Pregnancy is a whirlwind time full of changes, both physical and emotional. While some symptoms, such as that famous pregnancy “glow,” can brighten an otherwise uncomfortable nine months, others are less pleasant. Most of these changes will be due to your hormonal levels fluctuating, which, in turn, causes different types of discomforts.
Having a bun in the oven doesn’t mean you have to put up with the heat of the kitchen. Here are seven root causes of your most common pregnancy discomforts.
Hormonal changes, low blood sugar, poor sleep, constipation, and stress are all things that can cause a pregnancy headache. While headaches are widespread in the first trimester, intense headaches in the second or third trimester are alarming signs of preeclampsia.
Proper nutrition, adequate fluid intake, and proper rest are all measures you can take to lessen headache and migraine symptoms while you’re expecting.
Heartburn and indigestion
Heartburn affects over fifty percent of pregnant women, particularly after the first trimester. It is commonly accompanied by indigestion, making you feel gassy, full, and bloated.
Common causes for heartburn and indigestion are eating too late at night or eating spicy, acidic, and high-fat foods. Try to eat smaller meals during the day, don’t lie down directly after eating, and avoid trigger foods like those listed previously.
Many women have that famous pregnancy nausea known as morning sickness. Some women have the urge to vomit, and others actually do lose their lunches throughout the first trimester. This symptom worsens when you are overly tired or stressed. Eating or smelling certain foods may also produce nausea.
Try soothing your stomach with ginger or taking a short walk in brisk air to calm an upset stomach.
Varicose veins come from an increased blood volume which creates more pressure on your veins. These enlarged veins usually appear on your legs. However, pregnant women can also find them near their vaginal area or buttocks.
Additionally, a growing uterus creates pressure on the veins transporting blood from the feet and legs to the heart. You can elevate your legs and try to stay off your feet in the later stages of the pregnancy as you become heavier.
Swelling, bloating, and retaining fluids
As the body and the uterus grow during pregnancy, extra fluid builds up. This fluid helps to soften the body, allowing it to expand more quickly. The swelling is called “edema” and ramps up in the third trimester.
For relief, elevating the legs, wearing a support hose, lying on your side, and wearing comfortable shoes are all things you can try to lessen the swelling. Severe and persistent swelling may be a sign of preeclampsia, so consult your doctor if you’re concerned about any symptoms.
Backaches are a response to the expected weight gains that a woman undertakes due to being pregnant. The weight gain causes your center of gravity to pull forward, leading to a strain on the back muscles.
Making a concerted effort to maintain proper posture and practice correct lifting techniques during pregnancy can help you reduce the strain on your back.
Fatigue and lack of energy
A lack of energy results from the energy a baby drains to grow. Often fatigue is due to anemia or low blood iron, which is normal during pregnancy.
Take naps or breaks as needed during the day, and be sure to catch plenty of winks at night.
Pregnancy may not always be a walk in the park, but the pregnancy-discomfort remedies above should help alleviate some of the pain you could experience.
If you have discomfort or pain that’s excessive or you suspect there’s a severe problem, consult your OBGYN immediately. That said, pregnancy can be a wonderful experience, so don’t forget to enjoy the time spent with your pea in the pod.