When Does Morning Sickness Start?

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At the beginning of your pregnancy, you’ll have many questions for your doctor, your friends with kids, and Google. Morning sickness is probably on your list too. Dr. Karla Maguire, obstetrics and gynecology expert at the University of Miami Health System, is here with straight forward answers — and nausea remedies — to put your mind at ease.

Morning sickness (the experience of nausea or vomiting associated with the early stages of pregnancy) can hit you at any time of day. Still it typically starts around the sixth week of pregnancy. To determine your date of conception, begin counting from the day your last menstrual period started. Then confirm the date with an ultrasound at your OBGYN’s office.

Morning sickness doesn’t begin earlier than six weeks, says Dr. Maguire, because pregnancy hormones usually aren’t high enough at that stage. While it can be distressing and bothersome, morning sickness isn’t bad for your body nor dangerous for your baby. “It can actually be a reassuring sign that your pregnancy hormones are still elevated,” Dr. Maguire says. “But if you don’t experience morning sickness at all, it doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your pregnancy.”

How do I reduce nausea during pregnancy?

If morning sickness is affecting your quality of life, “there’s no need to suffer,” she says. “There are a lot of safe prescription medications you can try for morning sickness, and you can speak to your physician about them.”

You can also try these drug-free remedies:

  • Eat ginger.
  • Wear wrist bands designed to apply gentle pressure.
  • Eat small meals often.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Drink a before or after a meal, but not with meals.
  • Drink small amounts of fluids during the day.
  • Eat soda crackers 15 minutes before getting up in the morning.
  • Eat whenever you feel like you can stomach it.
  • Avoid cooking your own food.
  • Get fresh air or rest near a fan.
  • Avoid warm places.
  • Sniff lemons or ginger.
  • Drink lemonade or eat watermelon.
  • Eat salty potato chips.
  • Engage in light to moderate exercise.
  • Avoid skipping meals.
  • Don’t eat spicy food.

“Talk to your doctor,” says Dr. Maguire. “We have ways to help.”

Keep in mind that morning sickness generally lasts through 12 to 13 weeks of pregnancy. Then, women say they tend to feel much better.


Dana Kantrowitz is a contributing writer for UMiami Health News.

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