Pregnancy is such an exciting chapter, but it can also come with some enormous changes to your body. Hormonal changes of pregnancy can cause discomforts such as morning sickness, breast changes, constipation, haemorrhoids, fatigue and mood swings. Knowing about these pregnancy discomforts can help you understand the best way to manage them.
MORNING SICKNESS IN PREGNANCY
Morning sickness impacts around 70-80% of pregnancies and refers to feeling nauseous or vomiting in pregnancy. Although it is termed morning sickness it is often not restrained to occurring only in the mornings.
Morning sickness often peaks at 9 weeks gestation and in most pregnancies has eased by 13 weeks.
WAYS TO HELP WITH MORNING SICKNESS INCLUDE:
Try to have something to eat before getting out of bed in the morning, crackers can be great for this.
Eating small more regular meals. This will prevent your stomach from being empty, which can make nausea worse. Foods high in protein can help you feel less nauseous also.
Suck on ice chips throughout the day. Chances are you won’t be able to stomach a big glass of water, so sucking ice chips will help with the nausea as well as making sure you stay hydrated. If you can’t stomach ice chips try sipping on warm water throughout the day.
Suck on fruit tingles
Sea bands and acupressure
Make the most of your best time of day, when you feel the least nauseous, to get outside in the fresh air for a walk or to just sit.
During pregnancy your breasts may become more sensitive, larger and sore. This is due to the increased blood volume to the breasts and the development of more breast tissue in preparation for breastfeeding.
TO HELP WITH THE DISCOMFORTS OF BREAST CHANGES:
Make sure you have a well supportive bra that is not too tight. If you find bras uncomfortable, then go without!!
You can ice your breasts using the BodyICE Woman Breast Pads if they feel hot and/or swollen.
Wear loose fitting clothing
CONSTIPATION IN PREGNANCY
The hormones of pregnancy can cause your digestive system to slow down and for the food to move through the intestines at a much slower rate.
This along with the body reabsorbing more water back into the body can cause constipation.
WAYS TO REDUCE CONSTIPATION:
- Increase your water intake, this will reduce the amount of water that is reabsorbed from the stool back into the body and therefore make it easier for you to open your bowels.
- Increase your fibre intake as this will help soften your stool and encourage mobility through the intestines.
- Exercise daily, this doesn’t mean going for a run or going to the gym but can be as simple as going for a walk.
- Eat dates
- Iron tablets can make constipation worse, try taking these tablets just before bed
Often haemorrhoids in pregnancy are caused by constipation, hard stools and straining while on the toilet.
WAYS TO REDUCE HAEMORRHOIDS:
- Avoid sitting and straining on the toilet
- Increase fibre intake
- Try to avoid constipation
- Increase fluid intake
- Use BodyICE Woman Perineum Strip on your haemorrhoids for relief
- Talk to your chemist about over the counter creams to help with haemorrhoids
Growing a tiny human is absolutely exhausting!! Although you can’t see the changes of pregnancy yet, your body is making enormous changes to support your baby’s growth and development. This can leave you with a fatigue like you’ve never known before.
WAYS TO HELP WITH PREGNANCY FATIGUE:
- Lots of naps, even short 20-30 minute naps can help refresh you.
- Try to go to bed early at night time to maximise the amount of sleep you’re getting
- Try to wind down properly before bed with meditation, a warm bath or reading
- Limit the use of devices right before bed
- Your doctor may also check your iron levels to see if this may be further impacting your energy levels
The hormonal changes, physical changes and practical changes (such as financial, work, body image) that come with having a baby all impact your mental health.
This can lead to you becoming more snappy, angry and moody. It is important to try to talk to your partner about issues that are worrying you or upsetting you so that you can work through them together.
If you feel that you are not coping or things are starting to overwhelm you, it is important to talk to your healthcare provider.