At some point in many females’ lives they talk about how much they want to have a baby and how they look forward to being pregnant. Maybe their mothers told them about their “easy” pregnancies, or maybe things like nausea and back pain don’t phase them. The fact of the matter is that women have to endure a lot of stress during their pregnancy. There are some pregnancy ailments we all know about, but have you heard about these five? This is just the tip of the iceberg of things people don’t tell you about pregnancy. However, there’s no need to be scared, and few women experience even half of all possible ailments/issues. Some are even positive changes, so don’t panic!
Restless Legs/Leg Cramps
The first pregnancy ailment that isn’t widely discussed is Restless Leg Syndrome or leg cramps in general. Women who experience this first “symptom” tend to have it at night or when lying down for long periods of time. Roughly 15% of expectant mothers experience Restless Leg Syndrome, typically in the third trimester. Experts aren’t positive what about pregnancy causes the development of RLS, but changing hormone levels, insufficient iron or folic acid, and genetics are widely accepted as causes. Symptoms of Restless Leg Syndrome include:
- Tingling in the legs at night or when lying down
- A feeling that you need to get up and move around to ease symptoms
- Involuntary leg twitching
- General discomfort in the legs
Improved Sense of Smell
Some pregnant women claim that their sense of smell is amazingly improved. Typically, this pregnancy trait is most prevalent and strongest during the first trimester. Experts attribute a heightened sense of smell to an increase in Estrogen. That’s right! As with most pregnancy ailments, hormones are to blame. If you suffer from morning sickness, your keener nose could be to blame. Some smell “attack” an expectant mother’s nose and can increase nausea and headaches. Unfortunately, there’s little that can be done to desensitize your pregnancy nose, but you can easily avoid smells that you find more difficult to stomach. Some smells that are repeatedly listed as unbearable include eggs, cheeses, coffee, perfume/cologne, alcohol, and potent foods. Trust us, you’ll know what smells don’t sit well with you and baby almost as soon as you’re exposed to them!
You May Notice Your Memory Isn’t At It’s Best
Pregnancy brain is very real! It’s not just the woman trying to justify her forgetfulness. Once again, we have hormonal changes to thank for this pregnancy trait, at least partially. Changes in the chemical balance of the brain certainly plays a major role in forgetfulness, but things like lack of quality sleep, excitement and stress about the baby, and lifestyle changes are also contributors. This memory lapse usually only affects short-term memory, and it tends to worsen as the pregnancy progresses. Pregnancy brain is extremely common and is nothing to worry about. Symptoms may continue for a while after birth, but you won’t stay forgetful forever!
You Can Have Cold-Like Symptoms At Any Time (Sometimes the Entire Time!)
When you’re expecting, most things going on in your body are changing and adapting. It’s understandable that priorities shift and chemical/hormone production fluctuates. Pregnant women often complain of symptoms similar to that of common colds. You can develop a cough, congestion, muscle aches, fatigue, chronic feelings of being cold, and more. Of course, you may actually have a cold, but in most cases, it’s just another thing that comes with pregnancy. Over the counter medications can help to manage your symptoms, and they will likely change over the course of your pregnancy. As always, reach out to your PCP or OB/GYN with any questions. Never hesitate to voice your concerns. No doctor expects you to know everything about pregnancy, and they are more than happy to schedule a visit to go over your worries.
You’ll Get Great Hair!
As promised in the intro, there are some positive changes that pregnancy will bring! Many expectant mothers comment that their hair is thicker, shinier, and grows faster! You already know who you can thank for this change; hormones! Specifically, estrogen and androgen. An uptick in these two hormones affects the hair’s growth cycle. You’ll shed less hair per day, resulting in having more on your head at once. Other hair changes include more or less texture, changes in oil levels, and higher shine. Be warned, hair can change on other areas of the body as well including the face, legs, belly, and nipple area. As much as we hate to have to say it, your luscious locks are not forever. Following birth, your hormones will return to normal and the hair will revert to its typical life cycle. For some women, hair loss after delivery can be extreme, but most will just notice more shedding than usual.
Did you know about any of these things that can come from being pregnant? If not, you’re not alone. You’ll be shocked to learn about other pregnancy “ailments” that you can face. If you’re interested in learning more, purchase a copy of “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Pregnancy But Were Too Afraid Or Embarrassed To Ask” by the Twin Drs. You’ll learn about so many aspects of pregnancy that are not widely talked about but that the Twin Drs. feel you should know. You can order a copy here: https://bsyl.ink/Everything-You-Ever-Wanted-To-Know-About-Pregnancy and learn more from the Twin Drs. at https://thetwindoctors.com/.