Common First Trimester Symptoms


Nausea

This can occur at any time of day and may come in the form of aversion to certain foods.

It generally improves by the 13th or 14th week of pregnancy, but can continue into the 2nd trimester.

  • munch a few crackers before getting up in the morning
  • eat several small meals a day so that your stomach is never empty
  • drink plenty of liquids
  • try wearing a motion sickness band
  • try drinking ginger soda, tea or taking ginger capsules

Heartburn

Heartburn may be an effect of sluggish digestion or the expansion of the uterus.

  • eat several small meals a day instead of three large ones
  • avoid triggers (fried foods, chocolate, peppermint, garlic, onion)
  • drink plenty of fluids
  • stay up for 2-3 hours after your evening meal.

Antacids (Tums, Mylanta, Maalox) and medications such as Zantac or Tagamet are fine to take for relief.


Constipation

Constipation affects at least half of all pregnant women and is caused by an increase in progesterone, which slows the digestive process.

  • Try to eat on a regular schedule
  • drink plenty of fluids
  • get some exercise daily
  • eat high-fiber fruits, vegetables, and grains
  • try fiber supplements (Metamucil, Citrucel) or a mild laxative (such as milk of magnesia

Dizziness

Pregnancy causes dilation of blood vessels, resulting in lower blood pressure.

Dizziness may also be caused by low blood sugar or anemia.

We will do lab work to rule these conditions out.

  • get up slowly from lying or sitting down
  • walk at a slower pace
  • avoid prolonged standing
  • guard against over-heating (hot tubs, saunas)
  • stay physically active
  • drink plenty of fluids
  • eat iron-rich foods (beans, red meat, green leafy vegetables, dried fruits)

Fatigue

Fatigue is caused by demands on the circulatory system and increased progesterone, which makes you sleepy.

  • take naps during the day or go to sleep earlier
  • avoid taking on extra responsibilities
  • ask for support when you need it
  • exercise regularly
  • eat foods rich in iron and protein
  • avoid excess caffeine

Vaginal discharge and vaginal infections

An increase in vaginal discharge is common in pregnancy due to increase in the turnover of vaginal lining cells. It will likely be present throughout the pregnancy.

Let someone know if discharge becomes odorous, irritating, itchy, discolored, or if you are having pain with urination.


Headaches

Headaches are one of the most common discomforts experienced during pregnancy.

During the first trimester ,your body experiences a surge of hormones and an increase in blood volume.

Stress, low blood sugar, lack of sleep, dehydration, caffeine withdraw can also be the cause.

  • apply cold compress to base of neck
  • maintain your blood sugar eating smaller more frequent meals
  • get plenty of sleep
  • rest in a dark room
  • have small amount of caffeine
  • take acetaminophen, avoiding Ibuprofen, unless instructed by your provider