Hollywood portrays pregnancy as a time where a woman shines in all her glory, carries a beautiful baby bump, literally oozes of glowing beauty, and 'accidentally' gets that tad bit of paint on her cheeks while painting the perfect nursery. But is that really what the nine month long pregnancy journey is all about?
Unfortunately, that is as far from the truth as it can get. Not only is pregnancy packed full of stress, it's also a woman’s initiation into 40 weeks of embarrassment and awkwardness. Yes, while there may (or may not) be a glowing period, it could be incredibly short. And around this maternal glowing time frame there will be lots of moments where gas is escaping out of some hole, or something is leaking from somewhere.
Fun times for sure!
Yes, all through pregnancy new moms are going to find themselves losing their dignity in front of the world, that too in ways they never thought possible. But do you know what the most interesting part is? It's that this initiation into a world full of embarrassments will definitely come in handy when the baby turns into a toddler who is ever-ready to humiliate mom in public.
While pregnancy is a life-changing experience and a time that cannot be considered anything less than miraculous, the fact of the matter is that no one really warns women about those leaky parts, excess wind and a whole lot more. With that, let's take a look into 15 of the most embarrassing problems moms-to-be will face during pregnancy:
14 Random And Severe Nausea, Oh Boy!
Pregnant women at times suffer from such extreme bouts of nausea that they can start hurling anywhere. If this is the sort of issue that you are dealing with right now, make sure that you find yourself the closest lavatory or waste bin the minute you get a whiff of something that sets you off.
According to research, although around 85% of women have a bit of nausea during pregnancy, some expectant women tend to feel overly queasy around the clock. For the record, the reason behind severe nausea is not known yet, but, experts believe that it is associated with the high levels of pregnancy hormones progesterone and estrogen that are known to hit women the hardest in the first trimester.
There’s no silver bullet that can help all women treat their morning sickness, so you may have to try different things to see what works for you. Before getting out of bed, have something bland and light, like saltines, to control nausea. Sucking on ginger candy may help as well.
13 Itchy Chest And All The Rest
Pregnancy is definitely going to impact your skin pigments, so you should expect itching all over your body. This particularly holds true for your breasts as they continue to enlarge during pregnancy. Although you may feel like a million dollars with that beautiful baby bump on you, the fact of the matter is that you may end up losing every drop of your dignity due to itchy breasts.
Like it or not, you may even find yourself itching them subconsciously.
As the days move forward, the itchiness will increase in intensity and in area. You may find yourself using your wrists to scratch your breasts, or jab a pen down your bra while at work. To stay ahead of the itchiness, it's best for you to wear light, loose and comfortable clothing all through the nine months of pregnancy.
You can also use virgin coconut oil, since it has antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties that will certainly sooth your breasts.
12 And Now A Leaking Chest
The breasts that you have been carrying around for life will now be put to the real test – breastfeeding. One thing that your body needs to work on for the first few weeks after delivery is that of managing the amount of milk required and that which is produced. What you need to know here is that during the first few weeks after delivery, the baby is small and has a very low consumption of milk.
However, since your breasts have recently started lactating, they will produce more milk than required - and this is what will lead to occasional dripping and leaking. To deal with this problem and the embarrassment it will lead to, use padded bras while going outside. You can also press your nipples or fold your arms tightly to hinder the milk production, but don’t use this technique often as it might lead to clogged milk ducts.
11 Incontinence – The Fun Of Leaking Urine
Urinal leakages are common during the second and third trimester. You might get accidental leakage when sneezing or when laughing with a group of friends at a party. The leakage may at times be so intense that it would make you feel like you've emptied your bladder, or it may just be a few drops coming out; in any case it will be an embarrassing situation for sure.
In order to prevent yourself from leaking urine, it is best for you to start doing pelvic floor exercises. This is very simple – you just need to think of yourself stopping yourself from peeing. However, for it to work at the right time, it is necessary for you to perform this as often as possible. You must empty your bladder once every two hours even if you don’t feel the need to pee.
You should also wear panty liners to catch leaks so you don't get embarrassed in front of a crowd. Performing pelvic floor exercises will help you gain control of your leaky bladder while the panty liner will save you on a rainy day.
10 Increased Odor From Embarrassing Places, Cause Why Not?
While you try to hide behind the smelly dog or the sweaty man who just came back from a hard day of labor, the smell is still distinct. You must now realize that its your vaginal discharge that is blocking your senses. Although the vaginal discharge may not change during the course of pregnancy, but your sense of smell definitely will.
However, you can relax knowing that your sensitivity for the specific odor is centered - others will still be comfortable around you.
Just so you know, as long as you test negative for STDs, yeast infection and bacterial infections, it's just your hormones triggering that smell from your vagina. Also, rest-assured that the smell is going to go away once you deliver your precious bundle of joy. However, while it lasts, it is highly recommended for you to always stay clean, dry and try to wear cotton panties.
9 Passing Gas Like It's A Second Job
If anything, pregnancy happens to be one of the most flatulent times in a woman’s life. During those 9 long and hard months, your insides are going to be shoved, softened, squeezed and stepped on by your growing baby. All of this is going to lead to a few digestive problems for sure.
Yes, from time to time, you will produce the sort of foul odors that are going to put Pumba from The Lion King to shame. The worst part is that there is no way you will be able to control the gas or that you will only experience it in private. Your muscles are not going to hold it in, so you can rest-assured that you will drop those bombs all over your workplace, public transport and restaurants.
Just about every pregnant woman out there gets gassy because of a hormonal surge that can slow down their gastrointestinal tract. Because of this, you may not be able to keep ‘things’ to yourself, because pregnancy will make it impossible for you to control your muscles.
Although you can't get rid of this problem completely, you can easily reduce your gassiness with changes to your diet and a bit of exercise. Exercise will make it possible for food to move through faster in your GI tract. Also, avoid foods like broccoli, dried fruits, carbonated drinks and beans that are more likely to produce gas.
8 Getting All Plugged Up With Constipation
Do you find yourself wasting way too much time in the washroom? Well, don't let the shame rule over you as you aren't the only one who has been in there for hours and hours. There are zillions of women trying their hardest to get rid of constipation. Research suggests that most pregnant women, at some point or the other, suffer from constipation.
Right after conception, pregnancy hormones slow down the digestive tract (in an effort to let your body absorb more nutrients), thereby making it harder for even the tiniest of meals to be processed.
Now, there are quite a few things that you can do to give things a better go. To begin with, it is highly recommended for you to have a sound intake of fiber. Apart from that, you should also have lots of fresh fruits, beans, vegetables and grains. Switch to a high-fiber cereal and make sure that you drink as much water as possible.
You can also try drinking prune juice to avoid and treat constipation. Even though you may find it a bit embarrassing to talk to your doctor about constipation, make sure that you do. Consult your specialist and ask if you can take a fiber supplement that is safe during pregnancy.
While you're at it, although constipation is uncomfortable problem, it's necessary for you to bear in mind that it is rarely ever dangerous.
7 Excessively Sweating, Thank You Hormones!
Pregnancy is a time-marked by overheating, breathlessness and increased sweating even when thermostats are turned down. Why is that so? Well, because your blood flow and metabolism rates increase during pregnancy which makes your body sweat even more. For this reason, you are likely to experience sweat patches to the point that they become part of your wardrobe.
Rest-assured that your sweating is going to intensify each time you climb the stairs, or walk briskly to catch the bus. All this sweating is going to have an impact on your personal odor serving as an initiation to embarrassment and awkwardness.
The most embarrassing bit is going to be the ‘sweatstache’ you will be wearing. For those who don’t know, a sweatstache is a mustache made entirely of sweat and can get rather embarrassing. As much as you hate it, there isn't much that you can do about it. What you can do, however, is keep hydrated, try to avoid going out during the day, avoid working out when it's too hot and refrain from hot drinks or spices.
6 Becoming Excessively Hairy, YAY!
Growth hormones are released in abundance in the body during pregnancy. This may lead to fast hair growth on your body - to top it off, it might come in the worst places that you could ever expect. The hair may start to show up beneath your chin and on your sideburns. However, to make you feel a bit better about it all, you will also have hair growing on your scalp, so you're going to have a head full!
Now, to deal with the excessive hair growth, there's a good chance that you will have to purchase good quality wax strips. Normally, if your hair grows one month after waxing, expect them a little earlier now that you're pregnant. As mentioned previously, the gushes of sweat and heat will possess your body, as well as the extra hair growth.
All you have to blame are your hormones, and to deal with the issue, the only thing you can do is to keep your body clean and cool.
5 Getting In The Thrush, Not So Good
Vaginal thrush is mostly caused by candida albicans, which is a yeast like fungus and is naturally present in the vagina. The fungus is kept in control by secretions and friendly bacteria found within the vagina. However, the hormonal rush inside the body during pregnancy tends to cause a dis-balance and make it grow uncontrollably.
This is the reason why most pregnant women have the urge to itch their panties at night time.
Although vaginal thrush is neither caused nor amplified by being intiamte, it still makes sense to refrain from having intercourse as long as the condition lasts. While you're at it, the thrush is also not known to infect the baby or cause harm to an unborn baby. With that, you should avoid taking any anti-thrush medicines without taking advice from your doctor.
Remember, vaginal thrush can be avoided with a healthy lifestyle and optimal diet choices. You can also use home remedies to do away with this infection.
4 Destabilizing Mood Swings
At times, you may find it hard to confess the fact that you reacted completely irrationally when you screamed in the face of the new receptionist because she didn't put the right amount of milk in your tea. Yes, your mood is going to swing that hard while you are pregnant.
Long after pregnancy, when you look back at your fond memories, you will come to the realization that you had well and truly lost the plot.
Though mood swings are natural, precautions must readily be considered. Make sure you’re taking a good quality fish oil supplement (krill oil is best) and are getting enough sleep, exercise (30 minutes, three times a week minimum) and vitamin D. Acupuncture can also assist in balancing your hormones, and may even relieve the side effects of hormones being off-balance.
3 Sharp Pains In The Groin, Like A Kick
You might start feeling a bit of pain in the groin area by the second trimester. Your baby is now in the development stage and is growing at alarming rates. The baby will start to push your gut upwards and your pelvic ligaments to their limits. If your work routine is tedious and you have to stand for extended periods during the day, then this condition is going to hit you worst.
Additionally, if you stand up quickly, you will have a sharp pain in the groin area. In the later stages of pregnancy, your baby's head will exert pressure on your pelvic muscles and may cause pain in the groin area.
Use a pillow or a foot-rest to rest your legs as the pain strikes. This will lighten your pressure on the feet and will reduce exertion on pelvic bones too. If it starts hurting at work, sit down for a while and take some rest until it goes away. One of the best methods to reduce groin pain is to wear a waist belt under your clothes to support your belly.
2 Acne Comes Back For The Final Laugh
The hormones will kick back at the wrong time during your pregnancy. You will have your teenage years visit you again for some time. In the case for some women, they may develop a bad case of acne while they're pregnant.
This might make you want to try out prescriptions from teenage days, including the usage of salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. However, the safety of these products is questionable during pregnancy. In any case, you should not use Accutane, since it is proven to cause birth defects.
The best thing to do is ignore these blemishes completely. Just use a mild cleansing face wash together with an organic facial mask once or twice a week. Rest-assured that all these blemishes will go away within a few days after delivery.
If you are facing discomfort while taking a number two or have notice blood on your toilet paper. There's a good chance that you're suffering from hemorrhoids. The pressure developed by your baby's weight may cause swelling in the veins within your anus. The condition may also get triggered as a result of the on & off constipation that you will experience during pregnancy.
Hemorrhoids are very common during pregnancy, but can be sidestepped if dealt with proactively. It is highly recommended for you to avoid getting constipated, drink lots of water, eat a healthy diet, and add fiber to your meals.
If you have a bad case of hemorrhoids, talk to your doctor about different pain relief methods that are available to you. But also be prepared to deal with hemorrhoids during your after birth recovery process too if you don't already have them.
References: Baby Centre UK, WebMD, Mayo Clinic, What to Expect