Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Dr Kieren Wilson

Common Pregnancy Symptoms

Pregnancy is a wonderful and rewarding time for many women, however it doesn’t come without it’s challenges. Every pregnancy is different. Whilst some expectant mums don’t experience any pregnancy symptoms, many do have some unwelcome issues to deal with. And for a number of women, those issues can have a significant impact on overall wellbeing.

The key thing to remember is most of these symptoms will ease, and most likely disappear once baby arrives. However, that doesn’t bring any respite in the short term, though there are some other measures that will help.

If you’re experience any of the conditions below, or any other unwelcome pregnancy symptoms, It’s important to talk to your doctor. There really is no need to suffer in silence.

 

Common Pregnancy Symptoms

6 Common Pregnancy Symptoms

Pregnancy is a wonderful and rewarding time for many women, however it doesn’t come without it’s challenges. Every pregnancy is different. Whilst some expectant mums don’t experience any pregnancy symptoms, many do have some unwelcome issues to deal with. And for a number of women, those issues can have a significant impact on overall wellbeing.

The key thing to remember is most of these symptoms will ease, and most likely disappear once baby arrives. However, that doesn’t bring any respite in the short term, though there are some other measures that will help.

If you’re experience any of the conditions below, or any other unwelcome pregnancy symptoms, It’s important to talk to your doctor. There really is no need to suffer in silence.

1. Heartburn or Reflux

Heartburn or reflux is something that affects between 30-50% women during pregnancy. And whilst it isn’t harmful it can be distressing particularly when it persists.

There are some things you can do to try and relieve that painful burning sensation, including:

  • Try and avoid food and drinks that trigger your reflux
  • East smaller more frequent meals
  • Sleep on your left side
  • Raise the head of your bed with extra pillows or by propping your mattress
  • Avoid lying down straight after eating
  • Eat slowly and try to sit up straight
  • Try not to eat too late in the day

If nothing helps, then do talk to your doctor as there are other medical treatments that you can consider to help relieve the symptoms.

Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Reflux
Common Pregnancy Symptoms Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

2. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a fairly common condition experienced by pregnant women. It occurs because of increased fluid retention which causes swelling, resulting in pain and discomfort in your hand and wrist. 

The good news is it usually resolves itself once baby arrives.

Whilst the effectiveness of treatments during pregnancy is limited, you should discuss your symptoms with your doctor as there are steps that can be taken to help relieve the affects.

 

Wearing a splint and limiting movement can help, particularly if you find yourself performing repetitive tasks during the day like using a keyboard and mouse.

 

2. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a fairly common condition experienced by pregnant women. It occurs because of increased fluid retention which causes swelling, resulting in pain and discomfort in your hand and wrist. 

The good news is it usually resolves itself once baby arrives.

Whilst the effectiveness of treatments during pregnancy is limited, you should discuss your symptoms with your doctor as there are steps that can be taken to help relieve the affects.

Wearing a splint and limiting movement can help, particularly if you find yourself performing repetitive tasks during the day like using a keyboard and mouse.

 

Common Pregnancy Symptoms Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

3. Varicose Veins

Whilst they’re unlikely to cause any harm to you or baby, varicose veins are one of the more pregnancy symptoms. 

They happen when the uterus applies pressure to the large vein (the inferior vena cava) that carries blood back to the heart from your feet and legs. Varicose veins can become itchy, uncomfortable, or even painful.

However, like many pregnancy conditions, they usually improve or disappear altogether once baby arrives.

Compression stockings can help, and I also suggest to my patients that they elevate their feet as much as possible and avoid standing for long periods.

Common Pregnancy Symptoms Varicose Veins
Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Anxiety & Depression

4. Anxiety, Depression & Low Mood

At a time when society tells you that you should be happy, that you’re blooming and you’re so blessed, many women experience guilt when they feel anything but.

Symptoms, from feeling a bit low through to severe anxiety and depression, impact a significant number of women from conception, through to the early stages of motherhood.

The important thing to know is you’re not alone. You will find many of those around you have shared the same feelings or know someone else who has experienced the same thing. 

Feelings of worry, anxiety about the birth, the impact on your life and relationships, and changes to your body are all very normal.

Some of the things you can do to help include:

Talk to someone – it does help to talk about your worries

Fresh Air – getting outside in nature can help you feel more positive

Exercise – depending on your pre-pregnancy exercise, getting involved in group fitness during pregnancy is a great idea or just pop out for a walk

Professional support – importantly, whatever the worry, you should speak to your obstetrician and get professional advice to put your mind at ease

Choose your resources carefully – relying on Dr Google can leave you feeling even more overwhelmed

Self-care – do something nice, get your nails done, have a warm bath or curl up and watch a few episodes of your latest binge

 

4. Anxiety, Depression & Low Mood

At a time when society tells you that you should be happy, that you’re blooming and you’re so blessed, many women experience guilt when they feel anything but.

Symptoms, from feeling a bit low through to severe anxiety and depression, impact a significant number of women from conception, through to the early stages of motherhood.

The important thing to know is you’re not alone. You will find many of those around you have shared the same feelings or know someone else who has experienced the same thing. 

Feelings of worry, anxiety about the birth, the impact on your life and relationships, and changes to your body are all very normal.

Some of the things you can do to help include:

Talk to someone – it does help to talk about your worries

Fresh Air – getting outside in nature can help you feel more positive

Exercise – depending on your pre-pregnancy exercise, getting involved in group fitness during pregnancy is a great idea or just pop out for a walk

Professional support – importantly, whatever the worry, you should speak to your obstetrician and get professional advice to put your mind at ease

Choose your resources carefully – relying on Dr Google can leave you feeling even more overwhelmed

Self-care – do something nice, get your nails done, have a warm bath or curl up and watch a few episodes of your latest binge

 

Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Anxiety & Depression

5. Morning Sickness

Morning sickness is something every expectant mum dreads! 

It’s estimated that around 70-80% of pregnant women will experience some kind of nausea or vomiting during pregnancy, particularly in the first trimester. And it’s not fun.

There are a few things you can try to help relieve the symptoms:

  • Choose foods that are bland and easy to digest – not an exciting prospect I know, but this is not the time for rich or greasy food
  • Try to snack, having something in your stomach will help ease feelings of nausea even though that seems counter intuitive
  • Drink plenty of fluid
  • Try to get some fresh air and maybe avoid smells that you find triggering
  • There may be some alternative therapies such as aromatherapy scents in your home or ginger herbal supplements that could help – always check with your doctor before trying anything new 

 

If you find your sickness is persistent and becomes difficult to manage you should talk to your health care provider.

Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Morning Sickness
Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Haemorrhoids Constipation

6. Constipation & Haemorrhoids

An increase in the progesterone hormone during pregnancy causes the relaxation of your body’s muscles. That includes your intestines. And slower moving intestines means slower digestion. This can lead to constipation.

Drinking more fluids, especially good old fashioned plain water, has a range of benefits and can help ease constipation. 

It’s also important to ensure you have a good amount of fibre in your diet and focus on eating a wide variety of nutritious foods, including plenty of vegetables, fruit, wholegrain cereals and breads, nuts, seeds and legumes.

Haemorrhoids are another unwelcome and often painful pregnancy symptom, which are exacerbated by constipation. Whilst haemorrhoids often disappear after the birth, you should also do what you can to avoid constipation or straining with bowel movements. Speak to your doctor about what creams you can use to help ease pain and discomfort.

6. Constipation & Haemorrhoids

An increase in the progesterone hormone during pregnancy causes the relaxation of your body’s muscles. That includes your intestines. And slower moving intestines means slower digestion. This can lead to constipation.

Drinking more fluids, especially good old fashioned plain water, has a range of benefits and can help ease constipation. 

It’s also important to ensure you have a good amount of fibre in your diet and focus on eating a wide variety of nutritious foods, including plenty of vegetables, fruit, wholegrain cereals and breads, nuts, seeds and legumes.

Haemorrhoids are another unwelcome and often painful pregnancy symptom, which are exacerbated by constipation. Whilst haemorrhoids often disappear after the birth, you should also do what you can to avoid constipation or straining with bowel movements. Speak to your doctor about what creams you can use to help ease pain and discomfort.

Common Pregnancy Symptoms - Haemorrhoids Constipation

If you would like to discuss your pregnancy, please also feel free to contact Dr Kieren Wilson’s rooms and we would be more than happy to answer your questions. You can email us on info@drkierenwilson.com.au or call 02 9923 4222.

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