Pregnancy - morning sickness; Prenatal care - morning sickness
The term "morning sickness" is used to describe nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. Some women also have the symptoms of dizziness and headaches.
More About Morning Sickness
Morning sickness often begins 4 to 6 weeks after conception. It may continue until the 4th month of pregnancy. Some women have morning sickness during their entire pregnancy. This happens most often for women who are carrying more than one baby.
It is called morning sickness because the symptoms are more likely to occur early in the day, but they can occur at any time. For some women, morning sickness lasts all day.
The exact cause of morning sickness is not known.
Morning sickness that is not severe does not hurt your baby in any way. In fact:
When nausea and vomiting are severe, a condition known as hyperemesis gravidarum may be diagnosed.
Eating and Drinking
Changing what you eat may help. Try these tips:
Foods that contain ginger may also help. Some of these are ginger tea and ginger candy, along with ginger ale. Check to see that they have ginger in them rather than just ginger flavoring.
What Else Can I Try?
Try changing how you take your prenatal vitamins.
Some other tips are:
Try acupressure wristbands that apply pressure to specific points on your wrist. Often these are used to ease motion sickness. You can find them at drug stores, health food stores, travel stores, and online.
Try acupuncture. Some acupuncturists are trained to work with pregnant women. Talk to your health care provider beforehand.
Are There Any Drugs To Treat Morning Sickness?
Vitamin B6 (100 mg or less daily) has been shown to ease symptoms of morning sickness. Many providers recommend trying it first before trying other medicines.
Diclegis, a combination of doxylamine succinate and pyridoxine hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating morning sickness.
Do not take any medicines for morning sickness without talking with your provider first. Your provider may not advise medicines to prevent nausea unless your vomiting is severe and will not stop.
In severe cases, you may be admitted to the hospital, where you will receive fluids through an IV (into your vein). Your provider might prescribe other medicines if your morning sickness is severe.
When to Call the Doctor
Matthews A, Haas DM, O'Mathúna DP, Dowswell T. Interventions for nausea and vomiting in early pregnancy. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015;(9):CD007575. PMID: 26348534 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26348534.
West EH, Hark L, Catalano PM. Nutrition during pregnancy. In: Gabbe SG, Niebyl JR, Simpson JL, et al, eds. Obstetrics: Normal and Problem Pregnancies. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2017:chap 7.
Review Date: 9/25/2018
Reviewed By: John D. Jacobson, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda Center for Fertility, Loma Linda, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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