Your Body's Changes
At this point in your pregnancy, you might not notice any significant changes in shape and size. You may feel some of the following changes, though. Note which you are experiencing so you can look back on the progress of your pregnancy and discuss any concerns you have with your healthcare provider.
You feel slightly bloated, and your waistband begins to feel a bit snug.
Your breasts are starting to increase in size.
The areolas around your nipples enlarge and darken.
Your breasts are more tender.
Vaginal secretions increase, similar to those you get premenstrually.
You may feel tired and run down. (Grab a nap during the day or make an early bedtime a priority.)
You may feel faint or dizzy. (Sit or lay down on your side as soon as possible. Try not to lay flat on your back as this can make the dizziness worse.)
About three-quarters of pregnant women have morning sickness during their first trimester. Called nausea and vomiting of pregnancy (NVP) by the medical profession, morning sickness is arguably the most debilitating and prevalent of pregnancy symptoms. The following treatments have been associated with some success in lessening morning sickness.
Eat ginger. Ginger snaps and other foods and teas that contain ginger (Zingiber officinale) may be helpful in settling your stomach.
Try acupressure. Sometimes used to ward off motion sickness and seasickness, acupressure wristbands called Sea-Bands place pressure on what is called the P6, or Nei-Kuan, acupressure point. Available at most drugstores, they are an inexpensive and noninvasive way to treat morning sickness.
Consider B vitamins. Vitamin B1 (otherwise known as thiamin) and vitamin B6 have reduced morning sickness symptoms in several clinical trials. Talk with your doctor or midwife before taking any supplements.
Eat smaller, more frequent meals. An empty stomach produces acid that can make you feel worse. Low blood sugar causes nausea.
Choose proteins and complex carbohydrates. Protein-rich foods—such as yogurt and beans—and complex carbs—such as whole-grain breads—are good for the two of you, and may calm your stomach.
Eat what you like. Most pregnant women have at least one food aversion. If broccoli turns your stomach, don't force it. The better foods look and taste the more likely they are to stay down.
Drink plenty of fluids. Don't get dehydrated. If you're vomiting, you need to replace those lost fluids. Some women report better tolerance of beverages if they are taken between meals rather than with them.
Avoid strong smells and tastes. The heightened sense of smell many women experience in pregnancy can set your stomach off. Try avoiding foods with a strong odor, like fish. The same goes for spicy foods; bland is often best when you're dealing with nausea.
Brush regularly. Keeping your mouth fresh can cut down on the excess saliva that plagues some pregnant women and contributes to nausea. Breath mints may be helpful, too.
Talk to your provider about switching prenatal vitamins. Iron is notoriously tough on the stomach, so your provider might recommend a supplement with a lower or extended release amount.
Morning Sickness Survival Kit
If your stomach won't behave but you have to commute to work or elsewhere, put together a morning sickness survival kit for the car. Include the following items:
Gum or breath mints
Large freezer-grade zip-top bags
Small bottle of water
Graham or soda crackers
Travel-sized toothbrush and toothpaste
Just-in-case change of clothes