Most of us know that a certain amount of morning sickness comes with the territory during pregnancy. After all, roughly three fourths of pregnancies involve morning sickness during the first trimester. So, it’s nothing to worry about, right?
In most cases, morning sickness is perfectly normal. In fact, most health care professionals agree that it’s a good sign that your pregnancy is healthy and progressing as it should. If, however, you’re getting so sick that you aren’t able to get proper nutrition or hold down fluids, it can be a problem.
Roughly 6% of pregnancies involve severe morning sickness, with an even smaller amount having hyperemesis gravidarum. Hyperemesis gravidarum is a particularly harmful form of morning sickness which has been linked to low blood sugar and gestational diabetes.
If you have particularly severe morning sickness symptoms, let your doctor or health care provider know. If you’re not sure where to draw the line between normal and severe, use these guidelines:
- If you are not gaining weight, and especially if you lose any weight, make sure your doctor knows.
- If you are unable to keep fluids down for more than a day, let your doctor know.
- If you vomit blood, call your doctor immediately.
- If you vomit something that appears like coffee grounds, call your doctor immediately.
- If you are vomiting more than three times daily, contact your doctor.
- If you’re not able to keep any food down longer than a day, call your doctor.
- If you’ve tried all of the suggested remedies (ginger, crackers, etc.), and nothing is reducing the nausea, contact your doctor.
- If you still have morning sickness after sixteen or seventeen weeks, call your doctor. In most cases, this is nothing serious, but your doctor should know.
The most important thing to keep in mind when you’re going through morning sickness is that it won’t last long. In most cases, morning sickness goes away on its own around the third or fourth month of your pregnancy. As your body continues to adjust to the new life growing inside of you, you’ll move past those symptoms and into a whole new set (swollen feet, anyone?).