  • Some herbal substances with the help of your practitioner

There are also prescription drugs that can be useful in helping control nausea and vomiting. These can include:

  • Zofran (expensive, not always covered by insurance)
  • Phenergan (pill and suppository form)
  • Compazine

There are also IV medications and other medications used to treat hyperemesis gravidarum.

Medications are not used for the entire pregnancy unless symptoms persist that long. 

What Kind Of Care Would Be In Hospital Treatment?

  • Lab tests may be done to check how your liver is working.
  • If you are dehydrated, you may receive fluids and vitamins through an intravenous (IV) line.
  • If your vomiting cannot be controlled, you might need additional medication.
  • If you continue to lose weight, a feeding tube may be recommended to ensure that you and your fetus are getting enough nutrients.

What Can Help With Nausea At Home?

  • Eat dry toast or crackers in the morning before you get out of bed to avoid moving around on an empty stomach.
  • Eat five or six “mini meals” a day to ensure that your stomach is never empty.
  • Eat frequent bites of foods like nuts, fruits, or crackers.

Try bland foods. The BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, toast, and tea) is low in fat and easy to digest. It’s helpful to find foods you like and that appeal to you. Also to find foods that you are able to eat and keep down.

Remedies!

There are a few strategies that offer relief and get rid of the queasiness that comes with morning sickness relief. Give it some time and try to:

Remove Offensive Odors

Because you’re more sensitive to smells during pregnancy, some scents may be sickening all of a sudden. Try to remove yourself from smells that may trigger nausea. No matter what it is!

In addition to avoiding smells, try to limit them by microwaving your food which causes fewer odors than the oven – for instance. When you do cook, cook with the windows open. Leave any place that has a strong odor and is making you ill. As well as steer clear of foods that you can’t stand to look at. A common one is raw chicken.

And last, make sure to wash your clothes more often with unscented, or lightly scented detergent. 

Pressure Point Wristlets

These wristlets are 1-inch wide bands that put pressure on an acupressure point in the inner wrist. These have been known to safely lessen pregnancy nausea. Another option is PsiBands that uses two acupressure points with adjustable knobs that are placed inside your wrists. 

There is also a band called the Reliefband that is battery-operated and utilizes gentle electrical stimulation. 

Reduce Stress

Resting and de-stressing is important in every aspect of pregnancy but is also known to help manage symptoms like morning sickness. Try techniques like prenatal yoga or meditation. Also make sure to get enough rest every night. 

Minimize The Symptoms With Alternative Remedies

Take it easy. Rushing in the morning can cause morning sickness to flood up quickly. Try to eliminate moving too fast – literally and metaphorically. It’s understandable that with responsibilities like kids can mean you don’t have time to breathe but try setting time aside for yourself. For instance, get up a little earlier than them to have some slow moving quiet time before the hustle of the day begins. 

It’s also worth a try to ease morning sickness with acupressure or acupuncture, hypnosis or biofeedback. 

Brush Your Teeth

When vomiting so frequently, regular brushing helps keep your mouth fresh and reduces sickness in the future. It also helps fight against the damage vomiting can have on the teeth. 

After every meal or bouts of vomiting it’s good practice to wash your mouth out. If you have a toothpaste that can be a trigger for nausea, talk to your doctor about alternate  recommendations. Or use plain water.

Supplements

To compensate for nutrients you may be lacking, take prenatal vitamins to supplement. Prenatal vitamins have been known to decrease certain symptoms, specifically nausea. It’s recommended to take prenatal vitamins right before bed to help decrease nausea. Especially prenatal that are a slow-release and higher in the vitamin B6.

If the vitamin itself makes you nauseous consider taking it with a meal or as a chewable or powder supplement. If your symptoms tend to be harsh, talk to your doctor about taking a prenatal with more B6 and less iron. Only take supplementation that your healthcare provider prescribes you.

Talk To Your Doctor About Additional Possibilities

If you’re worried that your morning sickness is more severe, it’s a good idea to your doctor about the possibility of a prescription approved by the FDA to help treat nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

If you find that none of these tips or preventative measures work, it’s very important to talk to your doctor. Also, be sure to talk to your doctor before starting any medications or alternative remedies. Discuss your options with your doctor to ensure you’re providing the safest remedy for you and your baby.

For Any Questions About Pregnancy And Morning Sickness, Talk To The Doctors At Rosh MFM

The team at Rosh Maternal & Fetal Medicine are prepared to give you answers and provide top-notch medical care so that you have a healthy pregnancy. If you’d like to schedule prenatal care or have questions about pregnancy and morning sickness, call their office in the Midtown East area of New York City, or schedule an appointment online.