Feeling tired 24 hours a day is one of the most common side effects of pregnancy. Your body is going into overload to spur the baby's growth: Your ovaries are producing progesterone, which is thought to have a sedative effect, and blood volume is increasing up to 50 percent to supply blood to the fetus.
One hidden culprit for excessive fatigue is anemia. Extra iron is needed to make the baby's blood cells, and if you don't have enough iron, the baby will take what it needs from your body, shortchanging you. Your doctor will give you a blood test during your first prenatal visit to check on your iron stores. If you don't have enough, she's likely to prescribe a supplement.
Other things you can do to combat your tiredness:
Get moving. Even if all you want to do is lie on the couch, take a short walk or just do some light stretching. Twenty minutes a few times a week can give you a lift.
Take your prenatal vitamin. It will fill the gaps if your appetite for food is at an all-time low, and because it contains iron, it can help stave off anemia.
Sleep when you can. Go to bed earlier, get up later, and nap when you can. If you're working all day, take 15 minutes and catnap at your desk.
Even if you're not showing yet, your uterus is growing -- and that's causing pressure on your bladder, which never really empties. Plus, your kidneys are working overtime to flush wastes out of your body. The result: a need to pee often, throughout the day and night.But don't cut back on liquids, and don't wait to urinate -- holding it can cause a urinary tract infection. To reduce the number of nighttime bathroom trips, stop drinking a few hours before bedtime, cut out caffeine at night (it's a bladder stimulant), and go one last time before you turn off the light.
You may break out because your hormones are working overtime, causing your skin to produce more oil. Acne may subside later in your pregnancy, but to help control it now:
Don't scrub or overwash your skin. And use a gentle cleanser like Cetaphil to avoid overdrying it.
Switch to an oil-free moisturizer. There's no reason to add oil to your overly oily skin.
Check the labels of the products you use. Glycolic acid is okay, but ditch those containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, retinols, or steroids: They could potentially cause birth defects.
Pregnant women are actually inhaling deeper, the better to supply all that extra blood with oxygen. Even though you may be getting plenty of air, don't be surprised if you feel breathless, partly because the baby is transferring more carbon dioxide to you.
Low blood sugar (a result of your changing metabolism), increase in hormones, and reduced blood flow to the brain can spell bad headaches for some moms-to-be. If you suffer from headaches, try using a hot or cold compress, massaging your temples, or getting some fresh air. If those don't work, acetaminophen is considered safe for pregnant women. If you're suffering from migraines, talk to your doctor.