3 Natural Solutions for Common Pregnancy Related Symptoms
Treating pregnant women, I constantly get the question, “what is a natural remedy for morning sickness (or another pregnancy related symptom)”. So I thought I would write an educational blog for all the soon-to-be mommies. Pregnancy is a very exciting time in a woman’s life. But for some women it’s not always rainbows and butterflies.
When a woman is pregnant, her body is undergoing hundreds of physiological and hormonal changes at a very rapid rate. Because of these changes, many women suffer from pregnancy related symptoms. I’ve heard everything from back pain and headaches to craving peanut butter and pickle sandwiches. But what are you supposed to do about these ailments, just be miserable for 9+ months? Most people know it is not safe to take most medications during pregnancy; but what they don’t know is how to deal with the “pains” of growing a human.
So I’m going to tell you a few natural solutions for some of the most common symptoms of pregnancy. We’ll start with the peanut butter and pickle sandwich craving…just kidding.
“Morning Sickness”- Morning sickness is the general term given to nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, caused by the increase in estrogen levels in the first trimester. It was coined “morning sickness” because most women experience it when they wake or shortly after breakfast, although it can occur at any time of day. Staying hydrated and having adequate vitamin levels is one way to decrease nausea and vomiting. Here are some natural ways to do this:
- Electrolyte-infused water- replenishes/balances electrolytes to restore hydration
- Mineral Supplementation- B12, Iron, Iodine, Zinc, Manganese, and Copper help restore electrolytes and encourage nutrient absorption
- Vitamin-B Complex- B6 and B12 taken daily help decrease nausea and vomiting
- Whole-Food Prenatal Vitamins- some women experience upset stomach from their prescribed prenatals, trying a “whole-food based” prenatal vitamin (available at most health food stores) is usually easier on the stomach
- Ginger or Peppermint tea- calms upset stomachs
Back Pain and Headaches- As the baby grows and matures, the mother’s body and posture begin to change drastically. Increased weight in the front of the body causes extra stress on the muscles and joints of the neck and low back. The overworked muscles and joints often lead to headaches and low back pain. Try these natural approaches to musculoskeletal aches and pains:
- Prenatal Massage- reduces muscular tension and pain
- Yoga/stretching- decreases muscle tightness allowing for better posture and mobility
- Chiropractic care- focuses on proper joint function, reducing joint stress, resulting in neck pain, low back pain and headache relief
Indigestion and Reflux- Indigestion is another common symptom of pregnancy caused by an increase in hormones. The surge of hormones relaxes the muscles of the digestive tract, slowing down the digestive process. Common symptoms include nausea, bloating, stomach “burning”, gas/belching, and acid reflux. Here are some great solutions:
- Probiotic Supplementation- Lactobacillus, Acidophilus, and Bifidobacterium are naturally occurring “good bacteria” found in the digestive tract which promote healthy and speedy digestion. [Probiotics are also a safe way to fight yeast infections during pregnancy.]
- Ginger and Peppermint tea- as mentioned before, are helpful for stomach soothing
- Eat smaller meal
- Take a walk after meals
Pregnancy does not have to be miserable. It should be a joyous experience. You should feel healthy and confident that you are creating the safest environment for your little one to grow. I encourage you to try some of these natural tips to help you feel more comfortable during this exciting time in your life.
Dr. Sarah Geringer