We have always heard people rambling about morning sickness, fatigue, sore breasts etc. during pregnancy. But there are symptoms which nobody wants to talk about because they are very strange and most people start to wonder if it’s normal or not.
Therefore, in this blog, we are going to talk about symptoms which unnecessarily terrorize you because of their infamous nature. And, of course, how to deal with them. Almost every symptom affects more than half of the pregnant women.
Hot Flashes During Pregnancy
Around 1 in 3 pregnant women experiences hot flashes during pregnancy. Yes, it’s not that uncommon but it’s something which vanishes away in a few minutes. This is why pregnant women feel it is easier to deal with than other symptoms they experience.
A hot flash generally feels like a hot sensation of heat and sweat with a rapid heartbeat, which can cause your face to become red. It generally happens in the region above the chest area but could sometimes radiate to your palms and soles of your feet as well.
Most of the women deal with hot flashes in the morning as soon as they wake up (because of hot flash) but it could happen at other points of the day too.
Hot flashes start during the early first trimester (which is why it’s also considered one of the early signs of pregnancy) and return back by the end of the third trimester and continue till fourth-trimester a.k.a the Postpartum. The timing of hot flashes is in line with the change in hormones. The hormones increase during the first trimester so as to take care of the fetus and form placenta as soon as possible. Once the placenta formation is complete most of your woes of early pregnancy like morning sickness, fatigue, hot flashes etc. go away. It comes back again when your body again releases hormones ( relaxin and oxytocin ) to prepare you for labor. After childbirth, all of them go down to a normal level, which can cause chills along with hot flashes.
Things which could help:
- Avoid crowded and hot places at all points of time.
- Wear loose clothes.
- Keep your room cool while sleeping.
- Don’t take hot shower or bath.
Dysgeusia a.k.a Metallic Taste in Mouth
The metallic taste is also an early sign of pregnancy. It happens due to a surge in estrogen and is often a sidekick of morning sickness. Estrogen interferes with our taste buds and is also the one responsible for your heightened sense of smell. Both of them together are guilty for unpleasant taste in your mouth even when you are not eating.
Things which can help are:
- Ginger – Ginger tea or Lemonade with a tinge of ginger
- Rinse your mouth with a sea salt solution or a baking soda solution.
- Try acidic foods and drinks such as orange juice, lemonade etc.
- Pickles are helpful for both nausea and metallic taste.
- Try Spicy foods as their strong taste lingers around for a longer time.
Passing Gas during pregnancy is a not so talked about symptom for obvious reasons. Another hormone which surges at the same pace as estrogen is progesterone. Progesterone helps in stretching out and relaxing the muscles. The downturn of this is excessive smoothing out of muscles of the digestive tract and other parts of lower abdomen which leads to lower back pain and problems with digestion.
Your digestion slows down by 30%. This causes an increase in gas formation.
Things which can help:
- Eat slowly and chew your food making it easy on the digestive system.
- Increase your fiber intake to at least 30 grams a day.
- Track your diet and find out what interferes more with digestion. Eliminate suspicious foods like dairy, broccoli, cabbage etc. one by one for a week to find out the culprit.
- Exercise more. Join prenatal yoga classes.
- Have smaller meals instead of stuffing yourself with food.
Leaking small amounts of urine while sneezing, coughing or laughing hard is termed as urinary continence. This happens because your cervix expands throughout pregnancy so that the dilation becomes easier as you approach to labor. Also baby puts an excessive pressure on the bladder, which decreases its capacity to hold even the smallest amount of urine.
DON’T STOP drinking water because of this. Dehydration can cause painful cramps and increase the chances of preterm labor.
Start doing Kegels. They are the best natural way to defeat this. Kegels will also speed up your postpartum vaginal recovery after childbirth.
How to do Kegels:
Squeeze your pelvic muscles and hold for 2-3 seconds release and relax for at least 10 seconds. Do this for about 10-20 times.
After a month or so or whenever you feel comfortable start with increasing the squeezing time to 5 seconds and relaxation to 10 seconds. You could also try 10 seconds of squeezing and 10 seconds of relaxing after a while.
Some tips to remember:
- Don’t hold your breath.
- Don’t use any other muscles.
- Don’t perform these exercise if your bladder is half or fully full.
- Inform your doctor that you are doing these exercises.
- Don’t overdo these exercises. 2 times a day with 5-10 repetitions is perfect.
To get maximum benefit perform them on a birthing ball. We all know that exercises with birthing balls during pregnancy are highly recommended to give you support and make exercise a little less intense but effective. While performing pelvic exercises on the birthing ball, sit on it in squatting position and try to do these pelvic floor exercises.
Cold and Cough during Pregnancy
Almost 70% of women suffer from runny noses and nasal congestion during pregnancy. It might be accompanied by a little fever too. It’s more common in the first trimester than any other trimesters due to the overburdened immune system, which is already busy in developing and protecting the baby against any birth defects or miscarriage. This can make your body highly prone to bacteria and viruses.
It’s best to see your doctor as he will be able to properly prescribe medications depending upon how far you are in your pregnancy. If you are planning to go for any herbal remedy, discuss it with your OB/GYN too.
Slight leakage from breasts is common in pregnant women and most of you would have heard that it occurs by the end of the third trimester. But the same thing could also happen by the end of first trimester and around 26-30 weeks too. Those who experience leakage during first and second trimester are more likely to have more leakage by the end of pregnancy.
Your breast might also feel very engorged because of increased milk ducts.
Things which can help are:
- Putting breast pad and also changing them regularly.
- Wear properly sized cotton maternity bra since tight bras can stimulate the breasts increasing leakage and could also irritate your engorged breasts.
Excessive Salivation a.k.a Ptyalism
Excessive salivation is also one of the very early signs of pregnancy, which is accompanied by morning sickness. Progesterone is responsible for this symptom along with making you more prone to gum sensitivity and cavities.
It’s best that you visit your dentist more frequently because gum health is directly related to increased risk of miscarriage and stillbirth. Use mouthwash and toothpaste prescribed by the doctor.
More Body Hair in Pregnancy
More body hair during pregnancy is very common. The only advantage of this is thicker hair on your scalp. You might notice a sudden thick growth on parts of your face, around the areola and basically all of your body. Androgen and estrogen together are responsible for this hair surprise.
You can go for normal hair removal methods like waxing, shaving, threading etc. but don’t go for any laser treatments. None of the former will hurt your baby even though it might be slightly painful to you.
Snoring When You Sleep
Even for women who had absolutely no history snoring of EVER might have this for the very first time during pregnancy. The chances increase by the end of pregnancy. Snoring increases due to congestion of nasal passages due to heavy blood flow and your weight. Even though there can be other causes of sleep apnea, the chances of suffering from it are very low.
Things which could help are:
- Sleeping on your left side as it increases blood flow.
- Try to gain the recommended amount of weight depending on your BMI and the number of babies you are carrying.
Which of these unusual symptoms were a part of your pregnancy? Since every pregnancy is different, did you go through any other weird symptom like let’s say crying at a pet commercial etc? We look forward to reading them and adding them to our list too.