The Top 5 Safe & Natural Morning Sickness Remedies
Quite possibly the worst symptom of pregnancy, morning sickness affects 70% of women during their first trimester, and some moms-to-be continue on to experience nausea into their second and third trimesters. Morning sickness can start as early as six weeks into pregnancy and tends to peak around the eighth and ninth weeks, eventually subsiding around 12-14 weeks. While it can be difficult to cope with morning sickness, we’ve put together our top 5 safe and natural remedies to combat that icky feeling.
Vitamin B6 helps our bodies to process certain amino acids (proteins), which may somehow reduce nausea. Some studies also show that women who have severe morning sickness have lower levels of vitamin B6 in their blood. Taking vitamin B6 for morning sickness greatly improves nausea, though not vomiting, for many pregnant women. There has been no sign of harm to the fetus with vitamin B6 use. So, how much B6 should you take for nausea during your first trimester? A typical dose of vitamin B6 for morning sickness is 10 mg to 25 mg, 3 times a day.
Research suggests that ginger may help settle an upset stomach. Try ginger tea, ginger chews, ginger preserves, or ginger ale made with real ginger. You can look for a ginger syrup at your local health foods store, or make one at home with agave and fresh grated ginger. If you’re not fond of the taste of ginger, taking capsules containing ginger can also help.
Over the years there have been immense amounts of research documenting the effectiveness of acupuncture for nausea and vomiting. It is for this exact reason that most health insurance companies actually cover acupuncture for nausea. You should start acupuncture as soon as you start to experience nausea and vomiting in your pregnancy. Beginning earlier helps curb the issue rather than waiting for it to compound and become harder to treat. As a bonus, acupuncture also promotes relaxation, which is always beneficial for moms!
Smelling mint, lemon, or orange may help to alleviate nausea. Try placing a cotton ball or tissue infused with scented oil under your nose. I prefer the cotton ball approach to spraying or diffusing into the air because you can quickly discard it if it doesn’t agree with you. If you find a scent you like, diffusing or spritzing the room you’re in can be a nice way to keep the nausea at bay.
It may sound like a no-brainer, but getting down those 8-10 glasses a day can be extremely hard when all they want to do is come back up. Try infusing water with fruit to make it more palatable – favorites of mine include lemon and fresh mint (bonus for the scent!) and watermelon. I’m pretty sure I could have lived off watermelon water if it was necessary during my first trimester!
When to See Your Doctor
A small number of pregnant women experience a condition known as hyperemesis gravidarum, in which continuous vomiting leads to severe dehydration requiring medical attention. In the hospital, women receive intravenous fluids and medication.
The following are concerning symptoms:
The inability to keep down any food or drinks for more than 12 hours
Signs of dehydration, such as infrequent urination, dark urine, and dizziness when standing
Vomiting many times in one day, especially if there’s blood in the vomit
Abdominal or pelvic pain or cramping
Weight loss of more than 5 pounds
If you experience any of the above symptoms, call your prenatal provider or go to the emergency room.