fbpx

12 Tips To Manage Pregnancy Symptoms / Blues

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on telegram
Share on whatsapp

Major Changes in your Body

You might be overwhelmed by the number of vast changes that are going to happen to your body, like the fact that your organs are gonna shift up as your womb gets bigger is hard to imagine! 

Child bearing is a magical process, even though that might mean you need to go through symptoms like morning sickness (we know, it sucks), or just a pesky bladder (you wonder why you have to go to the toilet so many times), or water retention that is so bad, your feet is so swollen, you can now fit into your husband’s shoe.

Hormonal Change

During your pregnancy, your body will start to accommodate by adjusting your hormones to provide nutrients and a conducive environment to grow your baby. During the process, you will start to experience sensory changes, physical changes, circulatory system changes, and respiratory and metabolic changes. But you don’t have to worry too much, as the changes is progressive and your body will adapt to it if you take good care of yourself.

Double in your Blood Volume

Your body will start producing more blood to provide enough blood to flow to your uterus for your baby’s growth, which will cause you to have blood and iron deficiency.

Body demanding for more Qi & Blood Flow

As your body starts to provide more for your baby, you will start to feel exhausted just by going through your normal day at work. This is also why you will need to rest as much as possible for your body to start replenishing Qi and Blood flow.

Body Organ begin to Grow

This is due to the increase in blood volume and blood flow which causes your kidney to increase in size and hence pressing on your bladder which gives you the urge to visit the washroom more often. Also due to the increase of the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) but this urge will reduce in the second trimester.

Strong food Craving and Aversion

This is due to the increase in blood volume and blood flow which causes your kidney to increase in size and hence pressing on your bladder which gives you the urge to visit the washroom more often. Also due to the increase of the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) but this urge will reduce in the second trimester.

Physical Care Plan

As you might have already understood that there are different changes happening during your First Trimester and Pregnancy, you would love to be extra careful so that you don’t hurt your baby. This is definitely welcoming, as your mother’s instinct starts to kick in and you will do what it takes to protect your baby.

Nonetheless, it’s also important to ensure you strengthen your body and enhance your immune system. 

Understanding that your body is going through a lot of changes to nurture your baby, you will need to rest more often when you have the opportunity. Even though you might not experience too many pregnancy symptoms in the early weeks, you might start to notice the effect of hormonal changes from Week 10 onwards.

Stomach Cramps

You might experience a slight tugging sensation at your abdomen area, and also stomach cramps. Do not be too alarmed by this, as this shows your uterus is beginning to stretch and is growing at an exponential rate.

You can consider adjusting your sitting or laying down position to ease the cramp, this also allows your body to stretch and be more adaptive to your growing uterus. You can also consider doing some low impact exercises to allow your body to be more agile and improve your Qi & Blood Circulation for better blood flow to your uterus. 

Suggestion

    • Adjusting your sitting or laying down position to ease the cramp
    • Do upwards stretching to improve muscle agility
    • Do low impact exercise to allow your muscle stretch and strengthens

*Stop if sharp and severe pain occurs, and consult your gynae.

Lower Back Pain

If you are experiencing lower back pain during your first trimester, it’s mainly due to the hormone increase and stress. If you are not careful, you might experience lower back pain due to impact injury, and you might need to consult your doctor or TCM Physician on how to manage this injury.

As your body loosen during pregnancy due to the hormones increase, you should start observing your seating and standing posture, as these might be the contributing factor on your lower back pain. You should avoid any potential straining or injury-causing activity such as standing for a long period, lifting heavy items and bending your waist to pick things up.

You can also consider some external support such as a supportive belt and shoes, and also look at additional pillows to support you when you sleep at night. A warm bath or beanbag can be helpful in easing the back aches. Plenty of rest is also recommended to allow your body to adapt to the changes.

Suggestion

    • Maintain good posture when seated or standing
    • Avoid standing for too long
    • Avoid lifting heavy items
    • Refrain from bending your waist to pick things up from the floor
    • Wear shoes that provide support, and avoid heels
    • Sleep on your side or on bed with back support
    • Supportive wear or belt
    • Get a warm bath
    • Apply warm bean bag at lower back
    • Get plenty of rest

Heartburn

You might feel the burning pain sensation in the center of your chest and this is usually due to the stomach acid reflux due to the hormonal change (estrogen) that relaxes your muscle to accommodate for your baby’s growth.

You can consider adjusting your dietary habits by eating smaller meals and more frequently. Also avoid laying down after a meal and avoid greasy, spicy and acidic foods.

Suggestion

    • Eat more frequent smaller meals
    • Avoid laying down after a meal
    • Avoid eating greasy, spicy and acidic food

Restless Leg Syndrome

You might have the uncontrollable urge to move your legs due to an uncomfortable sensation, and it can be irritating during the day and affects your sleep at night.

This is likely due to folic acid and iron deficiency, and hormonal changes (estrogen). So by consuming food that is rich in iron and folate can help improve this condition. You can also pick up some low impact exercise to relieve your restless leg syndrome but do remember to do it progressively.

If this concerns you, you might want to consider consulting a TCM Physician to find out if there is any treatment that might help you.

You can consider adjusting your dietary habits by eating smaller meals and more frequently. Also avoid laying down after a meal and avoid greasy, spicy and acidic foods.

Suggestion

    • Consume enough iron and folate
    • Start exercising and stretching

Vivid Dreams

It’s normal that you are aware that you are dreaming more than usual, as it’s common for pregnant mothers to remember their dreams due to the hormone changes increasing your REM sleep.

This is also due to your constant worrying of the well-being of your baby, frequent trips to the washroom and emotion fluctuation.

Suggestion

    • Ensure you have a conducive sleeping environment (Dark and quiet room with a comfortable temperature)
    • Remove electronic device from the room
    • Avoid taking long naps in the day
    • Doing something relaxing before going to bed, listening to soothing music, herbal foot bath or even meditation.

Pesky Bladder

It is very common for you to constantly have the urge to urinate due to the hormonal changes and the pressure on your bladder. This is due to the increase in blood volume and blood flow which causes your kidney to increase in size and hence pressing on your bladder which gives you the urge to visit the washroom more often. You are also advised to drink more water to keep yourself hydrated, adding on to the pesky bladder effect.

You can also avoid drinking water before you go to bed to avoid going to the washroom too often at night. You can also reduce drinks or food with diuretic effects such as caffeine and parsley. 

However, your body will need a lot of water, so you are encouraged to drink 8 to 12 cups of water every day to keep yourself hydrated and drinking sufficient water can help in digestion, overheating, constipation and fight off fatigue caused by dehydration.

Suggestion

    • Avoid drinking water an hour before you go to bed
    • Avoid caffeine drinks like coffee and tea
    • Learning forward when you urinate to help empty your bladder

Heightened Sense of Smell

Another problem caused by pregnancy hormones is the heightened sense of smell that might cause you issues if you are among the majority two-third of women experiencing some degree of morning sickness. 

Suggestion

    • Keep your environment ventilated
    • Avoid food that you can’t stand to smell
    • Saline wash or spray your nasal passages
    • Sniff on stuff that makes you feel better (medicated oil, lemon or anything)
    • Clean it up! Wash your clothes or any fibers to remove any odor.

Morning Sickness

One of the most feared symptoms of pregnancy, it’s the combination of nausea and vomiting. Though it’s hard to determine the culprit, morning sickness may be caused by pregnancy hormones, hCG and estrogen, and also low blood sugar. You might consider taking your time when you are getting up in the morning to avoid sudden movements which might cause you to feel nausea.

You are recommended to frequently snack on crackers and dry cereals to maintain your blood sugar level throughout the day. You can also try out ginger tea or add ginger juice to sugar cane to help ease your morning sickness.

You can take more Vitamin B6 and B12 to help ease your nausea and improve your energy level. Food such as chicken, avocado and bananas is rich in these vitamins and also in other important minerals.

Suggestion

    • Have a bland diet – avoid heavy seasoning or strong flavored food
    • Eat frequent small meals
    • Avoid stimulating food
    • Consume high-protein snacks such as nuts or soya bean curd
    • Avoid sensory stimulation.
    • Take more Vitamin B6
    • Ginger Tea or Sugar Cane with Ginger Juice

Weight Gain

During pregnancy you will experience weight gain as your body is going to produce more blood to provide nutrients and nourishment for your baby.

Most of the weight gain occurs during Second and Third Trimester but you might start to feel some stomach cramps as your uterus grows and stretches to accommodate for your baby’s growth. 

Recommendation

    • Exercise to improve Qi and Blood circulation and maintain your weight gain
    • Don’t over eat, you will only require to have weight gain between 11-14kg during your pregnancy

Feeling Bloated

You might also experience bloatedness due to your body being affected by progesterone which will cause your body to build up more gas. This isn’t an alarming issue but you might feel uncomfortable with the gas being built up.

So what you can do is to drink plenty of fluid to help with your bowel movement to prevent irritable bowel syndrome.

Consider including low-FODMAP food in your diet such as oranges, strawberries, spinach, carrot, oats and brown rice to ease the buildup of gas. Some other source of calcium you can consider is oats, yogurt and calcium-fortified nuts.

Other than adjusting your diet, you should plan a daily routine walk or exercise for at least 30 minutes to increase bowel movement and speed up digestion. Gently massage in circular motion at your abdomen area can help release the gas and improve the bloated feeling.

Recommendation

    • Take probiotics as part of your diet
    • Take a walk
    • Lightly massage your abdomen

Mood Swing

In Singapore’s context, the most common cause of mood swings is sleep deprivation, fatigue, stress and change in hormone levels. Handling so many changes can be stressful and might take a toll on mothers.

So it’s important for mothers to make sure you get enough rest so that you won’t feel too tired with all that is happening around you. You can consider exercising to improve your Qi and energy for a better overall well-being.

Of course, if you are feeling stressed or suffering from anxiety, you can always talk to your partner, family or even a therapist about your concern.

Suggestions

    • Get plenty of rest
    • Try exercising to reduce stress and sleep better
    • Talk to your partner, family or friends to get things off your chest
    • Seek professional advice if condition worsen

Other topics

Newsletter

Madam Partum Newsletter

Ask Madam Partum provides guideline for mommies on topics that is commonly asked. Topics from Pre-Partum Care to Post-Partum Recuperation.

Subscribe now and receive the latest notification

Need help?