Most of the focus when it comes to a pregnant woman and scent have to do with the outside smells that make mom heave. A finely tuned sense of smell exists when mom is pregnant, so certain smells push her over the edge. What happens, then, when the smell is coming from mom?
Pregnancy changes how our bodies smell, and some of the things we experience during pregnancy, labor and delivery don't smell great. Our nether regions are going through major changes, and hormone fluctuations, infections, and bleeding can leave us worried that we stink.
Remember that our pregnancy sniffer is going to make us sensitive, even to our own stink, so we're probably the ones who notice more than anyone else when our body odor changes. Some scents shouldn't be ignored, and others aren't really a big deal and will clear up when the pregnancy is over.
It's easy to become embarrassed by the odors we put off when pregnant, but certain smells coming from us can be warnings or signs that we need to see the doctor. There are scents that mean labor is coming on and those that mean we should lay off the bean burritos. We can learn and grow if we pay attention to the way we smell.
Wear deodorant, shower regularly, and throw on some perfume. However, don't stress about pregnancy smells that are normal and uncontrollable. This is only a season of life, and even if it's a smelly one, we get a baby when it's over.
15 Pregnancy Blow Ups
Imagine a person inside of the body pushing on mom's bladder and colon. Every time she eats, heartburn or extreme gas occurs, sometimes both. That is pregnancy in a nutshell, and it can result in some seriously rank farts.
Pregnant women often find they can't control when they pass gas or how bad it's going to smell, and that only gets worse as the pregnancy progresses. Hormone fluctuations, Braxton Hicks contractions, and less room in mom's body means there will be farts after every meal and snack. It's enough to make mom just want to stay home as opposed to grossing out a room of innocent people.
There's nothing that can be done about pregnancy toots, and if they stink, they stink. Even women who watch what they eat tend to have problems with gas when pregnant. Instead of hiding it, mom can just fess up and say it's the baby's fault.
14 Uninvited Panty Visitor
Moms spend their time before pregnancy monitoring the down below action closely. Discharge can be a sign of ovulation, so women who are trying to conceive pay attention to anything going on in the panty department.
After mom becomes pregnant she may expect the discharge phase to be over. She won't ovulate while pregnant, so things should stay relatively dry down below, right? Wrong. Due to crazy hormone fluctuations, moms can have a clear discharge throughout pregnancy.
Usually this discharge is odorless, and that's a good sign that it's not the result of an infection. However, some women say it does smell, though the smell may not be strong or particularly off-putting. It's fine to ask the doctor about a discharge that starts while mom is pregnant, but if the odor is fairly benign, it's likely innocuous. There are women who choose to wear panty liners on the days the discharge is heaviest to save their undies.
13 Number One Smells
Pee stinks, and pregnant women pee a lot when pregnant. In fact, they don't always make it to the bathroom in time to place all of their urine in the toilet. This starts as early as the first trimester.
There are instances where moms full-on pee their pants, and there are other times when they just dribble on their way to the restroom. Both are bad, but many women won't leave work to go home and change after a bit of dribble. That means they may go all day smelling just slightly like pee.
There are women who just wear panty liners or adult diapers preemptively, but others really try to hold it so they can save money for the baby's diapers instead of spending it on their own.
This problem doesn't disappear when pregnancy ends. Women will find their bladders are compromised forever. It's just one of the joys of motherhood.
12 The Pushing Odor
Birth comes with surprises. No matter how detailed our birth plans are, we can't prepare for everything, and there's no way to emotionally prepare for some of the smells that come with birth.
One of the most horrifying is the scent of poop. When everyone else in the room is wearing pants yet mom knows the odor floating in the air is one of a bowel movement, it becomes pretty obvious what has occurred. Many women don't know they've pooped while pushing because epidurals keep them from feeling it, but they can smell it if the doctors and nurses don't get rid of it fast enough.
Luckily, mom won't be able to focus on the smell that accompanies her pooping in public for long because there's a baby to push out. Since labor poop usually occurs during the pushing stage, mom will have to refocus quickly and deal with the embarrassment of pooping during labor later.
11 The Game Is On
Mom imagines that her water breaking will be an event like in the movies. Women expect it to be a moment that is obviously the beginning of labor, but it doesn't usually end up that way. In fact, many women are already in the hospital having contractions before their water finally breaks.
If mom is at home and liquid is trickling out of her, one way to figure out what it is is by smelling it. Amniotic fluid has a distinct, sometimes sweet smell. It's different than the smell of urine. It's been described as smelling like everything from the beach to gin, but it doesn't smell like pee.
This is one of those times during pregnancy where the smells downstairs offer a glimpse into what is happening in the pregnancy. It's useful to know what amniotic fluid smells like since it's not likely mom will have a sudden rush of fluid. It will probably just be a trickle that could be confused with urine if not for the scent.
10 Bring The Sweat
It's not fun to think about, but as we gain weight, we sweat even in cold weather. All the extra belly weight we gain increases our sweat down there, and most of us aren't lucky enough to escape pregnancy without gaining a bit of weight in the thighs as well. All of this adds up to much stinkier nether regions than usual.
We're not going to rock a thigh gap while pregnant, so our legs will rub together and create their own friction that results in sweat. If we are able, we should be taking part in moderate exercise while pregnant, and we'll find that even after walks we'll feel like we've wet our pants from all the sweat down below.
Moms will often change clothes more than once a day due to feeling icky downstairs. It's part of being pregnant, but not a particularly fun part.
9 Birth After Birth
If the smell of blood makes mom sick, she is in for the horror show of her life during labor. Even after labor, the smells just keep coming. Mom will have a baby and then give birth to the precious placenta that kept her child nourished for nine months.
Some people choose to leave the placenta attached to the baby until it falls off on its own, but most people don't do this. One obvious reason is the scent. When mom has the afterbirth, she will notice that it smells like blood and amniotic fluid mixed together, a none too appetizing combination.
Luckily, mom will have the baby to focus on at this point, but a woman who wants to encapsulate the placenta for consumption may want to hold her nose as the placenta emerges. It's hard to imagine swallowing that thing after mom has smelled it.
8 Mini Period?
Mom expects a reprieve from her period while pregnant, and she'll generally receive one. However, women can bleed during implantation, the process where the fertilized egg makes its home in the uterus. This can cause cramping and bleeding, and the blood may smell. Mom will likely thing she is getting her period.
Blood generally has a rust-like smell, but mom may notice this isn't exactly the same as what she's used to on her period. There should be much less blood, and due to hormone changes and discharge, it may have a slightly different odor.
Once mom knows she's pregnant, bleeding should sound an alarm in her mind and she should contact her doctor or midwife to make sure all is well. In the early days, bleeding can be normal and may actually signal that the baby is making a home. A slightly different scent might tip mom off to this change.
7 The It's-Been-Too-Long Smell
Women may become constipated while pregnant. Hormones can slow down our digestion, and this can slow down how often we excrete waste, causing a back up that can leave us miserable. Many women go into labor constipated, and since enemas aren't given before labor these days, they stay backed up until either pooping while they push or after the labor is over.
In the midst of constipation, it's startling to find that most hospitals won't let mom leave until she has gone number two. They will offer her water and stool softeners, and it's best to take it all and try to make it happen as soon as possible.
The first poop after birth is known for being memorable because of how bad it hurts, but it also doesn't smell too great. Backed up waste is pretty disgusting, and combined with all the blood mom will be losing right after birth, it's enough to make mom heave.
6 Lochia And All It Contains
Lochia is described as the disaster that occurs after we give birth. Coming out of our bodies in mass quantities is uterine tissue, mucus, and blood. We're bleeding from birth and from the placenta being taken from our bodies, leaving vessels open. The uterus will contract to stop the bleeding, but mom won't completely stop for around six weeks. That's why we leave the hospital in adult diapers.
Lochia contains so much nastiness that it's no surprise it doesn't smell great. Mom will want to change panties and then pads often to avoid the scent and the feel of all that moisture down below.
Bleeding is a normal part of recovering from birth, but most women are startled at the amount of blood and the scent it puts off, mostly because they forget it's more than just blood in there. It's a mixture of inside parts that have to come out.
5 Not Quite Right
Bacterial vaginosis(BV) is an infection that occurs in many women when they are pregnant, and there are risks to it going untreated. It can cause miscarriages and preterm labor, and many women don't even know they have the condition because they may not show symptoms.
One noticeable symptom is a discharge that is sometimes described as having a fish-like odor. Mom may mistake this for normal pregnancy discharge at first, but the smell is a sign that something is off.
BV occurs when there is a bacterial imbalance in mom's body, and doctors will treat the condition if they feel it is a threat to the pregnancy. However, it can come back, and the fishy smell from the discharge is a sign that it has. The smell may be accompanied by itching or painful urination, and mom should not douche to try to rid herself of these symptoms.
4 Basking In The Afterglow
Sex has it's own scent, and the smell once the sex is over is distinct. Mom and her partner may not notice the sex smell after a while because they are used to each other and the smells that come with intimacy. That's why they may be shocked when the scent changes while mom is pregnant.
Discharge, sweat, and all the hormonal changes mom is going through may cause the after-sex smell to seem slightly off. It's normal, and unless mom or dad thinks they are catching a whiff of amniotic fluid, it's nothing to worry about. Mom's body chemistry will find a new normal once pregnancy is over.
It can be off putting at first to realize even things that should stay the same, like intimacy, are different in their own ways, but the smell usually isn't unpleasant. It's just different, and mom's partner will likely not care at all.
3 Like Bread, But Without The Bread
Because Mother Nature isn't kind, women can develop yeast infections while pregnant. These burning, itching irritants are inconvenient, and it may be hard for mom to realize she has one because she mistakes the accompanying discharge for pregnancy discharge.
Another tricky part is that the smell is not always distinct when it comes to yeast infections. As the name implies, there is a yeast-like odor if there is one at all, but it's not always present. For a pregnant woman who is already trying to get used to how her body smells while she is carrying a person, it may be hard to tell the difference.
Treating yeast infections while pregnant, once mom knows for sure that's what's she's dealing with, is simple. A proper diagnosis is the key, and the slightly bread-like scent may be the clue that convinces mom to seek treatment.
2 Way Down Below
Besides the smells that mom deals with from her lady bits, there are also the scents that come from other parts of her body when she is pregnant. Hormones leave nothing unaffected, and mom can expect extra sweat and swelling to change her scent for the whole nine months.
Women often report feeling like their feet smell horrible, and that makes sense. Most women report at least moderate swelling in their feet, and women who retain more fluid or have blood pressure issues may notice a large amount of swelling. This will lead to discomfort and more sweat, and the sweat will lead to a stinky smell.
Wearing comfortable, open shoes, and taking a load off when possible are good ideas when dealing with pregnancy feet. There are scented lotions and powders that may help with the smell, but mom will likely have to get someone else to apply them. Towards the end of pregnancy, most women can't even reach their feet.
1 Dragon Breath
Women can often hide the smells that are going on in their lady regions, but it's hard to deal with horrible breath during pregnancy. It's a reality for most women, and it leaves them popping mints or gum to try to kill the horrible taste and smell.
Morning sickness and the vomiting that often accompany it can make mom's breath horrible. Saliva levels are also off from hormone fluctuations, and this can give mom dry mouth which then leads to bad breath. Bacteria that lives in mom's mouth may also add to the overall bad breath issue. This problem doesn't go away, though it may improve when some of the first trimester crazy is over.
Just like pregnancy farts are a reality, so is pregnancy breath. Keep a toothbrush and gum handy, but don't sweat it. Every woman who has ever been pregnant understands, and anyone who doesn't can get over it.