Early symptom: tiredness

In the early days of pregnancy, tiredness is a common symptom, but not always related entirely to the new hormonal state or growing foetus.

Excessive tiredness in early pregnancy

Tiredness. It is normal for a woman to feel tired at different stages of her pregnancy – and entire life. Some newly pregnant women become extremely fatigued during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.

This can feel ‘never ending’ and unrelenting, and in many cases very frustrating, especially if you can’t find the energy to do everything you want to do. It is not unusual to have 10 or 12 hours sleep, only to get up and still feel lethargic and tired.

As your body adjusts to the enormous metabolic changes that are necessary to grow your baby, the tiredness and fatigue usually subside (around 12 to 14 weeks of pregnancy), bringing renewed energy and vigour.

In some cases, the tiredness may be due to (or made worse by) lifestyle factors. For example, if this is not your first pregnancy, you may feel continually exhausted because you are looking after another child.

It is important to rest whenever possible and listen to your body when you feel you need to slow down. If possible, take a rest and lie down and have early nights.

On weekends have a sleep, or put your feet up during the day. If you can, ask family or friends to take other children for a couple of hours (or perhaps overnight occasionally) so you can rest and ‘sleep in’ the next morning.

Remedies for tiredness in early pregnancy

You may wish to read about stress and relaxation to banish tiredness from pregnancy, the fact is there is very little you can do about tiredness other than change your lifestyle and not schedule in as much activity.

A pregnant woman’s body is working harder than a non-pregnant body is while jogging! After all, your body is making a new life form, creating extra blood flow and going through enormous changes.

Adequate rest, sleep and naps are now a must, not a luxury, so do everything you can to make time for rest. Other things you can do include:

Make sure you eat well as fatigue can be aggravated by an iron deficiency and low blood sugar. It also helps to avoid caffeine and sugary snacks which may give you a temporary boost, but eventually deplete your body.

Gentle exercise can make you feel better.

If fatigue is accompanied by fainting, breathlessness or heart palpitations then it is time to seek some medical attention to check something more serious isn’t going on.

Other early symptoms

You can find out about other signs and symptoms of early pregnancy at the following links:

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