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Common Pregnancy Problems

By Susan Tanner

All pregnant women will agree that the first few months of pregnancy are unpleasant, to say the least. You may experience morning sickness, swelling in the legs and ankles, abdominal pains and cramps, heartburn, constipation, fatigue, bladder problems, and a myriad of problems in between. The goal of this article is to help you deal with these issues and feel better.

Morning Sickness

Morning sickness is probably the most common of the pregnancy symptoms. Don't be fooled; morning sickness nausea will come at any time of the day, not just in the morning. To help prevent nausea in the morning, wake up slowly. Try eating some plain crackers or dry cereal before getting out of bed. Avoid warm places; heat can increase nauseas feelings. Keep fresh air flowing by opening windows, or turning on exhaust fans. Cooking things in the microwave will emit fewer odors than cooking in the oven or stovetop. Eat something salty before meals, avoid greasy or spicy foods, and try not to drink fluids with your meals. Spread your meals out throughout the day, into about 6 smaller meals. Try taking your prenatals later in the day, and ask your doctor about vitamin B6 and ginger supplements. Sipping on fizzy water with lemon in it, or non-caffeinated teas like peppermint and ginger can help calm nausea.

Abdominal Pain or Cramps

There are many changes going on in your body. A lot of stress is being put on your abdominal muscles, which can cause sharp pains and cramps. To relieve these pains, try using a warm heating pad. To prevent these pains, try strengthening your abdominal muscles. Talk to your doctor to find out which kinds of exercises are best for you.


Throughout your pregnancy, you may experience some swelling. Wearing support hose can help to control your weight gain in your legs and ankles. Avoid standing for long periods of time. Wear well-fitting shoes, or buy inserts designed especially for pregnant women. Avoid diuretics, as these will lead to increased swelling. Stay off your feet as much as possible, and elevate your legs when sitting. Lying down is even better than sitting.


To combat constipation, you should exercise regularly, drink plenty of water, and eat lots of fibrous foods such as fruits and vegetables, and whole grain cereals and breads.


Fatigue can come from sleepless nights due to aches and pains or vivid dreams, or simply from too much stress. The most effective method for dealing with fatigue is to get plenty of rest. Take several naps during the day. Eat a well balanced diet, including about an extra 300 calories per day. Iron deficiency is a leading cause of fatigue, so be sure to get enough. Although it may seem counter-productive, fatigue can often be relieved by exercising. Exercise will be refreshing and will leave you feeling energized.


Many of the remedies associated with nausea will also help you deal with heartburn. In addition, chew fennel or papaya enzymes, and avoid wearing tight clothing.

Bladder Problems

Bladder problems can be among the most bothersome of pregnancy related issues. First and foremost, drink plenty of water. Avoid junk food, refined starches, coffee, sugar, tea, and foods high in acidic content. Avoid using soap on your genitals. Be sure to empty your bladder and wash with water after intercourse. Wipe from front to back after using the bathroom. Try to include cabbage, leeks, and garlic in your diet, drink 3 glasses of cranberry juice every day, and take a vitamin C supplement.

Some women get more problems than others, but they generally get a little easier during the second trimester. In general, just make sure to get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water, get some exercise regularly, eat a well balanced diet, and try to keep an optimistic mindset.

About The Author

Susan Tanner is a wife and mother of three. She is also the editor of Pregnancy-Guide is an online community for mothers to find support and valuable information. Please visit Pregnancy-Guide at


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