Women Reluctant to Talk to Doctors about Morning Sickness

Posted on Mar 14, 2012 | Morning Sickness News Category | | Print This Article

Creative Commons License photo credit: edenpictures

As one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy, morning sickness is just something that some women seem to take in stride. You assume that, because most other women have had to deal with morning sickness, that you should just deal with it on your own.

According to one recent morning sickness survey, only about 40% of women who experience morning sickness report it to a health care professional. There are a variety of reasons for this, and it’s easy to understand why morning sickness might be underreported.

Some of the reasons we don’t talk to our health care professionals about morning sickness include:

  • Severity. You may not feel like your morning sickness is severe enough to warrant medical attention. About 25% of pregnant women have morning sickness that includes nausea alone, without any vomiting, and many of us simply decide to “tough it out.”
  • Lack of knowledge. You might simply believe that there’s nothing that your health care provider can do for you. Why mention your morning sickness if there’s really no treatment? This is false, of course; there are many treatments for morning sickness, from herbal remedies to acupressure, many of which your health care provider may be willing to recommend.
  • Unaware of the dangers. Some women don’t realize that truly severe morning sickness – where they can’t seem to keep anything down – can present a real danger both to their own health and to that of their baby. If you can’t keep any food or liquid down, talk to your doctor right away.

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends a number of things that can help with morning sickness, including:

  • Vitamin B6
  • Ginger
  • Acupuncture and acupressure
  • Avoiding unpleasant smells
  • Getting enough rest
  • Avoiding spicy and fatty foods
  • Eating several smaller meals instead of three large ones

While not every remedy works for every woman, most women can get some relief by trying some or all of these.

So, what about you? Is morning sickness something you’ve discussed with your healthcare provider? If not, why? What’s keeping it off the table?


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