What Can Help For Nausea In Pregnancy by Rebecca at TREAT Norwich

For many women, suffering from nausea in pregnancy can interfere greatly with their quality of life. Commonly called “morning sickness’ nausea with or without vomiting can occur any time during the day or night. It’s unpleasant and in some cases women can be diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum; a severe type of pregnancy sickness that requires specialist care, it can lead to hospitalisation due to dehydration and not getting enough nutrients in your body.  

Nausea in pregnancy does not put your baby at risk and usually clears up by weeks 16-20. Let’s take a look at some very practical ways that women can do themselves to help nausea.

Blood Sugar Balance 

Eating regular small snacks will help stabilize your blood sugars which can help reduce nausea. Eating before you actually get hungry every 1 ½ -2 hours is the key. The snack doesn’t need to be big but regular, but be mindful that overeating can also increase nausea. Sugary foods are best avoided as they can increase your blood sugars rapidly.

It is a common experience that women are naturally turned off from eating healthy options in the first trimester, such as vegetables, salads, brown bread, while more comforting and starchy foods such as white bread, potatoes, meat pies, white pasta can actually help settle the stomach.  In early pregnancy the baby is attached to its own yolk sac for nutritional nourishment, so there is no need for women to feel guilty about not being able to eat a healthy diet at this stage.

Fluid Intake

Drinking regular water and keeping fluid levels up is vital in pregnancy.  During pregnancy water is needed to flush out toxins, help digestion and aid the absorption of nutrients and restore and revitalise the body.  Even slight dehydration can make nausea worse. Signs of dehydration are dry lips, feeling thirsty, and a reduction in urination. Please notify your midwife or GP if your urine output is greatly diminished.

Smells

Many women notice changes in their sensitivity to certain smells which can greatly increase nausea. Some women are unable to cope with cooking smells or smells of other people, open the fridge, use toiletries/cleaning products or smell coffee.

The following tips may be helpful:

-Put sliced lemons or limes in a jar and smell them when you experience sensitive smells. If you go out place a hole in the end of a lemon or lime and wrap in kitchen roll.

-Use a diffuser of peppermint oil in the room you are in.

-Change toiletry/cleaning products.

-Ask someone else to do the cooking for you.

Acupressure points for Nausea in Pregnancy

Here are 3x Acupressure points which are well known for nausea which you can press.  The acupressure technique is very simple, it is not a massage technique but rather a firm continuous pressure.

  • Usually acupressure points are more sensitive than surrounding areas, which will help you know that you are in the right place.
  • Press every point until a numbing feeling is produced approximately 30 secs at a time, you can press all three points in a sequence and then repeat as many times as you feel you need.
  • Some points produce a stronger effect than others, so test and work out which ones are best for you.
  • You can repeat pressing the points as often as you want. There is no limit on the number of exercises per day.
  • If someone else is pressing the points ask them to press both left and right at the same time. If you are doing a self treatment press one side and then the other.
  • When applying deep pressure the active point is expected to hurt initially. If it is too painful reduce the pressure to a “comfortable” level but persist with pressure on the active point so you still have a good sensation. Increase the pressure as the initial painful sensation begins to subside. Continue the massage until a numbing feeling is produced.

Nausea in pregnancyLocation: in the hollow under the collar bone, next to the breastbone. To find the point follow the clavicle until it connects to the breastbone where the tender point is. If you have difficulty following the clavicle bone, move your shoulder back and forth. Images illustrating location of acupuncture points (deadman et al, 2007).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nausea in pregnancyLocation: on the interior side of the arm, in the hollow between the bones of the forearm and between the two tendons, three finger-widths above the wrist crease. Images illustrating location of acupuncture points (deadman et al, 2007).

N.B Sea sickness bands are often applied to this point with good success.

 

 

 

 

 

Nausea in pregnancy

Location: in the depression directly below inner ankle bone. Images illustrating location of acupuncture points (deadman et al, 2007).

 

 

 

 

 

If you struggle to find the acupressure points, please contact our Acupuncture team at treat-Norwich Complementary Clinic which who will be more than happy to help you find the right points. Or book into our Community Multi-Bed Clinic for Acupuncture for £24 a treatment.

Rebecca Geanty

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