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Hooray, you’re pregnant! Most moms and expecting parents are basking in the joy of expecting their first baby, that is, until the WEIRD side effects of pregnancy hit!
Don’t worry, they’re not all ‘bad’ per se, but some of them are flat out WEIRD!
And the crazy part is, even though these symptoms feel so weird, they’re usually perfectly normal! Isn’t pregnancy aka growing a human inside your body just wild?!
As usual, I do want to make it clear that I am no doctor or medical professional. So, if you’re having any medical concerns throughout your pregnancy, you should really talk to your medical provider.
What are some weird side effects of pregnancy and how do I deal with them?!
As I mentioned above, this post is going to be diving into the WEIRD pregnancy side effects.
But instead of just telling you what they are, I’ve done a little research to help you find some relief plus learn more about them through other sources (outside of my personal experience).
AND – if you haven’t yet found a pregnancy planner to help you keep track of each trimester, along with all the weird symptoms (in case you need to relay the info to your doctor because you might find yourself being more forgetful #mombrain) — I’d highly suggest the Lovely Momhood Pregnancy Planner! It’s affordable, it’ll keep your organized & help cherish each memory along the way!
1. Having a stuffy nose during pregnancy (for what seems like ALL THE TIME)
According to What To Expect (when expecting), approximately 65% of women deal with a stuffy or blocked nose during pregnancy.
Thanks to the magical pregnancy hormones flowing through your body (estrogen & progesterone), you will experience an increase in blood volume AND blood flow throughout your body!
And well, your nose is apart of your body. Inside your nose, you have mucous membranes that get swollen, leading to more mucous production that gets stuck in your nose!
You might even notice you get nose bleeds more frequently and even a runny nose often as well.
What’s a girl to do when her nose is so stuffy or bleeding?
>>> For starters, you could start by keeping a humidifier in your room to keep the air nice, warm and moist. This can help to open up those passageways and keep them clear.
>>> Another thing you could try is talking to your doctor about using OTC medication for relief if your symptoms become really bad. When I was pregnant, I found using the NeilMed Sinus Rinse helped tremendously! I’d use it a couple of times a week (with my OB’s approval) and it helped to relieve the stuffy nose AND limit the nose bleeds.
2. You might develop constipation and urinary incontinence during your pregnancy.
Maybe this one isn’t so much ‘weird’ as it is just flat out annoying and uncomfortable.
So why exactly do these things occur?
Well, like always, your pregnancy hormones are off shifting many things in your body. Including your bowel movements!
As for the incontinence, well you’re basically growing a baby RIGHT up against your bladder. As baby gets bigger, the pressure on your bladder goes up, up up!
How can I deal with constipation and urinary incontinence during my pregnancy?
For constipation you may find the following things can help:
>>> Eating high fiber foods such as vegetables, whole grain cereals, lentils, and fruit!
>>> Drinking lots of fluid to maintain hydration.
>>> Ask your doctor about OTC support if the above isn’t helping, they may recommend adding in an additional fiber or iron supplement to help you move things along more regularly.
For incontinence you may find the following things can help:
>>> Upping the Kegels! Strengthening your pelvic floor before, during, and after pregnancy can have tremendous benefits! Due to the extra weight & pressure your pelvic floor is having to support, strengthening it is so important! Plus, it can help you have a smoother recovery postpartum.
**One small note about pelvic floor exercises. You can find free online pelvic floor videos and exercises to try at home, but I highly suggest using an online program, like the one from The Tummy Team. It was made by professionals to thoroughly help expecting moms strengthen their core and pelvic floor BEFORE birth!
>>> Try drinking smaller bouts of water throughout the day to prevent your bladder from becoming overly full for long periods of time,
>>> If nothing has helped despite trying pelvic floor exercises and/or using the restroom frequently, it’s best to discuss these concerns with your doctor.
3. You have become a LOUD snoring machine!
I won’t lie, I was SO surprised by this one. I literally woke myself up snoring SO loudly one time. I was in shock being that I’m not someone who normally snores.
Needless to say, my husband wasn’t so thrilled with this new pregnancy side effect, though we look back and laugh at it now.
So, why am I all of a sudden snoring when I sleep?
Snoring during pregnancy is pretty common as I learned. In fact, it can affect 1 in 3 pregnancy women! (Source)
As you learned earlier, pregnancy hormones can cause a stuffy nose (and swollen mucous membranes). Typically when you lie down, those airways become more impacted and can lead to snoring.
Can I get rid of snoring during my pregnancy?
Unfortunately, a lot of women aren’t able to fully get rid of snoring until after their baby is born, but you can try these things to see if they help!
>>> Sleep with a humidifier as mentioned above to try and help keep those airways moist and open.
>>> Try using a nasal strip at bedtime, like these ones.
>>> Sleep on your left side for the BEST circulation. (Sleeping on the right side or your back during later pregnancy isn’t always recommended)
>>> Try sleeping with your head or upper body more elevated.
4. Feeling hot ALL the time and experiencing hot flashes while pregnant
Ugh, I remember feeling SO hot all the time. It could be 65 degrees in our room and I’m sitting here burning up! Crazy right?
So why exactly are you always hot while pregnant?
The amount of the blood circulating through your body increases by up to 50%, according to The Bump.
This then leads to all that blood circulating and warming up the skin making you feel warm and well pretty much hot most of the time.
How to keep cool during pregnancy?
The good news is once your baby is born, your always hot feeling should go away.
In the meantime, try the following:
>>> Wearing thin layers to bed to stay cool.
>>> Sleeping with a fan on to keep the air circulating.
>>> Sipping on cold liquids throughout the day to keep cool & refreshed.
5. Looking up remedies for swollen feet during pregnancy
The swelling hit me hard. I actually never realized how common of a ‘thing’ it was until I went through it myself.
Let me just say, my feet didn’t look like feet at all.
They looked like balloons with little dots for toes. It was embarrassing to say the least.
Why does it happen?
Simply thanks to all those extra bodily fluids floating around in your body. It is important to know that sometimes swelling of the hands or face can be a sign of preeclampsia, so you should always contact your doctor if you have any concerns with swelling.
Ways to combat swollen feet during pregnancy:
>>> Try using compression socks, unfortunately, it didn’t work for me, but I have a ton of mama friends who swear by them.
>>> Elevating your feet while sitting down.
>>> Avoid sitting or standing for prolonged periods of time.
>>> Stretch your legs and ask your partner for a foot massage to try and help decompress some of the built-up edema in your feet/legs.
6. Bleeding gums throughout your pregnancy.
Yikes, this one ain’t cute ladies. And yes, I did experience this one too.
Why the heck are your gums bleeding all the time?
In case you didn’t already guess, it’s due to all the extra blood and hormonal changes your body is going through. In fact pregnancy gingivitis as it’s known, is actually pretty common (surprise surprise, right?).
What should I do when dealing with pregnancy gingivitis?
It’s SO important during this time to maintain your oral hygiene. Despite the fact that it’s common, it doesn’t mean you should start slacking on your brushing or flossing routine any time too soon.
In fact, you can use these tips below to help.
>>> Make an appointment with your dentist ASAP to make sure your teeth are A-Ok.
>>> Brush your teeth twice daily, morning and night.
>>> Contact your dentist or doctor if your gum swelling and bleeding become severe.
7. Experiencing heart palpitations during pregnancy
Let’s start off by understanding what a heart palpitation is. A heart palpitation is the feeling like your heart is beating extremely fast, fluttering or skipping a beat.
Believe it or not, your heart IS working harder and beating faster throughout pregnancy.
The key is, that it isn’t actually racing or fluttering per se.
However, in some rare occurrences, frequent heart palpitations can be indicative of a cardiac condition, so if you ever have concerns, you should always run these symptoms by your doctor.
How to deal with heart palpitations during pregnancy?
There really isn’t too much you can do to prevent heart palpitations, however, you can try these things to see if it brings you any relief.
>>> Try to limit or avoid stress and anxiety.
>>> Hold off on the caffeine as it can lead to an increased heart rate.
>>> Relax. Don’t forget, your body is very busy making a baby. Finding time to unwind and relax when needed can be extremely beneficial for your body.
8. Swollen nipples like you never imagined!
Yes, girl, I’m not playing. Whether you choose to breastfeed your baby or not, your nipples are here for the baby.
I know, it can be a bit of a shocker, it was for me too, but don’t worry, it won’t last forever!
Why are there so many changes to the areolas during pregnancy?
Without sounding like a broken record, you can thank your pregnancy hormones yet again.
You’ll likely notice them get darker in color AND get much larger. Some have said it’s to help baby find the nipple when learning to breastfeed.
As I mentioned before, the good part is that after breastfeeding is through, you should see them return to normal in no time.
How to deal with your new breasts.
Well, mama, this may be the ONE weird symptom of pregnancy that has no way to change.
However, you can try to learn to love your new body as it grows your baby & prepares to bring a beautiful gift into this world.
Well mama, there you have it. A full breakdown of some truly weird side effects of pregnancy. If it makes you feel any better, just know you are NOT experiencing these things alone.
I know I felt a bit isolated going through all these changes, but knowing there are other moms out there dealing with the same things can bring some bit of comfort.
If you’re wondering what the heck kind of weird things LABOR will bring on… well I’d suggest taking the birthing class my friend Liesel, who’s a Labor & Delivery RN created to make sure ALL moms are prepared for Birth AND Beyond!
♥ Related pregnancy posts FOR YOU:
>>> How to prepare for a new baby on a budget.
>>>What baby products should be on the baby registry.
>>> Tips to prepare for labor from an L&D Nurse!