According to the Australian Department of Health, 15 to 20% of pregnant women may experience motion sickness towards the end of their pregnancy, i.e. until the third trimester, and 5% may experience it until the actual delivery. Although the symptom is most common during early pregnancy, there are physiological explanations for why it also occurs near the baby's arrival.
"In the last trimester of pregnancy, the uterus has already increased its volume, compressing and modifying the positioning of the normal structures of the abdomen, such as the liver, the stomach and the intestinal loops. Therefore, it is more common to feel swelling, reflux, and heartburn during this period. In addition, the sum of these factors can contribute to nausea", explains Alexandre Pupo, gynecologist and obstetrician atSírio Libanês and Albert Einstein Hospitals.
However, unlike in the beginning of pregnancy, motion sickness in late pregnancy does not occur exclusively in the morning. It can appear at any time of the day. In fact, it is also known that the craving in this period does not occur due to the hormonal environment that is formed in pregnancy - especially in the beginning so that it can be maintained and evolve in a healthy way.
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What can be done to ease nausea at the end of pregnancy?
According to Alexandre, the main alternative to ease the symptom is in the diet. In other words, he recommends that the pregnant woman eat in smaller amounts, but more often a day.
The specialist also advises pregnant women to avoid very liquid foods, such as stews, because this increases the likelihood of reflux when lying down and, consequently, of nausea.
"Finally, if possible, it is important that pregnant women prefer to rest facing to the left side. This way, pressure on the stomach is avoided", explains Alexandre. In fact, not by chance, this is the best position for pregnant women to sleep. Click here to know more about it!
- Dr. Alexandre Pupo, gynecologist and obstetrician at the Sírio Libanês and Albert Einstein Hospitals.