Managing Discomforts

According to WebMD, the following solutions can help relieve some of the most common discomforts experienced during pregnancy.

Compiled By Jenni Frankenberg Veal

Nausea

Nausea is usually the result of hormonal changes and occurs frequently in early pregnancy. If nausea occurs in the morning, a woman can eat dry foods like cereal or crackers before getting out of bed. During the day, she can eat small meals or snacks every two to three hours and sip on fluids throughout the day.

Fatigue

A growing baby requires extra energy, so a pregnant woman should work to maintain a regular schedule that balances activity with lots of rest. If she thinks she is anemic, she should ask her doctor to test her blood. She can also exercise daily to increase her energy level.

Dizziness

The pregnancy hormone progesterone dilates blood vessels, increasing a woman’s blood flow to her uterus and decreasing the blood flow to her brain, resulting in dizziness. If standing for a long period of time, a woman can continue to move to help alleviate dizziness. She can also move slowly when standing from a sitting position and avoid dehydration and overheating.

Breast Changes

A pregnant woman’s breasts will increase in size as her milk glands enlarge and her fat tissue increases. To help with resulting discomforts, she should increase her bra size and make sure each bra provides firm support. She can also wear a bra at night.

Stretch Marks

Stretch marks are a type of scar tissue that forms when skin loses its normal elasticity. While they won’t disappear, stretch marks will fade after a woman’s delivery. To help reduce stretch marks, a woman should include nutrients necessary for healthy skin (like vitamin C and vitamin E) in her diet. She can also apply lotion to her skin to keep it soft and exercise daily.

Constipation and Hemorrhoids

Constipation and hemorrhoids may be the result of added pressure from a woman’s uterus on her rectum. To avoid constipation, a woman can add more fiber to her diet, drink at least six to eight glasses of water each day and exercise daily. To relieve discomfort from hemorrhoids, a woman should avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time. She can also apply cold compresses to the area or take warm baths for relief.

Leg Cramps

Pressure from a growing uterus can cause a woman to have sharp pains down her legs. A woman with leg cramps should make sure she is getting enough calcium. Comfortable low-heeled shoes and support hose may help alleviate pain. She can also elevate her legs or apply heat to cramped muscles.

For more information on how to manage discomforts, go to: www.whattoexpect. com/pregnancy/symptoms-and-solutions/ landing.aspx.

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