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Common Discomforts


One of our goals to help you understand the normal changes and common discomforts that may occur during pregnancy. It is also our goal to provide you with some suggestions that may help to ease some of these normal discomforts if you are experiencing them.

1 . Nausea – See Nausea and Vomiting handout.

2 . Heartburn/Indigestion – Stay away from greasy/spicy, fatty or fried foods.Also avoid gas producing foods such as raw cabbage or onions, undercooked dried beans, etc. Eat 5-6 smaller, nourishing meals instead of 3 large meals each day. Drink liquid between meals, rather than with meals. Limit your liquid with meals to 4 oz or less. Milk is strongly recommended, a few sips of milk or buttermilk often helps to relieve heartburn. Do not lie down for 1 – 2 hours after eating.

  • ∙ For heartburn not relieved by the above measures you may use one of the following medications. Overuse or abuse of these medications should be avoided, however, because large amounts could interfere with vitamin & nutrient absorption. 1. Maalox, Mylanta, Zantac, Pepcid, or Riopan – one tablespoon if needed after meals and at bedtime no more than 2 to 3 times a day. 2. Tums- sodium free 1 or 2 tablets, 2-3 times a day (please avoid Tums if you have any history of problems with premature labor).
  • ∙ Dissolve 1/2 tsp cream of tartar and 1/2 tsp baking soda in water to relieve painful symptoms of heartburn. (Cream of tartar has countless health benefits. Caution in people Please remember too much of a good thing can often become a bad thing. As with any nutritional supplement, potassium must be taken in moderation.3. Headaches – are very common in early pregnancy and are often related to stress, tiredness, and hunger. They can often be relieved by eating small amounts of high carbohydrate (bread or cereal), high protein snacks and lying down and resting. Rest/relax in a dark, quiet environment with a damp washcloth on your forehead. Hot shower or heat pack to the back of your neck. May also try ice pack if heat not helpful. May take tylenol/acetaminophen as directed on package. Peppermint essential oil 1 drop mixed with a few drops of carrier oil (ex. almond oil) and massage onto temples. Magnesium is the relaxation mineral (see the Midwifery suggestion sheet for recommended dosages and benefits).

∙ If you have severe headaches with eye problems, swelling in your face, or severe vomiting, please call the office. Fevers can also cause headaches. All fevers above 100.4 degrees should be treated with tylenol/acetaminophen. Please let your physician or midwife know if you continue to run a fever over 101 degrees.

4. Fatigue – Is very common in early and late pregnancy. Moderate exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week can relieve tension, boost your circulation, increases your metabolism and helps your body release endorphins. Exercise improves mood and reduces fatigue (avoid exercise close to bedtime as it makes it more difficult to sleep).

Lie down at least once per day. If persistent inform your midwife as this can be a sign of anemia, which is common in pregnancy.

5. Dizziness – Change your position slowly, especially after lying down. Eat regular meals/drink plenty of fluids, eat a protein snack (ex.cheese/peanuts) at first signs of dizziness or shakiness. Do not stay in the sun. Report any persistent dizziness to your midwife.

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