You’ve been trying for a baby for God knows how long. And now, your prayers have been answered. You are excited beyond measure and can now dare dream about motherhood. While this is a milestone for you, it’s imperative to note that being pregnant comes with very many changes in the body. Hormonal levels tend to increase and this causes a lot of discomfort.
Constipation is considered an early sign that you are pregnant. Other symptoms include poor appetite, abdominal pain, nausea, food cravings, frequent urinations, mild cramping, and bloating. As long as you keep vomiting your appetite disappears and you are also bound to be dehydrated if you don’t drink lots of water.
There are various reasons why constipation occurs. One of the reasons for this is that progesterone hormone which is produced when you are pregnant slows down the digestion of food in your body. This in turn causes a buildup and blockage of waste and the end result will be no bowel movement. Constipation is a common occurrence in most pregnant women and should be no cause for alarm. Once the hormonal change is stable constipation disappears but could appear later in your last trimester.
During the final months of your pregnancy – the third trimester, constipation occurs from the pressure of the uterus sitting on the rectum. At this time it is harder to have bowel movement regularly. You need to exercise regularly to help ease the bowel movement.
If you are taking any kind of medication be it iron tablets, pain tablets, or antacids, this may be the cause of your constipation. Iron tablets are prescribed by a health provider and as such it’s instrumental that you consult your doctor on the correct amount to take during pregnancy.
The choice of food you take every day could be the cause of your Constipation during pregnancy. Avoid foods that are not rich in fiber. When you select the type of food to eat make sure it is high in fiber. Foods like fruits and vegetables, whole grain cereals, and bread are very high in fiber. Try and consume at least 40 grams of fiber every day. You should try and pace yourself if you are not used to eating food rich in fiber. Try adding at least one food rich in fiber in whatever you are eating. Eating three whole meals everyday could also be a disadvantage, you should try eating at least six small meals spread out during the day.
Get into the habit of drinking a lot of water throughout the day. Fruit and vegetable juices help in softening the stool and make it easier to pass when the need arises. If you enjoy a glass of yogurt you are encouraged to continue drinking. Yogurt contains cultures that stimulate the intestinal bacteria that easily break down foods thus helping the digestive tract to keep things moving.