Thalidomide – 50 Years Later

Posted on Jan 26, 2012 | Morning Sickness News, Morning Sickness Remedies Category | | Print This Article


Creative Commons License photo credit: Brandon Giesbrecht

It was 1951 when the morning sickness drug, thalidomide, was removed from the marketplace. The drug was initially hailed as a revolutionary way to treat morning sickness; unfortunately, it proved to be catastrophic for many women and their babies. Literally thousands of babies worldwide were afflicted with a number of types of abnormalities, including things like the absence of one or more limbs.

Long-term repercussions

Today the legacy of thalidomide remains. The episode caused governmental regulatory agencies to stand up and take notice, and fine new ways to make sure that the drugs that make it to market just don’t have these kinds of dangers.

In some ways, this tragedy helped to improve the medical field, and make it safer. (Althoguh there are those that would suggest that the increased regulatory oversight means that some effective drugs that should be brought to market aren’t, but that’s really a discussion for another place.)

Natural solutions

Fortunately, there are ways to address morning sickness that don’t require potentially-dangerous drugs. In the 50 years since thalidomide rocked the world, there has been more and more discovery (or in many cases simple rediscover) of effective morning sickness remedies.

Some of the kinds of morning sickness remedies that don’t pose the kinds of danger that drugs can pose include things like:

  • Ginger. There are many ways a pregnant woman can get ginger, from ginger tea to ginger capsules to ginger ale and more.
  • Acupressure bands. Sea Bands and other morning sickness bands can use the power of pressure points in the body to reduce pregnancy-related nausea.
  • Dietary management. Avoiding greasy or spicy foods or foods with strong smells can help to limit morning sickness, in many cases.
  • Hydration. Dehydration is a surprisingly common contributor to morning sickness.
  • Mint. For many women, peppermint may help to reduce morning sickness.

There are plenty of other natural remedies for morning sickness. Not all work for all women, of course. But there are so many, in fact, that you wonder why anyone ever used thalidomide to begin with.

What are some of your favorite remedies?


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