The article was consulted professionally by Master, Dr Trinh Thi Thanh Huyen – Obstetrics and Gynecology Department – Share99 Hai Phong International Health Hub.
Sickness during pregnancy is a very unpleasant condition for women, which can significantly affect daily life. However, pregnancy is a biological phenomenon, so it does not affect the baby at all, except in severe cases.
1. General overview
Sickness is a common sign of pregnancy, manifested by feelings of nausea and sometimes real vomiting. When pregnant with the English name "morning sickness", this sign can cause discomfort to the pregnant woman at any time of the day, not just in the morning. Up to 90% of women experience nausea or vomiting to varying degrees during pregnancy.
Sickness usually appears during 14 weeks of pregnancy and this is almost the first sign that a woman is pregnant. Some women may also suffer from prolonged sickness throughout pregnancy.
There are different ways to alleviate sickness, which is also very rare leading to complications. Despite the controversy, some studies have found women with little or no sickness have higher rates of miscarriage. Another theory is that pregnancy is a natural way for the mother to stay away from potentially harmful substances for the newly developed fetus.
2. Causes of sickness
There is no exact cause of pregnancy sickness, and the severity of sickness varies from woman to woman. Increased hormone levels in the first few weeks of pregnancy are the most common cause. Reducing blood sugar levels is another reason for sickness. Nausea and vomiting are also often triggered by some strong odors, hot spicy food, saliva … or even no effects.
People who often experience nausea or vomiting due to motion sickness, migraines, allergies to certain smells or tastes are also more susceptible to bingeing during pregnancy. Other factors that can aggravate sickness include:
- First pregnancy;
- Twins or triples;
- Pregnant girl;
- Had been seriously ill before;
- Families with a history of severe illness;
- Exposure to estrogen (e.g. in contraceptive pills) before pregnancy;
- Weak, too tired;
- Obesity (BMI of ≥ 30);
- Stressful, emotional;
- Travel frequently.
In a woman, sickness may also vary between pregnancies. For example, you used to get seriously ill when you were pregnant with your first child, but in the next pregnancies you may have a very mild pregnancy.
Rare cases, severe and prolonged nausea or vomiting are caused by a pathology unacular to pregnancy – such as thyroid disease, liver or urinary tract infections (UTI).
3. Complications of sickness
Nausea and vomiting easily lead to anorexia, so many pregnant women worry that this will adversely affect the baby in the abdomen. In fact, mild sickness usually does not cause harm. Pregnancy is usually not so severe that it interferes with fetal growth and development.
For some pregnant women, feelings of nausea and vomiting cause them to lose weight severely. This is known as Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG), which causes electrolyte imbalances and uns controlled weight loss. If not treated, the condition carries a serious risk of dehydration or a reduction of more than 5% of body weight before pregnancy, the most dangerous is to harm your baby.
Call your doctor immediately if you present:
- Constant vomiting, ina control;
- Loss of 1-2 kg or more;
- Urination / squeeze, dark-colored urine;
- Dizziness, dizziness or fainting;
- Heart beats fast;
- Severe nausea in the second trimepcle;
- Vomiting blood;
- Frequent headaches;
- Abdominal pain;
- Hemorrhage or vaginal blood spots.
Severely ill pregnant women often have to be hospitalized and intravenously (IV) to rehydrating. If you are still sick after the first 3-4 months of pregnancy, or if you do not gain enough weight during pregnancy, you should also go to the hospital for examination.
4. Treatment of sickness
4.1. Prescription drugs
There is no firmly effective treatment for sickness. Every woman, even every pregnancy in one person, will be different. However, your doctor may prescribe supplements or nausea medications and help pregnant women eat better. Prescription drugs include:
- Antihistamines: Helps reduce nausea and motion loss;
- Phenothiazine: Severe nausea and vomiting control;
- Metoclopramide (Reglan): Helps the stomach accelerate food into the intestines and combat nausea, vomiting;
- An acidic drug: Absorbs stomach acid and helps prevent acid reflux;
Note that pregnant women are not allowed to take these drugs without a doctor's prescription.
4.2. Alternative therapy
Some people find that alternatives can also help alleviate pregnancy,such as:
- Vitamin B-6 supplements;
- Multivitamins for pre-birth pregnant women;
- Ginger extracts, such as alcohol, tea and syrup;
- Salty biscuits;
If you want to test these treatments, you still need to discuss them with your doctor in advance.
Based on your symptoms, your doctor may require some tests to ensure that both mother and baby are safe. Specifically:
- Urine test :Helps determine if you are dehydration;
- Blood bio bio bio-screening: Includes a full blood count (CBC) test, electrolycular,… to determine if you are malnourished, or lack certain vitamins, anemia;
- Ultrasound: Checks if the fetus is growing at a healthy rate.
5. Prevent sickness
Some of the following tips can help pregnant women prevent or minimize nausea:
- Drink plenty of water, before and after meals;
- Keep your home and workplace ventilated;
- Remove the scent that makes you nauseous;
- Avoid tobacco smoke, spicy and fatty foods;
- Eat a lot of small meals during the day;
- Snack before leaving bed in the morning and throughout the day;
- Take additional vitamin supplements at night.
If no remedy works for you, or if you still have a pregnancy after the first 3-4 months, then it is important to present it to your doctor. In addition, before starting to stop any drugs or experimental measures, it is necessary to consult a doctor clearly about these options.
At Share99 International Health Hub, there is a full maternity service as a solution to help pregnant mothers feel secure because there is a team of doctors throughout the pregnancy. When choosing a full-service maternity, a pregnant woman can:
- The pregnancy process is monitored by a team of highly specialized doctors
- Regular examination, early detection of abnormalities
- Package maternity for the convenience of childbirth
- Infants receive comprehensive care
Master. Dr. Trinh Thi Thanh Huyen is highly trained in obstetric ultrasound, laparoscopic surgery and endoscopy at the National Health Hub of Obstetrics and Gynecology and has more than 13 years of experience working at Hai Phong Obstetrics and Gynecology Health Hub.
Currently, the doctor is a doctor of obstetrics and gynecology at Share99 Hai Phong International Health Hub
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Reference source: healthline.com; mayoclinic.org; webmd.com; nhs.uk
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