Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tips for Coping with Morning Sickness

I've been wanting to write this post for awhile, and now that I shared with you our big news, I can write all about pregnancy without you all wondering why!

My pregnancy with Ellie was kind of a rough one. I was pretty sick for several months, and there were many days where I could not even read or watch television; all I could do was lie on the couch feeling absolutely terrible. That's how awful I felt. I can really empathize with those who have a lot of morning, or more like all-day sickness. It can be debilitating, and sometimes there is nothing that really works to help alleviate its intensity. That's how my pregnancy was with Ellie. None of the tricks and tips or medication seemed to help at all. The smell of water made me head for the bathroom. To be honest, it was so awful that I recall telling my husband that this might be our only child! Selfish, yes, and I was not entirely serious, but that just gives you an idea of how bad I was feeling in the moment.

This pregnancy has been much different, however. I've had typical morning sickness, but it has not been nearly as intense as it was with Ellie. I have no idea why this is...maybe it's a boy this time? Maybe it's because this is my second pregnancy? Who knows. In fact, I haven't even thrown up yet. Not even once. I started getting close with gagging and all (sorry if t.m.i.), but then I decided to take a low dose of prescription medication for morning sickness, which seemed to start working overnight. I could hardly believe the difference. Anyway, onto my tips. I realize many of these tips are common knowledge, but these are things that specifically have worked for me this pregnancy (Like I said before, nothing worked last time!)
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1) Lemons. Especially at the beginning of my nausea, lemons really helped take the "bite" out of the nausea. I drink a lot of icy-cold lemon water, and as soon as the nausea hits, I drink a glass or if things are really serious, I just suck on the lemon wedge. I like my water pretty lemony, and fresh lemons are something I always have on hand. The scent really seemed to help, too.

2) Give In to the Cravings & Avoid Foods that Turn You Off. This is pretty straight forward. I have had quite a few cravings this pregnancy, and I definitely have indulged myself. Doritos, pickled onions, McDonald's fries, and hazelnut chocolate are just a few things I've craved so far. I find that one day I might crave something and the next day I don't even want to look at it. Don't force yourself to eat something that is unappealing at the time. It just isn't worth it.

3) Eat Lots of Protein. I don't know why this seems to help, but it does. I read this tip somewhere else, and I think it actually helps. Almonds are a great source of protein and a quick, healthy snack. I have been eating lots of raw almonds, and when hunger or nausea strike, I grab a handful.
4) Have Snacks on Hand. Some people can't eat when they're nauseous, and others need to eat all the time. I'm one of those who has to eat all the time if I feel sick. I'm sure it's one of the reasons I tend to gain a lot of weight in the first trimester. Keep snacks in your purse such as a granola bar, peppermints, crackers, almonds, or whatever suits your taste. This way if you're driving or in church or at someone's house and the hunger nausea sets in, you can stave it off a bit. If you tend to feel sick first thing in the morning, keep a snack beside your bed to nibble on before you get up for breakfast.

5) Get Plenty of Rest. This should go without saying, but you need to get enough sleep when you're pregnant. I have really found that if I don't get enough sleep, I feel that much more nauseated the next day. It makes a big difference for me.

6) Don't Feel Guilty if You Need Meds. I'm sure every pregnant woman I know does not want to take meds when pregnant. I think it is very wise to avoid medication as much as possible when pregnant. However, if you feel you simply cannot cope without some meds for morning sickness, try to not feel guilty. I know that with this pregnancy, I am SO glad I decided to start a low-dose prescription for the nausea. Last pregnancy it didn't seem to help at all, but for some reason, it has helped immensely this pregnancy, even with a very low dose.
Bible Study
7) Give Thanks. This can be a tough one, especially when you're in the throws of it. Try to remember that this will not last forever, and at the end of it you will have a beautiful baby. Some women give thanks for their morning sickness because it can be a sign of a healthy pregnancy. There has never been a better reason for being sick!

*Linking up to Raising Homemakers*

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