Here’s an estimate that might shock you: as many as 80% of pregnant women experience morning sickness or some form of nausea during their pregnancy. Fortunately, the morning sickness doesn’t last throughout the entire pregnancy. It tends to peak around the 9th week and disappear around the 20th week. Unfortunately, nearly three months of battling nausea can be tough on anyone.
Because of concerns for the baby, more and more women are turning to natural remedies for their morning sickness. However, even natural remedies require caution. For instance, the three most common natural remedies for morning sickness are ginger tea, acupressure wristbands, and peppermint oil. Yet these remedies can cause mild adverse reactions such as skin irritation due to the wristbands or the intolerable taste of the ginger.
You do have other choices, however. Here’s a short list of steps you can take immediately to help relieve your morning sickness…
- Eat frequent, smaller meals so you never feel too hungry or too full.
- Avoid fried or fatty foods.
- Eat crackers, bread, toast, cereal and other bland foods throughout the day. Eat something from this list before you get out of bed in the morning.
- Drink plenty of fluids, especially between meals.
- Keep a record of your activities and the foods you eat in order to identify what tends to trigger your nausea.
If these steps aren’t helpful, then you might want to consider trying one of natural remedies listed above. Let’s take a closer look at these…
A very small percentage of pregnant women experience hyperemesis gravidarium, which is a severe form of morning sickness that can result in weight loss, dehydration, and potentially hospitalization. Several studies have demonstrated that regular, several-times-a-day acupuncture sessions can be helpful in minimizing this form of nausea and vomiting.
In addition, acupuncture wrist bands (also known as sea bands) that stimulate the pericardium (p6) acupuncture point can be effective. The wrist band consists of a plastic button that applies pressure on the p6 point inside the wrist. This is a form of traditional Chinese medicine used to relieve nausea, and it generally works immediately. You can find an acupuncture wrist band online or at your local health food store. They’re generally reasonably priced.
Ginger is a popular natural remedy for morning sickness. It’s been used for this purpose for centuries, and after numerous medical trials, is generally recognized as safe. However, ginger does contain substances that can potentially cause birth defects. For this reason, taking higher doses (over 500 mg) during pregnancy is generally unadvisable. In addition, there are concerns that ginger can prolong bleeding time and interfere with platelet aggregation, though studies focused on the first trimester found no notable difference in the number or miscarriages, stillbirths and malformations.
Ginger is commonly taken in hot water as a tea. It can also be consumed as ginger soda, gingersnaps or in capsule form.
Peppermint Essential Oil
Nausea can be minimized by using the aroma of peppermint. It’s relatively easy to create your own peppermint aroma bowl. Fill a large bowl with hot water, add two drops of peppermint essential oil, and you’re all set. Keep the bowl on a nightstand near where you sleep and see if it doesn’t help.
As with any medical treatment or natural remedy, always consult with your physician first. Some natural remedies can work against medications, others can have hidden side effects that your physician can caution you about.
About the Author:
David Silva is the webmaster for Alternative Medicine First, a website dedicated to the dissemination of information about alternative medicine, including various practices such as acupuncture, biofeedback, Traditional Chinese Medicine, massage, yoga and others.