What to take when you can’t medicate?

No wine, alcohol, blue cheese, cured meats, continental cheeses, BBQ chicken, rare meat, mayonnaise, pate, goat’s cheese, fish, coffee, fizzy drinks, oily fish, high dose vitamin A bla bla bla.  You can’t have anything good when pregnant can you?

Pregnancy is filled with annoying little niggles to whopping great pains in the butt (literally!). So if you can’t eat or drink the good stuff, what do you take when you would ordinarily reach for the ibuprofen?

Here are a few of my suggestions for the delights I have experienced!

  • Morning sickness – I’ve blogged about recognising if you have hot or cold morning sickness before, but this is essential when trying to relieve some pretty hellish symptoms.  For the first sixteen weeks (ish) of my pregnancy I suffered with sixteen hour a day nausea.  It’s was horrific.  I realised early on that ginger tea, sweets and biscuits made my life much, much worse!  So I did the opposite and went for cooling things – peppermint tea, mint sweeties really helped with my crippling nausea.  Try it if the traditional remedies aren’t working for you.
  • Headaches to migraines – I’m not sure why no one tells you about this beauty, but it’s perfectly normal to suddenly experience migraines at about eighteen weeks through to the mid twenty weeks.  By this I mean it’s worse than a headache, lasts up to 48hours, can be accompanied by light sensitivity and nausea and vomiting.  Before pregnancy Ive had all of two migraines in my life, I ended up bedridden, unable to do anything.  With pregnancy I suffered from migraines for 48hour periods, having 48hours of being ok followed by 48hours of a migraine on repeat for a good few weeks.  You can take paracetamol when pregnant, however I didn’t and I wouldn’t take any medication whatsoever.  I coped with cool compresses, applying 4 Head (very widely available, comes in a stick and has cooling properties) and applying head cooling strips.  This is one of those things that you have to admit defeat on – close the curtains, lay in a darkened room and try to sleep it off.
  • Burning rib pain – whaaaaaat?  This crept in for me at about 24 weeks.  It’s localised pain, usually at one side and it literally feels like burning.  If you’re experiencing this for the first time and thinking what on earth is this . . . It’s your little bundle of joy!  Your baby is literally kicking or punching you in the ribs!  I’m now 35 weeks and when it’s not the burning pain, it’s the booting sharp agony pain!  My baby is head down with their feet tucked into my ribs!  So what can you do about this one?  Raise the arm on the affected side above your head to create some more space, laying down on your left hand side helps or sitting up straighter, again to try to create some more space!  You can’t take anything for this one, it’s just a fact of pregnancy!
  • Breathlessness – this can happen pretty early, guess what, you’re getting bigger and hulking around a baby, it’s hard work!  It’s tiring and it’s heavy!  You will be breathless.  If it gets worse you might also be showing signs of anemia.  If it’s a real problem get your midwife to do a blood test to check your iron levels.  I’ve found it’s very common to get shoved on additional iron supplements, my iron levels have dropped and I’m on three iron tablets a day!  It’s a slow process building up your iron levels again, but in two weeks or so you should start to feel better.
  • Hip pain – again really common and a problem if like me, it’s your left hand side and you need to sleep on your left.  You could try a pregnancy pillow or popping a normal pillow in between your legs to try to take some pressure off.  A pregnancy pillow didn’t help me, but I have to say the hip pain got better as I got bigger (weird!).  Check with your midwife if you’re getting pelvic pain etc it could be something more serious.

What have you experienced and what did you do help the problem?

My ultimate cure-all by the by is …….. Cake!  Try it!  It really works!

Hello tiny little cake!
Hello tiny little cake!

One thought on “What to take when you can’t medicate?

  1. Fanny Daggers! They normally appear when baby is engaged. They are aptly named as it feels like someone stabbing you “down below”. Pregnancy is so much fun!

    However, it’s not all gloom and doom. Feeling the baby kick is amazing. It always made me smile. It was like having a little secret as no one else knew baby had kicked unless I winced or reacted. It was just us.


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