One of the first signs of pregnancy is extreme exhaustion and all but a few pregnant women experience it. Fatigue is common and normal, and the feeling starts soon after conception in some women and continues well into the first trimester.
For most women the second trimester is relatively uneventful but the last three months can throw you off gear again. However, it is important to add here that in case you continue to feel exhausted and are worried, you must speak to your gynaecologist, especially if you are also feeling weak and giddy.
What causes fatigue during pregnancy? Blame it on the changing and surging hormone levels in your body. The spike in progesterone makes you tired. Add it to the nausea you are experiencing (though it is called morning sickness, it can strike at any time of day or night) which can create food aversions, the changes in your body, the energy you are using up in forming your baby and your heightened anxiety, and it’s easy to see why your body demands rest.
Though there is not much you can do to get rid of pregnancy-related fatigue, you can alleviate the discomfort. Follow these tips.
Follow a routine and sleep longer. Make a proper daily schedule of your bedtime, including the time you will wake up. You need to sleep a little more than you used to in your pre-pregnancy days, so do factor in the additional time. Adhere to the schedule.
Take breaks throughout the day. Your baby and your body are your priorities right now; make time to rest often during the day. If possible, intersperse your days with short naps (a nap of a mere 10 minutes each will also do). A shut-eye can make you feel more rested and less sluggish.
Do some exercises. You don’t have to try anything too strenuous, just a short walk or a stroll in the garden or some stretches should be good. The benefit of exercise is that it helps deal with stress, controls your breathing and aids in a good night’s sleep.
Eat a proper balanced diet. While it’s a myth that a pregnant woman should eat for two, you must pay attention to your diet. Avoid junk food and have adequate amounts of proteins, calcium, nutrients. Have small meals a few times a day. A big heavy meal will aggravate your sense of unease and fatigue. And do drink lots of water to keep your body hydrated.