Skip to main content

Mendo Lake Family Life

Good Mornings

By Cheryl Maguire

Are you feeling nausea during your pregnancy? If so, I feel your pain. It has been more than 10 years since I was pregnant, but I still remember that awful queasy feeling. 

During my first pregnancy with twins, I experienced morning sickness all day. In fact, I felt the sickest at night time. During my second pregnancy with a single baby, I thought I would feel better especially since I knew what to expect and I was only having one baby. But it was worse, much worse. Chasing after toddler twins only left me feeling more nauseous. During both pregnancies, I had morning sickness until I reached my sixth month of pregnancy.

According to biologist Margie Profet, morning sickness is an evolutionary adaptation, which defends a fetus from natural contaminants. Studies have shown that women who experience morning sickness are less likely to miscarry.

The American Pregnancy Association found that most women experience morning sickness from the sixth week to the 12th week. More than 50 percent of pregnant women have some form of nausea due to the increase in the pregnancy hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG).

Nothing I did cured my morning sickness but these remedies helped me to feel better even if only for a short while. Of course, before you try any of these methods you should discuss it with your doctor.

Eat When You First Wake Up: I always had a box of crackers on my nightstand. Before I got out of bed I would eat a few crackers. An empty stomach can increase nausea due to stomach acid so eating even a few crackers will help decrease the feeling. It also helps throughout the day to eat small snacks to make sure your stomach is never empty.

Drink Lemonade: Lemon is an alkaline that reduces irritation in your stomach. Some people also find the smell of lemons reduces nausea. I don’t like lemonade but I was willing to try anything and I did notice some relief after drinking it.

Consider Ginger: Ginger is a spice that has a calming effect on your stomach since it promotes the secretion of digestive enzymes that help neutralize stomach acid. It also contains phenols that relax stomach muscles. You can sprinkle it on your food or try drinking Ginger Ale but make sure it states “made with real ginger” on the bottle. Ginger candy or capsules are also available.

Chew Some Gum: For me, chewing gum was the most effective method in helping me to feel better, especially since I could chew gum all day long (whereas I couldn’t drink lemonade all day). Similar to ginger, chewing gum causes you to produce extra saliva which neutralizes stomach acidity. Peppermint or spearmint gum will aid nausea symptoms since it contains menthol which has an antispasmodic effect relieving indigestion.

Lie Down: It may be difficult to lie down, especially if you are caring for other children or you are at work but sometimes it is the only way to feel better. I found motion (as simple as walking) could cause my morning sickness to get worse so lying down would help settle my stomach. Deep breathing while lying down can calm both your mind and abdomen.

B6 Vitamin: A study by Dr. Jennifer Niebyl found that taking 25 mg of B-6 three times a day helped women cope with morning sickness. I used this vitamin and can confirm it did make me feel better.

Even if you have morning sickness during your entire pregnancy, once the baby is born it will all be forgotten and worth all the suffering. Until of course, someone mentions their morning sickness and you can’t help but feel a little queasy yourself. Here’s hoping one or more of these tips help ease those rude awakenings that sometimes last all day long. 

Cheryl Maguire holds a Master of Counseling Psychology degree. She is married and is the mother of twins and a daughter. Her writing has been published in The New York Times, Parents Magazine, AARP, and many other publications. She is a professional member of ASJA. You can find her on X @CherylMaguire05.