They call it morning sickness. Surely this name should have been axed by now for reasons of total inaccuracy?
That feeling that you’re about to be sick, that you will throw up if anything catches in your throat or you so much as catch a whiff of a gherkin, does not just hit in the morning.
For me it was all day, every day for the first 20 weeks in my first pregnancy and the first 24 weeks in my second pregnancy.
Yes, I did keep track. Because those were the absolute longest weeks of my life.
I felt sick from the moment I woke up, to the moment I went back to bed. I never actually was sick. I just felt like I was right on the cusp of throwing up. All. The. Time.
For a few weeks in my first pregnancy I had the most horrendous taste in my mouth as well, which made the nausea even worse. A salt water rinse curbed that problem a bit, but the nausea was far trickier to beat.
If you’re experiencing this now, I feel so sorry for you. It’s absolute hell.
When nausea is combined with other unpleasant pregnancy symptoms it can make things even harder!
So here’s a survival guide with tips and advice on beating the pregnancy nausea:
Not drinking enough water will make you feel even more low. Find something you can stomach, whether it’s plain water or something fizzy. You should be drinking six to eight 200ml glasses of fluids a day.
This keeps you and your baby healthy.
If you’re anything like me though everything, even plain water, made me feel rubbish. The trick is to sip it slowly all of the time. Have a bottle of water with you within reach constantly.
Avoid sugary foods
Chocolate and sweets can trigger and worsen your morning sickness.
Try to avoid sugary snacks – particularly as they won’t be giving your body any of the crucial nutrients it needs right now.
Stick to fruit or dry crackers and bagels for snacks.
Travel sickness bands
Acupressure bands are pretty cheap on Amazon but they can give a bit of relief. I found they took the edge off slightly on the less intense days, however they weren’t a total cure.
They’re a nice low maintenance way to tackle your morning sickness.
Remember to eat something
If you eat nothing at all you’re going to be dizzy on top of feeling nauseous which isn’t a good combination.
There may be only one type of food you can cope with right now. That’s ok. Eat it.
Remember to take a pregnancy multi-vitamin to make sure your baby and you are getting all of the nutrients you need at this crucial time.
Carbs can be much easier to cope with when you’re struggling with morning sickness. Things like potatoes and toast may be easier to stomach than rich and full-flavoured foods.
I tried ginger in many different forms, including sweet ginger sweets. In the end for me it was ginger biscuits that helped.
Have a packet in the house and nibble on them as often as you want.
It can be a good idea to eat a ginger biscuit first thing in the morning. This puts something in your stomach before it gets the chance to start churning. Have a pack right next to your bedside so you can grab one before you get up.
Identify your triggers and avoid them
Figure out any smell or food that makes your nausea worse and ban them from the house.
Ask for help to do this so you have as little contact with the offending items as possible.
With my second pregnancy I got to a point where I just couldn’t cope any longer and went to see a GP.
There are anti-nausea medications that have no known side effects that cause problems with pregnancy. If it’s disrupting your day, every day, seek help.
Ditch the guilt
If you have to take a day off work so you can rest, then do it!
A good employer who is following the law surrounding pregnancy discrimination and wellbeing of their employees will understand. Don’t feel like you have to prove anything at this moment in time. Your health is more important than any meeting, report or email that has to be answered.
Ask if you can work from home for a day if that makes you feel better.
If you do still want to travel into work and are using public transport, don’t be afraid to ask people for their seat, even if you’re only 10 weeks pregnant.
You don’t need a bump to be able to ask people if they’ll help you out. London Underground send free Baby on Board badges to pregnant mamas. Just visit their website here.
I wore my badge before 12 weeks because I felt so bloody awful. I just took it off before I arrived at work.
Patience and rest
Unfortunately it can just be a matter of riding it out until this sickly nightmare ends.
Don’t forget that at the end of all of this struggling to get through every day, there will be a beautiful baby waiting for you.
How to keep your pregnancy secret when you have morning sickness
Morning sickness can make it very difficult for you to keep your pregnancy a secret.
This is especially the case if you are rushing to the toilet to be sick every few minutes. Most people will realise after a week that this is not just a simple tummy bug.
If you are in the first trimester or have not yet had a chance to tell loved ones, then you won’t want to tell your work colleagues just yet perhaps.
Try to take days off where the morning sickness is really bad, and use the above tips to try to keep the morning sickness at bay on the very worst days.
I hope these tips were useful! Remember, take care of yourself and put your feet up whenever you can.
Read more about your pregnancy journey here:
20 things pregnant mums need to know about the first trimester
20 things pregnant mums need to know about the second trimester
20 things pregnant women need to know about the third trimester