Fatigue During Pregnancy

What percent of women get Fatigue during pregnancy?

It is estimated that more than 50% of all pregnant women report this symptom. All you want to do is lie down on a floor (anywhere) and just sleep. Most of you will feel fatigue during pregnancy, especially during early and late pregnancy. At these times, your body is producing new hormones and making a lot of changes to prepare for the hard work ahead which is exhausting (creating a human being takes a lot of work!).

Feel like you have no energy while pregnant?

During early pregnancy, your body is in a hormonal free for all, which causes the production of more progesterone. This can make you feel sluggish and sleepy. You’re producing more blood to carry nutrients to the baby causing more effort for your heart and other organs. All of these changes create extra effort for your body and may lead to fatigue. Mental and emotional stress can be added to the list of reasons you may be feeling fatigued.

As you get further along in your pregnancy, you may have difficulty sleeping. You may wake often to use the bathroom and leg cramps and heartburn may cause sleep disruptions.

But while it’s normal to be tired, fatigue can be a symptom of anemia, particularly iron-deficiency anemia. Iron-deficiency anemia affects about 50% of all pregnant women. Your body needs iron to make hemoglobin, the substance in red blood cells that enables them to carry oxygen where needed. According to ACOG (American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology), your iron requirement doubles during pregnancy. This is because of the needs of the baby, the increase in blood produced by your body, and the blood loss that occurs during delivery.

You should get 27 mg of iron daily. Most prenatal vitamins contain enough iron to support this requirement but you can also eat iron-rich foods. These include red meat, poultry, fish, dried beans and peas, iron-fortified cereals and prune juice. Iron can be absorbed more easily if iron-rich foods are eaten with vitamin C- rich foods, like citrus fruits and tomatoes.

How Can You Avoid or Treat Fatigue During Pregnancy?

To reduce lack of energy and pregnancy fatigue:

  • If possible, take naps. Also get up and walk around to get yourself moving!
  • Go to bed early, mama!
  • Drink earlier in the day to reduce chances of waking up and avoid drinking at least 2 hours before bed.
  • Don’t eat food right before bed to minimize nighttime heartburn.
  • Stretch your leg muscles before bedtime to avoid leg cramps. Be sure to include potassium rich foods, like bananas, peaches, kiwis, potatoes and leafy greens in your diet on a daily basis.
  • Exercise, unless your health care provider has advised against it. It can improve your mood and energy level! And is.just plain ole good for you.
  • Eat every 3-4 hours and include carbohydrates, protein, and fat in every meal and snack.
  • Stick to high fiber carbohydrates (whole grains, starchy vegetables, fruit) and minimize sweets and refined grains.
  • Avoid caffeine in the afternoon.
  • Drink plenty of fluids including water and Boost It Up!™ caffeine free protein energy drink
  • Reduce stress. Ok, not so easy to do, but do spend time on things that you find relaxing. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you are overstressed. Talk to your healthcare provider for resources- even meditate!

Fatigue during pregnancy is normal, especially during the first and third trimesters. While symptoms tend to improve during the second trimester, some women feel tired throughout their entire pregnancy. Talk to your health care provider if you feel sudden fatigue, fatigue that doesn’t go away with adequate rest or severe fatigue a few weeks into your second trimester.

Safe Solutions For Pregnancy Aches and Pain

What NOT to take while Pregnant and Nursing:

  • Ibuprofen
  • Naproxen sodium
  • Aspirin

Consult your healthcare provider prior to taking any medication while pregnant or nursing.
Always follow the directions on the package

*No medication is considered 100% safe during pregnancy and nursing