If you’ve ever been pregnant, you’ve probably experienced some form of morning sickness. I’ve only had one friend who never experienced a hint of morning sickness. Otherwise, all of my sisters, cousins, and friends have been afflicted with morning sickness to some degree. It’s been hypothesized that morning sickness protects the embryo by causing pregnant women to physically expel and subsequently avoid foods that contain teratogenic and abortifacient chemicals, especially toxic chemicals in strong-tasting vegetables, caffeinated beverages, and alcohol.

Despite numerous different hypotheses, no one actually knows for sure what causes morning sickness. However, there is one type of morning sickness that some women are more prone to develop and it’s called Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG). It affects about 2% of all pregnant women and is characterized by intense nausea and vomiting and it can start early in the first trimester and last until birth.

In February 2013, researchers presented new material for preemptive treatment of HG at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine's annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting, in San Francisco, California. For many women, Diclectin is the medication prescribed when signs of HG appear. However, it has little effect on the symptoms.

Researchers discovered that by using the drug when pregnancy is first discovered, the frequency of nausea and vomiting were drastically reduced. The study used 59 women who were known to have had HG during previous pregnancies. Since 75-85% of women who develop HG in their first pregnancy experience it in subsequent pregnancies, it was likely that a majority of the women would be eligible for the study. The women were split into two groups. One was given Diclectin from the time the pregnancy was discovered, the second group start Diclectin when their symptoms began. The women who had preemptive treatment experienced a significant decrease in the risk of severe nausea and vomiting.
For regular morning sickness, obstetricians and midwives recommend eating small meals and snacks throughout the day instead of larger meals. Also, try to avoid lying down after eating and try to get up slowly after waking up. Other dietary advice recommends avoiding fatty foods and trying to eat colder foods. Unfortunately, there is no cure for morning sickness. If your symptoms become severe and nothing works to ease them, then make an appointment with your doctor since severe nausea and vomited can eventually have other adverse effects.

Source: Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (2013, February 11). Preemptive treatment of severe morning sickness decreases suffering for moms-to-be. ScienceDaily.