Morning sickness is when you have nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. Even though it’s called morning sickness, it can happen any time of day.
Morning sickness usually starts at about 6 weeks of pregnancy and goes away in the second trimester.
Lots of pregnant women have morning sickness. It usually doesn’t cause harm to you or your baby.
Hyperemesis gravidarum is severe nausea and vomiting that needs treatment (sometimes in a hospital) to help you get better.
If your morning sickness is severe or if it goes into your fourth month of pregnancy, tell your health care provider right away.
What is morning sickness?
Morning sickness (also called nausea and vomiting of pregnancy) is nausea (feeling sick to your stomach) and vomiting that happens in the first few months of pregnancy. Even though it's called morning sickness, it can last all day and happen any time of day.
At least 7 in 10 pregnant women have morning sickness in the first trimester (first 3 months) of pregnancy. It usually starts at about 6 weeks of pregnancy and is at its worst at about 9 weeks. Most women feel better in their second trimester, but some have morning sickness throughout pregnancy. If you have morning sickness, tell your health care provider.
Mild morning sickness doesn’t harm you or your baby. But if nausea and vomiting becomes severe (called hyperemesis gravidarum), it can cause serious problems during pregnancy. You may need to stay in the hospital for treatment.
What is hyperemesis gravidarum?
About 3 in 100 women may have hyperemesis gravidarum. This is extreme, excessive nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. It can cause you to lose weight and become dehydrated (not have enough water in your body). It can start early in pregnancy and last the entire pregnancy. If you have hyperemesis gravidarum, you need treatment to help keep you and your baby safe.
You may be at risk for hyperemesis gravidarum if you:
Are pregnant for the first time.
Are pregnant with a girl.
Are pregnant with multiples (twins, triplets or more). Being pregnant with more than one baby may increase your risk for severe morning sickness because you may have a large placenta and increased pregnancy hormones. The placenta grows in your uterus (womb) and supplies your babies with food and oxygen through the umbilical cord.
Had mild or severe morning sickness in a previous pregnancy, or your mother or sister had severe morning sickness during pregnancy. Take your family health history to help you find out about health conditions that run in your family.
Have motion sickness or migraines. A migraine is a severe headache that may make you sensitive to bright lights and sound.
Have trophoblastic disease, a condition that leads to abnormal cell growth in the uterus (womb).
Signs and symptoms of hyperemesis gravidarum include:
Vomiting more than 3 to 4 times a day
Vomiting that makes you dizzy or lightheaded
Vomiting that makes you dehydrated. Signs and symptoms of dehydration include feeling thirsty, dry mouth, a fast heartbeat or making little to no urine.
Losing more than 10 pounds in pregnancy
If you have hyperemesis gravidarum, your provider may treat you with medicine to help relieve your nausea and vomiting. You may need treatment in a hospital with intravenous (also called IV) fluids. IV fluids go through a needle into your vein. They help you stay hydrated and can give you nutrients that you usually get from food. If you continue to lose weight, you may need a feeding tube to make sure you’re getting enough nutrients for you and your baby.
What causes morning sickness?
We don’t know for sure what causes morning sickness. It may be caused by low blood sugar or increased pregnancy hormones. Morning sickness may be worse if you’re stressed or overly tired, if you eat certain foods or if you’re traveling (if you often have motion sickness).
Can you prevent or relieve morning sickness?
Yes. Here’s what you can do to help you feel better and even prevent morning sickness:
Take a prenatal vitamin before you get pregnant. Talk to your health care provider about which one to take. Sometimes vitamins can upset your stomach, so take it with a snack.
Keep snacks by your bed. Eat a few crackers before you get up in the morning to help settle your stomach.
Eat 5 or 6 small meals each day instead of 3 larger meals.
Eat foods that are low in fat and easy to digest, like cereal, rice and bananas. Don’t eat spicy or fatty foods.
Eat healthy snacks between meals. This can help keep your stomach from being empty and helps prevent nausea. Try snacks that are high in protein, like milk or yogurt.
Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
Avoid smells that upset your stomach.
You may have heard about these ways to prevent or relieve morning sickness. Talk to your provider before trying any of these:
Acupressure and acustimulation (also called electrical nerve stimulation) wristbands. These involve putting pressure on or stimulating certain points of the body (called pressure points) to help prevent nausea.
Acupuncture. This is a kind of treatment in which thin needles are put into your skin. If you’re thinking about acupuncture to help with morning sickness, tell your provider and find an acupuncturist who is trained to work with pregnant women.
Ginger. Ginger is the root of a plant that is used in cooking and medicine. Ginger ale, tea or candies may help relieve morning sickness.
Even if it’s legal where you live for either personal or medical use, it’s not safe to use marijuana to treat morning sickness. No amount of marijuana has been proven safe to use during pregnancy. If you’re thinking of using marijuana to help with morning sickness, talk with your provider about other treatments that are safer for your baby.
Is there medical treatment for morning sickness?
Yes. If you can’t relieve morning sickness on your own or if you have severe nausea and vomiting of pregnancy, your provider may treat you with these medicines:
Vitamin B6 and doxylamine. Your provider may treat you with these medicines separately or together. You can get vitamin B6 and doxylamine over-the-counter (OTC), which means you don’t need a prescription for them from your provider. Doxylamine is found in some OTC medicines that help you sleep. Or your provider may prescribe you a medicine that combines them.
Antiemetic drugs. These are drugs that help prevent vomiting. If Vitamin B6 and doxylamine don’t work, your provider may prescribe an antiemetic drug for you. Not all are safe to use during pregnancy, so talk to your provider to make sure the medicine is a good choice for you.
Talk with your provider before you take any medicine during pregnancy, even medicine to help treat morning sickness.
When should you call your health care provider about morning sickness?
For most women, morning sickness is mild and goes away over time. But call your provider if:
Your morning sickness continues into your 4th month of pregnancy.
You lose more than 2 pounds.
Your vomit is brown in color or has blood in it. If so, call your provider right away.
You vomit more than 3 times a day and can’t keep food or fluids down.
Your heart beats faster than usual.
You’re tired or confused.
You’re making much less urine than usual or no urine at all.
Last reviewed: September, 2020
Nutrition, weight & fitness
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Vomiting and morning sickness - NHS
Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy, often known as morning sickness, is very common in early pregnancy.
It can affect you at any time of the day or night or you may feel sick all day long.
Morning sickness is unpleasant, and can significantly affect your day-to-day life. But it usually clears up by weeks 16 to 20 of your pregnancy and does not put your baby at any increased risk.
There is a chance of developing a severe form of pregnancy sickness called hyperemesis gravidarum. This can be serious, and there's a chance you may not get enough fluids in your body (dehydration) or not get enough nutrients from your diet (malnourishment). You may need specialist treatment, sometimes in hospital.
Sometimes urinary tract infections (UTIs) can also cause nausea and vomiting. A UTI usually affects the bladder, but can spread to the kidneys.
Non-urgent advice: Call your midwife, GP or 111 if:
you're vomiting and:
have very dark-coloured urine or have not had a pee in more than 8 hours
are unable to keep food or fluids down for 24 hours
feel severely weak, dizzy or faint when standing up
have tummy (abdominal) pain
have a high temperature
have lost weight
Treatments for morning sickness
Unfortunately, there's no hard and fast treatment that will work for everyone’s morning sickness. Every pregnancy will be different.
But there are some changes you can make to your diet and daily life to try to ease the symptoms.
If these do not work for you or you're having more severe symptoms, your doctor or midwife might recommend medicine.
Things you can try yourself
If your morning sickness is not too bad, your GP or midwife will initially recommend you try some lifestyle changes:
get plenty of rest (tiredness can make nausea worse)
avoid foods or smells that make you feel sick
eat something like dry toast or a plain biscuit before you get out of bed
eat small, frequent meals of plain foods that are high in carbohydrate and low in fat (such as bread, rice, crackers and pasta)
eat cold foods rather than hot ones if the smell of hot meals makes you feel sick
drink plenty of fluids, such as water (sipping them little and often may help prevent vomiting)
eat foods or drinks containing ginger – there's some evidence ginger may help reduce nausea and vomiting (check with your pharmacist before taking ginger supplements during pregnancy)
try acupressure – there's some evidence that putting pressure on your wrist, using a special band or bracelet on your forearm, may help relieve the symptoms
Find out more about vitamins and supplements in pregnancy
If your nausea and vomiting is severe and does not improve after trying the above lifestyle changes, your GP may recommend a short-term course of an anti-sickness medicine, called an antiemetic, that's safe to use in pregnancy.
Often this will be a type of antihistamine, which are usually used to treat allergies but also work as medicines to stop sickness (antiemetic).
Antiemetics will usually be given as tablets for you to swallow.
But if you cannot keep these down, your doctor may suggest an injection or a type of medicine that's inserted into your bottom (suppository).
See your GP if you'd like to talk about getting anti-sickness medication.
Risk factors for morning sickness
It's thought hormonal changes in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy are probably one of the causes of morning sickness.
But you may be more at risk of it if:
you're having twins or more
you had severe sickness and vomiting in a previous pregnancy
you tend to get motion sickness (for example, car sick)
you have a history of migraine headaches
morning sickness runs in the family
you used to feel sick when taking contraceptives containing oestrogen
it's your first pregnancy
you're obese (your BMI is 30 or more)
you're experiencing stress
Visit the pregnancy sickness support site for tips for you and your partner on dealing with morning sickness.
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Video: how can I cope with morning sickness?
In this video, a midwife gives advice on how to deal with morning sickness during your pregnancy.
Media last reviewed: 27 February 2017 Media review due: 27 March 2020
Community content from HealthUnlocked
Page last reviewed: 13 April 2021 Next review due: 13 April 2024
Tired of nausea in the morning? Constantly sick after eating? We understand the reasons!
Why do you feel sick in the morning?
Causes of nausea after eating
How to determine the exact cause of nausea?
What to do if the gastroenterologist did not reveal violations?
Nausea, heaviness in the stomach, heartburn are familiar to everyone. I overate on fatty delicacies at the festive table - unpleasant sensations will not be long in coming. I drank expired kefir or too much alcohol - nausea is right there. The reasons are simple and clear. In the first case, there were not enough enzymes to digest food, and the liver had to work at its limit. In the second, toxic substances entered the body, which caused poisoning. These symptoms are unpleasant, but they are temporary. And they usually go away after a few days or even hours. But what if you feel sick all the time? We need to figure out the reasons!
Why do you feel sick in the morning?
Waking up daily in the morning with a feeling of nausea, which makes you refuse breakfast and "come to yourself" for a long time, may be associated with nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux (reflux of bile into the esophagus). By itself, it is not a pathology, since normally it occurs mainly after eating and does not cause discomfort. The body for its suppression includes compensatory antireflux mechanisms.
But if an unpleasant symptom is observed frequently and lasts for a long time, then we can talk about gastroesophageal reflux disease or diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. MRI of the abdominal cavity will help to find out the exact cause and make a diagnosis.
Causes of nausea after eating
Nausea after breakfast or lunch can be caused by heavy meals (mainly fatty), overeating, psychogenic eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia).
But in most cases, the patient's unpleasant condition is associated with pathologies of the gastrointestinal tract: gastritis, colitis, peptic ulcer, enteritis.
How to determine the exact cause of nausea?
The spectrum of possible violations, as we see, is quite "rich". Nausea can be caused by the liver, gallbladder, biliary tract, pancreas, stomach, small intestine, duodenum, lower esophageal sphincter, and gastroesophageal junction.
Problems can cause inflammation, erosion, ulcers, cysts, tumors, gallstones. The cause may be stenosis (narrowing) of the output section of the stomach, fibrosis, cirrhosis and fatty degeneration of the liver (hepatosis). Often, patients are diagnosed with functional disorders.
Abdominal MRI is recommended to determine the gastrointestinal cause of nausea and rule out a tumor causing dysphagia (food obstruction and stagnation).
A highly informative study allows the patient not to run around the doctors' offices, checking each organ separately. And immediately simulate a three-dimensional image of each organ, see its layered sections. And get an idea of the overall picture: the thickness and changes in the walls of the stomach, the state of the gallbladder, the size of the liver, pancreas, duodenum, esophagus, track their functions in real time. MRI provides better visualization of the gastrointestinal tract than CT, so this method is preferable in most cases.
Examination can be done without and with contrast. In the second case, the cost of abdominal MRI will be higher, but the study will provide more accurate information on tumor neoplasms.
What should I do if the gastroenterologist has not identified any abnormalities?
It also happens that after the examination, the gastroenterologist tells the patient that no pathologies have been detected on his part. However, such joyful news does not yet mean that the person who came with complaints is heroically healthy.
The etiopathogenesis of nausea may be associated with:
diseases of the inner ear;
pathologies of the brain and central nervous system;
head injuries and post-traumatic syndromes;
viral, bacterial and parasitic infections (often not associated with the gastrointestinal tract, but affecting the lungs, ENT organs, central nervous system).
Nausea is not a disease, but a symptom of some disorder or disease. Therefore, if it is not associated with toxic poisoning, then you need to look for and eliminate the cause, and not fight the effect.
Some medicines (eg, metoclopramide) can reduce nausea. But it is advisable to take any medication only as prescribed by a doctor, because self-medication can only exacerbate the problem.
The article was checked by a specialist doctor:
Alexander Ivanovich Basargin
MRI diagnostician, CT diagnostician, Radiologist
Computed tomography doctor, magnetic resonance imaging doctor, category I doctor
Total work experience: 14 years.
Active member of the ESR Society since 2011.
Examination of a patient using Computed Tomography, Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the head, thoracic region, spine, and extremities.
Place of work: Regional hospital named after. Wagner E.A. Berezniki
Why nausea in the morning on an empty stomach - causes and how to treat at home
male or even children
Do not worry too much if you have encountered such a problem once, it is likely that this is a banal poisoning. But, if nausea in the morning on an empty stomach does not go away, you should immediately consult a doctor. Some people are used to dealing with this problem with folk remedies and medicines and they really get better, but it is worth considering that most likely the disease or pathology itself continues to develop. And as a result, it will turn into a more serious form. That is why it is so important to consult a doctor who will find out the cause of morning sickness and prescribe the most effective treatment.
Most often, morning sickness on an empty stomach may indicate the presence of the following diseases: unpleasant symptoms. This is due to inflammatory processes in the duodenum 12. The patient can also be tormented by: burning, bloating during and after eating, heartburn.
Inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) - also characterized by nausea in the morning, as well as after eating fatty or fried foods. This disease is easily confused with gastritis due to the similarity of symptoms, but with pancreatitis, the patient begins to have problems with stools and an unpleasant, bitter taste in the mouth.
Appendicitis - nausea is likely to fade into the background after unbearable pain in the right side begins to appear.
Inflammation of the gallbladder (cholecystitis) - this disease can also be accompanied by morning nausea. Accompanying symptoms are pain in the right hypochondrium and excessive gas formation.
Other causes of nausea in the morning
After eliminating the above diseases from the list of causes, the following causes can be considered:
Pregnancy. Intoxication and nausea in the morning is often found in pregnant women, especially in the early stages. This is a normal reaction of the body to significant changes and hormonal changes. It is very important to completely exclude drugs for the treatment of the digestive tract during pregnancy. These funds can have an extremely negative impact on the health of the patient, the unborn child and the course of pregnancy. Therefore, you will have to endure this ailment and get by with folk remedies, but be sure to consult your doctor.
Migraine. Morning sickness on an empty stomach may precede a severe headache. You will most likely still feel a lot of noise and increased sensitivity to smells.
High blood pressure (hypertension). The problem of morning sickness can be accompanied by headache and dizziness. If you do not pay attention to these symptoms in a timely manner, you risk starting this disease, which in turn can lead to a stroke.
Cardiovascular disease - rarely, nausea on an empty stomach occurs with heart failure or developing myocardial infarction. If nausea is accompanied by pain, a feeling of heaviness and tightness behind the sternum, numbness or tingling in one half of the body, it is necessary to seek medical help as soon as possible, as this may be an incipient myocardial infarction.
Increased intracranial pressure - Nausea and regurgitation in infants can occur with increased pressure inside the ventricles of the brain.
What to do if you feel sick in the morning
It is important to understand that regular morning sickness is a signal of the presence of a pathology or disease and it is highly undesirable to self-medicate. Be sure to consult a doctor for an examination, but if you don’t have such an opportunity at the moment, there are several effective ways that will help reduce or temporarily get rid of this problem:
Medicines. You need to be very careful and you must be sure that morning sickness is not the cause of pregnancy or an intestinal disease.
Ginger root, mint and lemon drinks. You can make infusions of these products for maximum effect, simply by adding them to a glass and boiling water, after 15 minutes you will have a very effective and safe (in the absence of allergies) remedy for morning sickness. YOU can also just add them to hot tea.
Medicinal collection - if nausea relentlessly torments you in the morning, you can try a collection of mint, oak bark and celandine. To prepare the drink, take 1 tsp of mint leaves, dried oak bark and chopped celandine, pour 0.5 l of boiling water and boil in a water bath for 10 minutes. After the broth is cooled and filtered, take 1 tablespoon 3-5 times a day before meals.