Pregnancy Morning Sickness

What is Morning Sickness?

Morning sickness is most likely one of the first pregnancy symptoms you will experience. These early signs of pregnancy are often referred to as nausea and vomiting of pregnancy (NVP), and it affects between 50-80% of all pregnant women.

Contrary to what the term may suggest, it does not always, or only, occur in the morning. You may experience an increase in nausea at any time of day, particularly if you do not eat often enough, causing your blood sugar to drop.

When Does Morning Sickness Start?

Nausea is one of the first signs of pregnancy and is very common in the early stages. It starts somewhere between the fourth and sixth week of pregnancy and is therefore one of the first pregnancy signs.

For most women, morning sickness will disappear by the 14th to 16th week. Some women experience NVP throughout their entire pregnancy. There are several factors at play including pregnancy hormones and higher sensitivity to odors.

Hyperemesis Gravidarum

This is a rare and severe form of morning sickness and can require hospitalization to restore lost fluids and weight. Hyperemesis Gravidarum is more than just a severe vase of morning sickness symptoms.

A woman with Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) will experience severe and persistent vomiting and can lose more than a fifth of her body weight. This frequent vomiting may lead to dehydration and vitamin deficiency. It can also negatively affect a woman's social and physical well being. The exact causes of HG are not known, although it is believed to be a combination of physiological, psychological and sociological factors.

While some doctors believe that the babies of women affected with HG have lower birth weights, most doctors have found no differences in the children of pregnancies impacted by HG and those that aren't. If you do experience severe and persistent vomiting and have noticed weight loss, visit your doctor to discuss treatment.

Why Morning Sickness Isn’t All Bad

Just how much a woman suffers from morning sickness during her pregnancy varies from woman to woman. Some may be miserable day in and day out while others are lucky enough to only endure a bit of morning sickness from time to time. Whether you are dealing with a lot of morning sickness or just a little, new research has found that morning sickness is actually helpful for your baby.

Ironically, morning sickness can help ensure that you are providing your developing fetus with proper nutrition. This is due to the insulin that is released with food intake: insulin increases a mother’s metabolism of fat at the expense of her baby’s.

Therefore, morning sickness will help make sure that your baby gets its nutrients. But does this mean that if you don’t have morning sickness, your baby won’t be healthy? Not at all!

While some studies have found that women who experience miscarriage are less likely to have had morning sickness, it is important to remember that many women have perfectly normal, healthy pregnancies despite a lack of morning sickness. Following a healthy and nutritious diet will help ensure that your baby develops properly, regardless of your morning sickness symptoms.

Some Morning Sickness Remedies


In recent studies, ginger was found to be an effective morning sickness remedy. Although herbal supplements are usually not recommended for a pregnant woman, ginger was found to have no apparent side effects. Studies are still being run, as the active ingredient within this herbal remedy is not known.

It was also found that countries with heavy concentrations of ginger in their diet have less NVP symptoms. As far as morning sickness remedies go, ginger is easy to incorporate into your lifestyle. You may want to add ginger to your recipes. Talk to your doctor about starting ginger herbal supplements.

Listening to CDs

New research has found that putting on headphones and listening to specially formatted CD's can ease the symptoms of morning sickness. It has been proven that morning sickness is caused by signals that are sent from your brain to your gut. Using frequencies and pulses disguised by pleasant music, these signals are interrupted and symptoms cease. For some women, the nausea never returns.

Other Helpful Tips

  • If you feel sick in the mornings, give yourself time to get up slowly
  • Eat dry or a plain biscuit for breakfast if you have morning sickness (ask your partner to bring you breakfast in bed)
  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Eat small amounts often rather than several large meals
  • Avoid the foods and smells that make you feel worse
  • Eating foods that contain ginger may be helpful
  • Ask the people around you to help you out when you are feeling sick or tired
  • Make yourself busy - the more you think of the problem the worse it can get
  • Wear clothes that aren't too tight around the waist
  • Get as much sleep and rest as you can

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i had the worst morning sickness for like the first 14 weeks of my pregnancy. every little food smell set me off---my husband cooked salmon one night and the house smelt so bad i had to go sleep at a friends till he could air the smell out. i was nauseous all the time. so far this has been the worst pregnancy symptom i have experienced. thank god it is finally over. but i still can\'t stand the sight, smell or taste of eggs. if my husband makes them i can still even smell their scent on the dish and pan he used, and this after he scrubbed them clean with scented soap. morning sickness really sucks, just try to make it through the early weeks when it is the worst.
13 years ago