In addition to the physical changes experienced during pregnancy, expectant mothers may also encounter various physiological disorders at different stages of gestation. These common ailments include:
Certain common disorders, while part of the pregnancy experience, typically do not necessitate intervention by a gynecologist. These may include:
- Mood swings
- Increased urgency to urinate
- Breast swelling and heightened sensitivity
- Changes in skin pigmentation
While these issues are generally considered normal, other complaints might become significantly troublesome, impacting a woman’s overall well-being and requiring medical evaluation.
Termed “morning sickness,” nausea and vomiting can manifest anytime during early pregnancy. These symptoms are prevalent in the early months and are often attributed to chorionic gonadotropin (HGC). Specific foods may trigger nausea and vomiting or smells previously enjoyed by the woman. Typically, these symptoms tend to subside after the third month of pregnancy.
Management of morning sickness often includes simple strategies such as
- Gently rising from bed
- Consuming dry snacks
- Frequent, smaller meals
- Hydrating with lemon or cola-flavored popsicles
Medication or hospitalization might be required if dehydration and excessive weight loss occur in cases of persistent and severe nausea and vomiting.
Heartburn During Pregnancy
Heartburn, attributed to stomach acid refluxing into the esophagus, is a common complaint during pregnancy. It can lead to discomfort, sore throats, and sleep disturbances. To alleviate heartburn, pregnant individuals are advised to:
Reduce meal portions
- Avoid coffee, tea, and other irritants
- Refrain from smoking and alcohol
- Avoid lying down immediately after eating
- Elevate the head during sleep using pillows
If heartburn persists despite these measures, medical advice may recommend specific medications.
Insomnia During Pregnancy
Insomnia can be triggered by fears about the baby’s health, ultrasound examinations, or the approaching delivery. In most cases, insomnia can be managed by following expert advice from pregnancy preparation classes, avoiding bedtime immediately after meals, and potentially enjoying a relaxing herbal tea.
Itching During Pregnancy
While often underestimated, itching during pregnancy might indicate poor liver function. This issue generally arises during the final trimester when hormonal changes can lead to hepatic cholestasis, an accumulation of bile salts in the tissues, causing widespread itching. Consulting a gynecologist when faced with severe itching during pregnancy is essential.
Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy
Hemorrhoids are a frequent physiological disorder during pregnancy, linked to hormonal changes and blood vessel involvement. These are essentially swollen veins in the anal canal, occasionally causing itching. Severe discomfort warrants consultation with a gynecologist instead of self-treatment.
Leg Swelling During Pregnancy
Hormonal changes contributing to hemorrhoid dilation also impact leg veins— poor venous circulation results in swollen ankles, leg pain, and occasional itching. Wearing elastic stockings during pregnancy is recommended to alleviate and prevent varicose veins. As the abdominal volume increases with fetal growth, leg swelling may lead to joint pain and difficulty walking.
Back Pain During Pregnancy
The body adapts to fetal growth, altering weight distribution and often curving the back. Maintaining good posture, wearing flat shoes, and avoiding heavy lifting can mitigate back pain. If symptoms persist and worsen, consulting an orthopedist is advisable for further evaluation and management.