Remedies for morning sickness

Pregnancy | | HiPP Organic


If you’re feeling a bit ropey right now, you’re not alone. The majority of people experience some sickness during pregnancy, and particularly in the first trimester. For some, it lasts a little longer – and for the unlucky few, sickness can persist throughout pregnancy.

Nausea is usually attributed – like everything else – to hormones, and is more common in women who are prone to migraines, have a family history of sickness during pregnancy, or who suffer with motion sickness.

While it is commonly known as morning sickness, nausea can strike at any time, playing havoc with your daily routines. So, what can you do to ease nausea and get through the day? We asked our HiPP family for their top tips.

Little and often

“Constant snacking – do NOT stop snacking,” advises Emily, who found – like many – that sickness was worst on an empty stomach.

Emma agrees: ‘During my pregnancy, I tried to avoid getting to the point where I felt hungry. I’d keep oat biscuits or dry crackers by the bed and on hand at all times so that I could graze constantly.’

‘I kept a tub of crackers in my car,’ says Laura, who also found she needed to eat small amounts regularly to keep the nausea at bay, and preferred plain foods in the early stages of her pregnancy. The resounding message: be prepared. Keep nibbles in your bag, at your desk and in the house in case nausea strikes.

If you’d rather not snack all day, but you can’t get from breakfast to lunch without feeling dreadful, try eating more frequent meals. Changing your usual breakfast, lunch and dinner routine into four or five lighter, healthy meals may help you avoid nausea, while ensuring you get the nutrients you need.

Ginger and mouthwash

In terms of what to eat to help with morning sickness, there is some evidence to suggest that ginger can ease nausea, and many of our mums confirmed that ginger biscuits and even ginger ale helped them to get through the worst of it. While it is possible to buy ginger supplements, it is best to talk to your pharmacist before taking them during pregnancy.

“Ginger nut biscuits and peppermint tea,” says HiPP mum Leah, “and mouthwash in my handbag in case I was sick in the office!”

Ensuring your body has a good range the right balance of vitamins and minerals by eating a healthy, balanced diet will also help, as will making sure you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. (It’s worth it even if it means extra trips to the loo!) If you’re finding it difficult to prepare food because the smell is triggering your nausea, stick to cold meals or ask for help.

Rest up

Alongside the sickness, many find themselves totally wiped out by pregnancy – and often this exhaustion contributes to the nausea. If this is happening to you, listen to your body and give yourself a break.

“I really struggled with morning sickness,” says Faye. “I ended up with pharyngitis because my throat was so inflamed from being sick and reflux. In my case, the pandemic worked in my favour, as I was furloughed relatively early on in my pregnancy and so had a kind of enforced rest period. I don’t know how I would have managed to work when I felt so poorly.”

“It is rubbish,” agrees Gen. “I ended up being prescribed an iron supplement for the fatigue, and I took it with orange juice to aid absorption.”

Sometimes factoring a nap into your day may be enough to help you feel better. If you’re fortunate enough to have a flexible work schedule and work remotely, or for a company with the necessary facilities, talk to your employer about how they can support you during this tricky time. It’s in their interests, too.

Hyperemesis gravidarum

If your sickness is so severe that you are losing weight, unable to work, and/or require hospital treatment, you may be suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum. This is a serious condition affecting around 1 - 3% of all pregnancies, sometimes for the first 16 – 18 weeks and sometimes for the duration of the pregnancy.

This condition requires medical support, so don’t suffer in silence if your nausea and vomiting is severe and does not improve after trying the above lifestyle changes. – t Talk to your healthcare professional. They will help you work out a treatment plan that ensures you don’t end up dehydrated and malnourished, a risk for both you and your baby.

Ask for help

While it’s true that people have been getting pregnant for thousands of years (the old ‘it’s the most natural thing in the world’ argument), it’s also true that pregnancies have been uncomfortable throughout that time. It’s ok to put your hand up and say ‘I’m struggling; I need help’.

Whether you talk to your healthcare professional, your family or your friends, make sure you’re talking to someone. Sometimes you just need to vent, or a kind word from a colleague to help lift your spirits when you’re feeling low. Asking for support now is also good practice for when the baby comes and you need that village around you. And in your darkest moments, try to hold on to the light at the end of the tunnel – pregnancy doesn’t last forever, and at the end of it you get your baby.