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Common Pregnancy Discomforts and How to Get Relief

You have been pregnant for a few months now and are beginning to feel the effects. Well what did you expect? You are making a whole other human being and that requires a lot of building material. Building blocks that the little darling can get what it needs buy literally sucking out of your very bones and tissues! Here are a few of the common discomforts you can expect to have during your pregnancy and a few solutions to help you relieve them.

Sleepiness and low energy

Almost immediately, this symptom will kick in. You will find that on some days you can barley keep your eyes open, and even when you can stay awake you find that you are sluggish and have very little energy. Your body is able to do many wonderful things, but building another person and keeping you alert is a lot to ask. Here are a couple of ways to make sure that your body (and that of your unborn) obtains what it needs:

  • Eat high energy foods and eat them often- A snack, such as a mixture of dried cherries, dried cranberries, sesame sticks and pecans will give you a sustained energy burst. The dried fruit raises your blood sugar level, while the protein in the pecans helps sustain it.
  • Snack regularly during the day- Try not to go too long between eating. Small snacks during the day are better than gorging your self at meal times.
  • Prenatal vitamins- Obtain some good prenatal vitamins, prescription if possible. Yes, they sell over the counter prenatal vitamins that claim to be just as good, but if you have the option, get a prescription from your doctor and don’t forget to use them everyday!
  • Get extra sleep- Plan a nap time (yup, it’s like being back in kindergarten) and try to stick to it. If you have the option, go to bed earlier and rise later. Getting enough rest is a must for an expectant mother.

Lower Back Pain

This is a common discomfort among pregnant women. The location of the baby within the woman’s pelvis puts a strain on the lower back because the weight pulls the back muscles forward. Try these remedies for relief:

  • Belly strap- This is a simple support that consists of a wide strap that goes around the lower abdomen and lifts the baby thus relieving the stress on the spine.
  • Supportive clothing- There are specially designed clothes that will lift the baby.
  • Full Spine Support Brace- In severe cases of back discomfort this might be the only supportive device that will supply relief. Check with your doctor before using any device.
  • Assume the position- In fact; assume any position that allows the baby to hang down naturally. You could kneel on all fours or place yourself so that your head and arms are on a chair with your knees on the floor, back flat and belly hanging down.

Nausea and Vomiting

These common discomforts are the result of hormonal changes that are occurring in a woman’s body during pregnancy. While they occur most frequently during the first trimester, they can take place anytime during the entire term. Anything can trigger the reactions: smells, tastes, sight, even sounds can all bring on a response. Try these remedies:

  • Ginger- This is a natural, long used remedy to combat nausea. You can obtain it as a crystallized candy or in pill form (I suggest the candy, you deserve it)
  • Peppermint- Another natural remedy. You can make peppermint tea, take it as a candy or even chew natural peppermint leaves.
  • Anti nausea meds- Either over the counter or prescription, but be careful, some of these medications can be harmful to developing babies always check with your doctor before taking any medications.

Swollen Ankles

The pressure of the developing baby on femoral veins can cause swollen ankles. While not medically dangerous or particularly painful, they can be discomforting. Try this for relief:

  • Elevate feet- Try to sleep with your feet elevated. Elevate your bed (if you are lucky enough to have one that does this) or place pillows beneath your feet.
  • Hands and knees- back to all fours to help circulation.
  • Foot massage- Get someone (hubby, friend, or masseuse) to give you a daily foot and ankle massage. Sure it’s a little pampering, but hey you deserve it! After all you are making a kid for goodness sake!

These are some of the more common distresses associated with pregnancy, they range from the mildly uncomfortable to acutely discomforting. Remember to see your doctor regularly and let her know how you are feeling. Don’t you assume that a discomfort is minor! Let the doctor tell you that. Try to relax, remember in 9 months or so it will all be over. Then the real discomfort begins!!

Related Articles:
Common Pregnancy Discomforts and How to Get Relief
Eating Disorders & The Pregnant Mom
Pregnancy and Eating Disorders

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