Many women find that when they're expecting, they will have to deal with fatigue during pregnancy. In fact, pregnancy fatigue is one of the early and significant symptoms of pregnancy. It can be characterized by the extreme feeling of tiredness, beyond the usual feelings of exhaustion, or being sleep-deprived.
You may feel like you're run-down or too exhausted to even get out of the bed in the morning.
Why do I feel tired during pregnancy?
There are a few factors that can cause fatigue during pregnancy. It can occur
in the first and third trimester, as well as throughout an entire pregnancy.
First-trimester acceleration in growth:
When you become pregnant, your body also propels into overdrive. It's necessary as it helps the baby to grow, aids your muscles and joints to prepare for birth, increase the blood supply and everything else required for a safe pregnancy. However, this lessens by the fourth month when there is a steadiness in the growth of the baby.
Third-trimester preparations for birth:
When you enter the third trimester of pregnancy, your body goes into overdrive once again, getting your body ready for the impending birth.
It's also the time when your body strains to carry the extra weight of your baby, creating troubles in sleeping. Also, you may not be able to move as much as you were in the beginning due to the extra weight you're carrying.
Things that make pregnancy fatigue worse:
Anemia: Anemia occurs as a response of your body to a lack of iron. Iron is one of the most vital nutrients in pregnancy. It helps to maintain the baby's blood supply and increases your blood volume as well. A decrease in the levels of iron in the body can give rise to anemia. The side-effects of anemia include dizziness, fatigue, and fainting.
Thyroid: The thyroid is a gland that controls the thyroid hormone, thyroxine, which is necessary for regulating the metabolism in the body. A low level of this hormone can make you tired, and too much of this hormone can also cause fatigue, insomnia, and much more.
Insufficient exercise or excessive: If you procrastinate to exercise or put efforts than usual during pregnancy, it can worsen the effects of fatigue.
Looking after other children: If this is not your first pregnancy, and you’re looking after your other children meanwhile taking care of your pregnant self, it may make you feel even more tired.
Dietary remedies to help fight fatigue:
It's way too easy for pregnant women to indulge in binge eating and not taking proper nutrition. Although you may be eating for two, you need only extra 300 calories to help support the growth of the baby.
Here are the dietary remedies that can help you deal with fatigue during pregnancy
Take your prenatal vitamins daily:
Taking prenatal vitamins daily can ensure supplementation of vital vitamins and minerals in our body that we may not get from foods. And as we know that lack of vitamins or minerals during pregnancy, such as iron, can cause fatigue.
Excessive sugar and carbs:
Consuming sugars and carbohydrates in excess is not a good idea, especially when you're pregnant and should be taking more care of your health. Sugar and Carbs contain no nutritional values, as well as cause weight gain. Then, focus on complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains or fresh veggies/fruits. Food like these can help fight constipation and nausea.
Consume enough H2O:
It's important for pregnant women to stay hydrated. Keep drinking water throughout the day to feel refreshed. Strive for about 64oz of water daily, which is equal to drinking about 8oz glasses.
Steer clear of caffeine:
Pregnant women need to stay cautious of the amount they consume in the form of caffeine. Excessive consumption of caffeine has been often linked to miscarriage. However, you can have at least two cups of coffee a day.
So, how does caffeine affect fatigue? Excessive consumption of caffeine can have a potential effect on feelings of fatigue in a few ways: because of its withdrawal symptoms, by decreasing the intake of body's fluids (acts like a diuretic), by lowering the level of iron, and by keeping your eyes wide open when you should be sleeping.
Here are a few more ways to fight fatigue during pregnancy:
Rest whenever you get the time.
Get some help with work or housework.
Get out of your house and take some fresh air.
Try keeping your evening free from activities.
Go to your bed early.
Try sleeping in different positions.
Keep your sleeping area clean.
During pregnancy, fatigue may not be avoidable, but using the tips mentioned above can for sure reduce its effects on your pregnancy.
Note: If you feel that your fatigue is beyond what is normal for pregnancy, consult your doctor who may assess you anemia or thyroid issues.