Health Topics

Morning sickness

Morning sickness

Morning sickness is common during pregnancy. Even though it is called "morning sickness," it can happen any time of the day or night.  Some of the symptoms you may experience include:

  • Nausea and/or vomiting.
  • Decreased appetite.
  • Being bothered by certain smells.
  • Fatigue and drowsiness.
  • Possible weight loss.

Preventing morning sickness
To help with the symptoms of morning sickness, try the following:

  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Drink water before and after meals.
  • Take naps.
  • At your home and work space, try to remove scents that make you nauseous.
  • Avoid spicy foods.
  • Eat small meals.
  • Avoid fatty foods.
  • Take vitamins at night.
  • Avoid cigarette smoke.

Talk to your health care provider if none of these help, or if you experience morning sickness beyond the first 3 to 4 months of your pregnancy.  For the health of your baby, ALWAYS talk to your health care provider BEFORE starting any medications or alternative remedies to help with morning sickness.

Possible complications
Nausea and vomiting can easily cause a loss of appetite. Many pregnant women worry that this will harm their babies.  Mild morning sickness is generally not harmful.  Morning sickness is usually not severe enough to impact fetal growth and development. For some pregnant women, nausea causes them to experience severe vomiting and weight loss.  This condition is called hyperemesis gravidarum. It causes electrolyte imbalances and unintentional weight loss. If left untreated, this condition may eventually harm your baby.


Call your doctor immediately if you experience:

  • Inability to keep food down
  • Weight loss of 2 pounds or more
  • Fever
  • Infrequent urination with small quantities of dark-colored urine
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Severe nausea within the second trimester
  • Blood in your vomit
  • Frequent headaches
  • Abdominal pain
  • Spotting, or bleeding


Severe bouts of morning sickness generally require hospitalization.  Hyperemesis gravidarum often requires intravenous (IV) fluids for rehydration.  Morning sickness usually happens within the first four months of pregnancy. There are various ways to help with morning sickness, and it does not usually cause complications.