Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) may sound absolutely foreign to you, though it may affect one in 100 women, according to the UK’s National Health Service. It is a lesser known illness amongst pregnant women, however it would be useful to learn some facts of the condition and what you can do about it if you are suffering from it:
- It is a severe form of morning sickness and there is no cure for it, only ways to manage it. You will find yourself vomiting a lot, leading to problems such as dehydration and weight loss. Morning sickness often fades off after the first trimester, but HG usually lasts longer. The vomiting gets so severe that it may affect a woman’s daily activities.
- HG can affect your weight, curbing you from gaining weight during pregnancy, and you may lose up to 5% of your normal weight. It can also affect your mineral balance – you may have lower levels of minerals such as electrolytes, sodium and potassium. When you do not have enough of these minerals, it can cause dizziness, weakness and change in blood pressure. It also affects your muscles because malnutrition, electrolyte imbalance and the need for bed rest can weaken your muscles.
- Factors that could increase your risk for HG include: having a history of HG, being pregnant with more than one baby, being overweight, and being a first-time mom. Trophoblastic disease, which is a condition when there is an abnormal growth of cells inside the uterus, can cause HG too.
- HG’s home remedies include eating smaller and more frequent meals, taking vitamin B6 supplements and ginger/ginger supplements, as well as hydrating yourself. If you need to be hospitalised, drugs to prevent vomiting will be administered through an IV drip.
- HG can be very dangerous because if a mother’s condition worsens till she suffers severe malnourishment and dehydration, it may lead to pregnancy complications or even a miscarriage.
Remember to take good care of yourself during pregnancy and seek help early if you suspect that you are suffering from HG!