Dealing With Common Pregnancy Symptoms

Here are suggestions on how to cope with common symptoms that can occur during pregnancy.

Morning sickness
(Suggestions also cover nausea and vomiting that can happen at any time of day.)

  • Don't use alcohol or tobacco.
  • Eat plain crackers before getting out of bed and several small meals throughout the day.
  • Don't go without food for long periods of time.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, especially if you've been vomiting.
  • Stay away from spicy, fried, greasy, or strong-smelling foods.
  • Get up slowly after sitting or lying down.
  • Sniff lemon wedges to mask odors.
  • Turn on the kitchen exhaust fan when preparing meals.
  • Try taking vitamin B6 (25 to 50 milligrams) 3 times a day.
  • Don't take any medicines not recommended by your doctor or midwife.

Feeling tired

  • Take naps and go to bed early.
  • Drink less fluid after 8 p.m. to avoid getting up during the night.
  • Restore energy with mild exercise.
  • Relax in a warm shower or bath.
  • Stay away from caffeine and sugar.
  • Ask for help with household chores.
  • Go outdoors for fresh air and daylight every day.

Nosebleeds and nasal congestion

  • Place a cold cloth on the bridge of your nose and lie down.
  • Don't use decongestant sprays.
  • Use a cool mist vaporizer if your house is dry.
  • Dab petroleum jelly in your nostrils.

Feeling dizzy or lightheaded

  • Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time.
  • Stand up slowly.
  • Eat often and drink plenty of fluids.

Breast tenderness

  • Wear a supportive bra with wide shoulder straps. The cup should cover your entire breast.
  • Wear a bra at night.
  • Roll your shoulders to ease sore muscles.

Increased vaginal discharge
(Whitish or clear and odorless)

  • Wash as usual.
  • Don't use tampons and don't douche.
  • Keep underwear clean and dry.

From the "Birth Day News" series.

Clinical review by Jane Dimer, MD
Kaiser Permanente
Reviewed 03/01/2014