Pregnancy, Nausea, & Vomiting

Nausea typically begins about 5 to 6 weeks and peaks about 11 weeks, resolving by 14 weeks for about half of women who experience it and by 22 weeks for 90 percent. Persistent or severe nausea beyond the first trimester should be further evaluated. One or all or any combination of these comfort measures can be tried to find the most effective relief for you:

  1. Eat small, frequent meals, even as often as every 2 hours, because nausea is more common on an empty or overly full stomach. The more often you eat, the more chances you have to keep at least a little something down. Eat what sounds good to you and try cold foods if smells bother you.
  2. Eat a protein snack at bedtime and keep protein snacks by the bed to eat each time you awaken during the night to keep blood sugar stable and help prevent morning nausea.
  3. Eat dry crackers, potato chips, lemon drops, ginger cookies or toast before getting up in the morning.
  4. Make sure each meal or snack contains a source of protein to keep blood sugar stable.
  5. Do not brush your teeth immediately after getting up in the morning or right after eating to avoid stimulating the gag reflex at these susceptible times.
  6. Drink carbonated beverages, especially ginger ale that contains real ginger (like Canada Dry). Try keeping an unopened can by the bed to drink warm before getting up in the morning.
  7. Suck on lemon drops or sip lemonade throughout the day or when nauseated.
  8. Avoid food with strong or offensive flavors or slimy and overly chewy textures.
  9. Limit fat in your diet as it is hard to digest.
  10. Try acupressure wrist bands, like Sea-Bands, at P6 acupressure point per package instructions – available at pharmacies, Wal-Mart, Target, etc.
  11. Rest! Nap daily or at least lie down whenever possible.
  12. Stop prenatal vitamins until nausea resolves and just take folic acid 400mg by mouth daily.
  13. Ginger capsules 250mg by mouth 4 times a day or 8 ounces of ginger tea 4 times a day.
  14. For mild nausea without vomiting, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) 25mg by mouth 3 times a day.
  15. For moderate nausea with mild vomiting (≤ 2 times a day) or if no relief from Vitamin B6 alone, ADD Unisom (doxylamine) 12.5mg (1/2 tablet) by mouth at bedtime and continue Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) 25mg by mouth 3 times a day.
  16. If no relief after 4-5 days, try Unisom (doxylamine) 25mg by mouth at bedtime and 12.5mg (1/2 tablet) in the morning and in the midafternoon PLUS Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) 25mg three times a day. May also increase Vitamin B6 to 50mg at bedtime with 25mg in morning and midafternoon if needed.
  17. Unisom can cause drowsiness. Start with bedtime dose for 4-5 days first to decrease drowsiness then add as needed and as tolerated in morning and afternoon. NOTE: Bedtime dose helps with morning nausea, morning dose helps with afternoon nausea, and afternoon dose helps with evening nausea so adjust times for your particular needs.