Whether you are pregnant for the first time or your second or third, pregnancy brings along with it lots of changes in your life.
However well you prepare mentally and physically for your pregnancy, many times you’ll feel as if you’re on a roller coaster ride.
Carrying a baby for nine months is a tough job, and the journey becomes harder when you have to deal with morning sickness, constipation, fatigue, body aches, swollen ankles and sore breasts.
Along with those common pregnancy-related problems, there are several unpleasantries that come with pregnancy that many women are not even aware of and can take a toll on you. Being aware of these problems will help you prepare yourself beforehand.
Here are some of the unpleasant things about pregnancy that you need to know.
1. Heightened Sense of Smell
Many women have a heightened sense of smell during pregnancy. Unfortunately, most say smells that didn’t bother them or were even pleasant before the pregnancy became unpleasant during pregnancy. This can make your life hell.
A 2007 study published in Chemical Senses reports that olfaction is affected more in early pregnancy .
As with other pregnancy-related problems, you can blame those pregnancy hormones again. The increase in estrogen can make every little scent that comes your way feel like an assault on your nostrils.
To deal with a heightened sense of smell, put a few drops of a pregnancy-safe essential oil on a tissue or handkerchief. Sniff the tissue when needed to mask strong smells around you.
2. Excess Gas
Gas is a common and potentially embarrassing symptom of pregnancy for many women. It can be a problem at any time during the nine months.
The hormone progesterone is one of the main causes of excess gas during pregnancy. As your body produces more progesterone to support your pregnancy, the hormone relaxes muscles in your body, including the intestinal muscles.
This can slow down your digestive process and allow gas to build up. This gas can also lead to a feeling of bloating, especially after a large meal.
While you can’t change the way your digestive system works during pregnancy, you can help control the problem to some extent by avoiding trigger foods that lead to gas.
This includes carbonated beverages, dairy products, cruciferous vegetables, garlic, spinach, potatoes, beans and other high-fiber foods.
Also, do light exercises and do not eat too much at once. Eat smaller, more frequent meals.
3. Frequent Bathroom Visits
Needing to urinate often is an unavoidable fact of life for most pregnant women. It can be really embarrassing at times, especially if you are still working or out and about in public places.
You need to use the bathroom more often during pregnancy due to pregnancy hormones, an increase in the amount and speed of blood circulating through your body, and your growing uterus.
The tendency to urinate more starts early in the pregnancy and continues until you give birth to your bundle of joy.
No matter what, do not hold your urine. Go to the bathroom as soon as you feel the need. Waiting can actually weaken your pelvic floor muscles in the long run.
At the same time, avoid drinking coffee, tea and certain carbonated drinks because they are all diuretics, meaning they increase urine production and make you need to pee more often.
4. Extra Hair Growth
Good hair growth on the head during pregnancy looks good, but it’s embarrassing when hair starts growing on other parts of the body.
Hormonal changes during pregnancy may cause thick, long and dark hairs to grow in areas where it normally does not, such as the face, chest, abdomen and arms.
A 2016 study published in Fertility and Sterility has shown that the areas most affected by hirsutism include the upper lip, lower abdomen, lower back and thighs .
To get rid of stray hairs on your body, you can safely tweeze, wax or shave. However, avoid chemicals like bleaches or depilatories, which could be absorbed into the bloodstream.