The low-down on morning sickness and why you’re not the only one that hates it

July 01, 2014 12:00 AM by

It sometimes hits you before you even know you're pregnant – morning sickness. And it's exactly what everyone told you it is. That awful, not being able to eat, constantly-running-to-the-bathroom-to-puke feeling.

You may be wondering, "when does morning sickness start?" Well, it's often one of the early pregnancy symptoms before a missed period, and often appears during the sixth week (or third week after conception).

Despite it's name, morning sickness can actually strike at any time of the day. Some do feel sick in the mornings, but it can also hit you in the afternoon. Sometimes, the unfortunate ones feel nauseous all day.

It's quite possibly one of the most upsetting symptoms you'll endure during your nine month journey to motherhood.

What causes morning sickness?
Morning sickness is caused by a combination of hormones, an increase in your stress levels and other changes that your body is undergoing as your fetus begins to grow. According to What To Expect, it may be cause by elevated levels of the pregnancy hormones hCG and estrogen mercilessly moving throughout your body to prepare for the major work its about to complete. It can also be from the muscles in your digestive tract relaxing as your progesterone levels rise as well as the rapid stretching of your uterine muscles.

What can I do about it?
There's not really much you can do about it except wait it out. It typically passes at the end of your first trimester but can sometimes stick around until week 16.

Make sure you're taking your prenatal vitamins so your body is getting that extra boost of the good stuff to help your baby grow healthy. There is also a medication that has been deemed safe by the Food and Drug Administration called diclegis. Of course, this is something you'll want to discuss with your doctor in further detail and to decide if this prescription is right for you.

Morning sickness won't hurt you or the baby, and the fetus can't even tell that your vomiting. However, if you're experiencing excessive vomiting and cannot keep your food down, the American Pregnancy Association suggests seeing a doctor as you may have hyperemesis gravidarum.

While regular morning sickness doesn't present a threat to you or the baby, hyperemesis gravidarum does if it goes untreated because of a possible lack of nutrients in your body and an electrolyte imbalance.

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