While some of them are largely spared, others experience several at once: pregnancy problems. We’ll tell you what you can do about nausea, water retention and the like!
Causes of pregnancy problems
Most pregnancy symptoms are related to hormonal changes and physical changes. The uterus takes up more and more space, the ligaments and muscles loosen and the pregnancy hormones increase rapidly. The fact that your baby is growing, becoming heavier and taking up more space in your body also contributes to the typical symptoms of pregnancy.
Pregnancy complaints: these tips will help
It is true that pregnancy problems are completely normal. But that does not mean that expectant mothers have to endure them until the end of their pregnancy. The right tips will help prevent or effectively relieve symptoms.
Without a doubt, nausea is one of the most common and most uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms. It suddenly becomes noticeable between the fifth and eighth week of pregnancy. Typically, the stomach rebels in the morning, right after getting up. However, nausea can occur at any other time of the day. It is usually accompanied by a disgust for certain foods and a changed sense of smell. The reason for this is due to an increased level of the pregnancy hormone HCG. Usually, however, the symptoms subside in the second trimester.
Tips against nausea:
- Eat several small meals throughout the day so that the stomach is never empty and make sure you eat low-fat, easily digestible food.
- Do you suffer from sickness especially in the morning? Then it can help to have a bite to eat right after you wake up. Place small snacks on the dessert, such as rusks, pretzel sticks or crackers.
- Ginger has a calming effect on the stomach and intestines and can relieve the symptoms in the form of tea and capsules or freshly grated.
Important : Talk to your doctor before taking any anti-nausea medication. If you vomit frequently, you should definitely consult a gynecologist.
Although the nausea subsides in the second month of pregnancy, many expectant mothers now develop heartburn. The rising progesterone level loosens the so-called gastric gatekeeper. The loosened sphincter muscle between the stomach and duodenum can no longer hold back stomach acid.
- Eliminate foods and drinks from your menu that stimulate acid production in the stomach: acidic, fatty and spicy foods as well as large amounts of coffee and black tea.
- Milk and nuts can neutralize stomach acid.
- Eat several small meals a day. This means that less stomach acid is produced.
- Avoid mint tea. It can help with many ailments – but with heartburn it can even worsen the symptoms. Because the relaxing effect of peppermint tea can also have an effect on the gastric sphincter.
As if nausea and heartburn weren’t enough, the physical and hormonal changes during pregnancy also affect bowel function. As with heartburn, the hormone progesterone is the culprit in constipation. It slows down bowel movements and causes stool to lose more water. This not only makes bowel movements less frequent, but also drier – and that can be painful.
Tips against constipation:
- If you are constipated, drink a glass of mineral water on an empty stomach in the morning or eat a few prunes soaked overnight.
- Milk, fruit juices and special teas bring movement to the intestines.
- Bran or flaxseed also aid digestion when mixed in small amounts with yogurt or muesli. It is important that you drink enough: a glass of mineral water per tablespoon of bran.
- Get as much exercise as you can to get the digestive tract going.
Constipation can quickly cause discomfort with the hemorrhoids. This is because stronger pressing during bowel movements increases the pressure on the blood vessels in the rectum. Because there is more blood in the pelvic area during pregnancy, the pressure in the veins also increases. The nodular thickening at the anus then often causes pain, itching and easy bleeding.
Tips against hemorrhoidal diseases:
- Make sure your stool is soft. Drink enough water and herbal tea and focus on foods rich in fiber, such as whole grain products, fruits and vegetables.
- Cooling compresses and hip baths with oak bark extract or chamomile have a pain-relieving and calming effect.
- Special care creams can provide relief from itching and pain.
If these remedies do not work, the doctor or midwife will prescribe ointments or suppositories that you can use during pregnancy.
In addition to the gastrointestinal tract, pregnancy-related changes also affect the vessels and connective tissue. Almost every pregnant woman knows it: suddenly the shoes no longer fit properly and the rings on the fingers cause pain. In the second and third trimesters, water retention increases in the legs, hands, feet and ankles, as fluid enters the connective tissue from the vessels. The so-called stasis edema is particularly evident in the evening.
Tips against water retention:
- Water helps against water retention – the more you drink, the more fluid is flushed out of the body.
- Exercise: Raise your legs, circle your feet and hands, and pull your toes towards the tip of your nose.
- Exercise and gymnastics can effectively reduce water retention during pregnancy.
If the edema does not go away overnight, please consult your general practitioner or gynecologist – especially if the swellings also appear on the lower legs and face combined with visual disturbances, nausea or severe headaches.
Even if they don’t cause pain, varicose veins are one of the most annoying symptoms during pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones and the inevitable weight gain increase the pressure on the vessels and the blood vessels relax. The good news: After the delivery, at the latest after the puerperium, the varicose veins usually recede.
Tips against varicose veins:
- If possible, put your legs up several times a day.
- Avoid standing and sitting for long periods of time. If that is not possible, move your legs in between.
- Alternating showers and support stockings promote blood circulation.
While the rapidly growing uterus and a loosened pelvic floor trigger back pain in the first trimester of pregnancy, the causes change in the second and third trimesters. Adjusted posture and pressure on the pelvis from the child’s weight and head often lead to poor posture.
Yoga can relieve back pain during pregnancy
Tips against back pain:
- Strengthen the muscles: Yoga, light weight training and pregnancy exercises are best for training the back and pelvic floor.
- Consciously straighten yourself up again and again and try to keep your back straight.
- Lying on the side when sleeping relieves the back at night.
- Make sure you have comfortable shoes.
In many cases, pregnancy symptoms can be alleviated by making small changes in everyday life – but if the level of suffering is high, the gynecologist can suggest medical treatment methods.