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Morning Sickness

What causes morning sickness

The stem of the brain acts as the command center for nausea and vomiting. This area gets stimulated by the high levels of beta hCG (a pregnancy hormone), present in the blood in the first trimester. The uterine muscles are also in the process of stretching to capacity, whereas the muscle tissue of the digestive tract starts to relax. This creates acid in the stomach, enhances your sense of smell and makes digestion sluggish. A woman whose command center is extremely sensitive is likely to suffer severe symptoms. Besides this, stress and fatigue also play their part in contributing to morning sickness.

Do all women experience morning sickness

Only 50% of all women experience nausea, queasiness and vomiting. These symptoms are a reassuring sign that your hormones are doing their job. But if there is a total lack of symptoms, or you lose those that you've had, do consult your doctor.

Will morning sickness affect me only in the mornings

Not at all. Some women experience discomfort only when they wake up in the mornings, others experience anytime in the day or all day long. There is no fixed rule. Though it is termed morning sickness, it can strike on a regular basis at noon or even at night.

I keep throwing up, how will my baby get nourished

Morning sickness, fortunately, doesn't interfere with the nutrition that your baby receives. The baby lives off your energy and it is normally the mother who suffers. Therefore, it is important for you to eat the right foods and get plenty of rest.

How can my symptoms be alleviated

  • Carbohydrates and protein combat nausea so make sure you eat well.
  • Fluids are lost due to vomiting, so you must increase your fluid intake. Drink fruit and vegetables juices, soups and broth. You could also try solids with a high water content e.g. melons, citrus fruits, lettuce.
  • If you cannot manage to eat or drink, you could ask your doctor for an antenatal vitamin supplement.
  • Let your eyes, nose and tongue guide you in selecting correct food. Avoid the sight and smell of foods that make you queasy.
  • Avoid smoke and smokers.
  • Eat smaller amounts at regular intervals. Low blood sugar is caused by long gaps between meals. It can also trigger nausea. Consequently, eat before nausea strikes i.e. eat before going to bed and before stepping out of it in the morning. Always have a high carbohydrate snack close on hand.
  • Get enough sleep and relaxation.
  • Brush your teeth and rinse your mouth after each bout of vomiting. It will reduce nausea and decrease the risk of damage to your teeth.
  • Sea bands put pressure on the inner wrist and reduce nausea.

Why am I salivating so much

Ptyalism or excessive saliva is a common symptom of pregnancy. It is more common in women suffering from morning sickness and disappears after a few months. Though unpleasant, it is completely harmless.

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