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Third Trimester Nausea: Causes, Remedies, and Relief

Third Trimester Nausea

The pregnancy journey is often a roller coaster ride with ups and downs. While the first trimester is notorious for morning sickness, many expectant mothers assume nausea will fade away in the second trimester. However, for some women, the unwelcome companion of nausea persists into the third trimester. This comprehensive guide will delve into the causes, remedies, and relief strategies for third-trimester nausea, shedding light on this lesser-known aspect of pregnancy.

Understanding the Third Trimester

Before we dive into the specifics of third-trimester nausea, let’s briefly recap what the third trimester entails. The third trimester represents the concluding phase of pregnancy, spanning from the 28th week until delivery, typically around week 40. During this period, the baby undergoes significant growth and development, making it a critical phase of pregnancy. Unfortunately, it can also be a challenging phase for many women due to the persistence of symptoms like nausea.

Causes of Third Trimester Nausea

Understanding the underlying causes of third-trimester nausea is crucial for effectively managing it. While some of these causes are similar to those in the earlier stages of pregnancy, unique factors contribute to nausea during the third trimester.

Hormonal Changes

Hormones play a pivotal role in pregnancy, and their fluctuations can lead to nausea at any stage. In the third trimester, the hormone progesterone continues to rise, relaxing the muscles in the gastrointestinal tract. This relaxation can slow down digestion, leading to nausea and even heartburn.

Increased Pressure on Organs

As the baby grows in the third trimester, the uterus expands, increasing pressure on nearby organs such as the stomach. This compression can disrupt the stomach’s normal functioning and contribute to feelings of nausea.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Pre-existing gastrointestinal issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can worsen during pregnancy. These conditions can lead to nausea and discomfort, especially in the third trimester.

Emotional Stress and Anxiety

The third trimester is a time of anticipation and, often, heightened anxiety about labor and delivery. Emotional stress and anxiety can trigger nausea in some expectant mothers.

Diet and Nutrition

Dietary choices become increasingly important during pregnancy. Poor eating habits, including spicy or greasy foods, can exacerbate nausea in the third trimester.

Remedies for Third Trimester Nausea

Now that we’ve explored the causes of third trimester nausea, let’s discuss effective remedies to alleviate this discomfort.

Eat Smaller, Frequent Meals

Instead of three large meals, opt for several small meals throughout the day. It can help prevent your stomach from becoming too full and minimize the chances of nausea.

Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can worsen nausea. Ensure you’re drinking enough water throughout the day. Sipping on ginger tea or clear broths can also help soothe your stomach.


Ginger has a well-established reputation for alleviating nausea. To ease nausea, try ginger candies, ginger ale, or ginger tea. Consult your healthcare provider for safe ginger consumption during pregnancy.

Avoid Trigger Foods

Identify foods that trigger your nausea and avoid them. Spicy, greasy, and overly-rich foods are common culprits. Opt for bland, easily digestible options.

Use Aromatherapy

Certain scents, like lemon and peppermint, are known for their anti-nausea effects. Aromatherapy using essential oils or simply sniffing a fresh lemon can help reduce nausea.

Acupressure Bands

Wristbands designed for acupressure, often for motion sickness, can effectively relieve pregnancy-related nausea.


If nausea becomes severe and unmanageable, consult your healthcare provider. They may prescribe safe medications to alleviate your symptoms.

Coping with Third Trimester Nausea

In addition to remedies, there are coping strategies that can help you manage third-trimester nausea on a day-to-day basis.

Rest and Sleep

Fatigue can exacerbate nausea, so prioritize rest and sleep. Take short naps during the day if needed, and ensure you get enough nighttime sleep.

Stress Management

Participate in relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, or prenatal yoga as practical strategies to combat stress and anxiety, which can potentially contribute to the onset of nausea.

Support System

Lean on your support system, whether it’s your partner, family, or friends. Expressing your emotions and discussing your concerns can help reduce emotional tension.

Prenatal Care

Regular prenatal check-ups are essential during the third trimester. Discuss your nausea with your healthcare provider, as they can offer tailored advice and monitor your overall health.

When to Seek Medical Help

While third trimester nausea is generally considered a normal part of pregnancy, there are situations where you should seek medical attention promptly:

Severe or Prolonged Nausea

Contact your healthcare provider promptly if your nausea is severe, long-lasting, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms.

  • Dehydration: Signs of dehydration, including dark urine, dry mouth, and dizziness, should not be ignored. Seek medical help if you suspect dehydration.
  • Weight Loss: Excessive weight loss during pregnancy due to persistent nausea requires medical evaluation.
  • Decreased Fetal Movement: If you observe a decrease in your baby’s movements, it is crucial to contact your healthcare provider promptly. Nausea should not be a reason for reduced fetal activity.


Third trimester nausea is a challenging but manageable aspect of pregnancy. Understanding its causes, implementing remedies, and adopting coping strategies can help you navigate this phase more comfortably and confidently. Remember that every pregnancy is distinct, so it’s crucial to customize your approach to suit your requirements. Contact your healthcare provider for advice and assistance, ensuring a smoother and more comfortable path as you prepare to welcome your cherished little one.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Third-trimester nausea is a common pregnancy symptom. While it can be uncomfortable, it’s usually considered normal as long as it doesn’t lead to severe dehydration or excessive weight loss. Always consult your healthcare provider if your concerns or the nausea is unusually severe.

It’s best to consult your healthcare provider before taking any medications, even over-the-counter ones, during pregnancy. They can recommend safe options and ensure they won’t harm you or your baby.

Bland, easily digestible foods like crackers, toast, and rice can often provide relief. Ginger, in various forms, is also known to help. However, individual reactions vary, so finding what works best for you is essential.

While some women experience nausea as a sign of impending labor, it’s not a reliable indicator. Other labor signs, like contractions and cervical changes, are more conclusive. Nausea in the third trimester is often attributed to the physical changes of pregnancy rather than labor itself.

Whether or not you can continue working during the third trimester with severe nausea depends on your circumstances and the nature of your job. Some women find it manageable with accommodations, while others may need a leave of absence. Discussing your situation with your healthcare provider and employer is crucial to making the best decision for your health and well-being.

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