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Pregnancy: Dealing With Morning Sickness

Overview

Morning sickness can be the toughest part of early pregnancy. Some people feel mildly sick to their stomach, and others are running to the bathroom. The good news? Morning sickness usually gets better in the second trimester.

It's likely that your hormones are to blame for morning sickness. But you can do things to feel better, like changing what you eat, avoiding certain foods and smells, and asking your doctor about medicines you can try.

How can you manage morning sickness?

If you have morning sickness, try these tips to feel better.

  • Eat five or six small meals a day.

    It's helpful to always have some food in your stomach, but not too much.

  • Eat a small snack first thing in the morning.

    Keep a few crackers by your bed, so you can eat them before you get out of bed.

  • Drink lots of fluids.

    Peppermint or ginger tea can be good choices. Water and sports drinks are also good.

  • Try to avoid foods and smells that make you feel sick.

    These often include spicy or greasy foods, citrus juice, milk, coffee, and tea with caffeine. Try to connect what you're eating with the times when you feel worst. Even if you have to give up pizza for a short time, it can be worth it!

  • Take your prenatal vitamins at night.

    And make sure you have something in your stomach when you take them.

  • Talk to your doctor or midwife about other things that may help.

    If you're taking iron supplements, ask if they're needed. (Iron can make nausea worse.) And ask if vitamin B6, doxylamine, or ginger might be a good idea.

  • Try acupressure wrist bands.

    Some women find that these anti-nausea wristbands help. You can buy them at most drugstores.

Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • You passed out (lost consciousness).

Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You are sick to your stomach or cannot drink fluids.
  • You have symptoms of dehydration, such as:
    • Dry eyes and a dry mouth.
    • Passing only a little urine.
    • Feeling thirstier than usual.
  • You are not able to keep down your medicine.
  • You have pain in your belly or pelvis.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:

  • You do not get better as expected.

Credits

Current as of: February 23, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Kirtly Jones MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology

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