Ladies, some good news is coming your way. If you’re struggling with morning sickness this bit of information may comfort you.
It’s possible that you will give birth to a genius.
Okay, maybe not a genius, but studies have shown that women who suffer with morning sickness have a higher chance of delivering a baby with a higher IQ.
You have the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto to thank for this nugget of good news.
This particular study concentrated on 121 children aged between 3 to 7 years and was looking for any long term neurological effects from their mothers taking Diclectin (an anti nausea drug) during pregnancy.
The results showed that the children who’s mothers suffered with morning sickness performed better on tests around language skills, memory and general IQ regardless of whether they took Diclectin or not.
It’s also worth highlighting that all children, whether their mother had morning sickness or not, showed mental development within the normal range.
So don’t worry if you haven’t experienced morning sickness, you might have a genius too.
The Truth About Morning Sickness
Whilst morning sickness has always been a reality for many mothers to be, it was thrust into the limelight upon the news that Kate Middleton herself experienced severe hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) during her pregnancies
Hyperemesis gravidarum is a severe form of sickness and is different from the common type of morning sickness that most moms-to-be experience.
Around every 1 in 50 women will suffer from this extreme form, whilst more than 1 in 2 women will experience some kind of morning sickness or nausea throughout their pregnancy, whether only in the first trimester, or right up until the third.
Some women experience only nausea, whilst some actually vomit, and it is most common during the first trimester.
This is down to changes in hormones, which are rapidly increasing at this stage of pregnancy.
Whether the old adage about morning sickness being a precursor to a healthy pregnancy or not remains to be seen, as there is no study to prove that claim, however there is some suggestion that morning sickness is linked to a lower incidence of pregnancy loss.
The term ‘morning sickness’ is somewhat of a fallacy as it is entirely possible to experience nausea, with or without vomiting, at any point in the day.
Despite that, some women experience it far worse after waking up.
Many women notice nausea and vomiting as one of the earliest signs of pregnancy, beginning as early as the 4th week of pregnancy and it usually eases off around around the 14th week.
That isn’t always the truth for every women however, as pregnancy is a very ‘one size doesn’t fit all’ deal.
Around 1 in 5 pregnant women will experience some degree of morning sickness into their second trimester also, with some noticing it right up until delivery.
It’s important to point out that morning sickness isn’t harmful unless it is severe.
If you are experiencing extreme nausea which is causing you to be unable to eat or drink, or you are vomiting a lot, it’s important to discuss this with your midwife or doctor as a matter of urgency.
This can result in nutrients not being delivered to the baby, and dehydration which is dangerous for mother and baby in turn. In this case, treatment can be given to help the situation.
This may involve hospitalisation in severe cases.
When morning sickness is severe and left untreated it can lead to:
- Imbalances in electrolyte levels
- Anxiety and depression symptoms
- Lack of nutrients being delivered to the baby
- Pressure on the brain, heart, kidneys, and the liver
Mild morning sickness is not dangerous to either mother or child and is extremely common.
How to Ease Morning Sickness
If the news that you may be about to give birth to a child with a high IQ didn’t make you feel better, there are several ways you can help relieve the symptoms of morning sickness, until the phase hopefully passes.
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated – 8 x 8oz glasses per day is the general rule. If you are vomiting, make sure you rehydrate yourself afterwards. Sipping water will be easier than trying to chug it down.
- Eat small meals regularly, to avoid overloading your stomach and contributing to nausea.
- Avoid fast food or meals with high fat content
- Eat when you feel hungry and don’t force yourself to wait for specific meal times
- Some women find the smell of food causes them to be nauseous, and in that case you can ask someone else to do the cooking!
- Try ginger as this is known to help with general nausea, e.g. travel sickness
- Try acupressure wristbands for nausea
It’s also worth remembering that morning sickness is far more likely to be less of a problem after your first trimester, with far less women experiencing it far into their pregnancy.
If this does happen to you however, you can speak to your doctor or midwife about specific treatments to help ease the problem for you.