Pregnancy – The 1st Trimester
The time has come – your pregnancy test is positive! This means that until the end of the third month of pregnancy, you have entered the first trimester. It is common to feel uncertainty, anticipation, shock and/or confusion. One thing is certain: you are about to embark on a new adventure full of change. During the first trimester, changes are few and small, but the next few months and years will impact your entire life provided, of course, that you choose to continue with the pregnancy. You are creating a life!
In the beginning, you probably won’t notice much of a physical change. However, some women will already sense a change in smell, increased fatigue, a tugging in the abdomen or swollen breasts. If she didn’t know any better, she might think it was PMS.
After some time, the well-known morning sickness kicks in which in many cases can last the whole day. A weak feeling in the stomach is common, along with a small appetite or even full-blown nausea and vomiting may occur. Keep in mind that many pregnant women have different experience with symptoms. What all women have in common is the huge hormonal and emotional conversions.
There is nothing else like the process and changes of pregnancy. The hormones completely change in balance to become an incubation vessel to preserve and nourish a new life. This intense and quick change can often times take a toll on the body while a new balance becomes established.
What’s happening in the body
In the first trimester, the fertilized ovum nests in the uterine lining. The mucosa changes and the placenta, which supplies the embryo with nutrients during pregnancy, is formed. The pregnancy hormone, HCG, increases and a rapid rate and it is what is suspected to cause nausea.
The altered hormonal balance ensures that no further ovulation occurs and the uterus is well supplied with blood to increase with the baby’s size. The embryo develops rapidly – within the first 12 weeks, the fertilized egg becomes a small human of about six to eight centimeters. At the end of the first trimester, all of the organs have developed, the heart beats and the limbs are fully formed. Then the child will continue to grow and mature his or her organs.
What helps with the change
The body needs a lot of rest in the first 3 months to adapt to the physical changes. Many women have an increased need for sleep and lie down during the day more often than usual. Of course, a healthy diet with the freshest, best-quality produce is important. This ensures that mother and embryo are well-nourished and cared for. It should also drink enough water (from glass bottles) – this is also a good habit for the entire pregnancy. While the blood volume increases, pregnant women often experience heavy sweating and can also easily develop a urinary tract infection. Another common condition during pregnancy is constipation, so being aware of diet, like staying low on fiber and enjoying tea, to keep a regular motility is key!
Medicinal herbs in the 1st trimester
Some expectant mothers have a pleasant first trimester where they actually don’t feel much change happening in their bodies. Physique and age can be influencing factors but are not always the case. More often than not, it depends on hormonal balance, gut health and stress levels. Every woman experiences pregnancy differently and many women report this is true even during a second or third pregnancy – not because of the child but because of her hormones and often times stress levels (especially because the second and third pregnancy will be much more familiar and relieve any “first-timer” stress).
All who suffer from any symptom during the first trimester can rest easy: There are many ways to soothe yourself with naturopathic ways!
The emotional stress and change should also not go unsaid or unconsidered. Whether a woman was expecting children or not, hormonal changes mean that emotions will vary as well. It is very common to feel anxiety, fear, depression, sadness, elation and a whole rollercoaster of emotions. Keep in mind that it is perfectly normal for pregnant women to feel insecure and to expect a range of different moods. Don’t beat yourself up on this one and it can be helpful to seek counsel from friends, loved ones, other pregnant women or even a professional.
What to do?
We at FEMNA Health have developed a tea that gently accompanies this period of transition in the first trimester. The Easy Queezy Belly Tea supports the body and support psyche with herbs that encourage hormonal balance and soothe most common complaints during the first trimester: morning sickness, loss of appetite, sensitive breasts, mood swings.
Our mix contains well-tried female herbs such as lady’s mantle and yarrow. These support the hormone progesterone, which is crucial for the maintenance of pregnancy. With their harmonizing hormonal effects, they have been reported to help with nausea and vomiting. Peppermint and fennel soothe the abdomen with their essential oils that are antispasmodic and soothing. Lime blossom and lemon balm provide confidence and serenity in this turbulent time.
A wonderful help while on-the-go or whenever your sense of smell is strong is our Fresh Morning Roll On. With a soothing blend of the essential oils mint, lemon, ginger and cardamom, this roll-on soothes the stomach and masks unwanted smells. The aroma of this roll-on is pleasant and refreshing to be used at onset of nausea, even several times a day – just roll on the wrists and temples and inhale.