As any woman who's suffered will tell you (and at least half do), the nausea experienced during pregnancy is unpleasant to say the least. For many, it is worst first thing, hence its popular name of morning sickness. But morning, noon or night, it can floor you.
Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy (NVP) is thought to be caused by the rush of pregnancy hormones (human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) and oestrogen), which start coursing through your body from the moment you conceive and, quite often, it can be the first clue you are pregnant.
Although it can be one of the hardest symptoms to endure, it's suspected that the sickness is actually a good thing, because it signifies your body is producing enough of the right hormones to sustain your pregnancy. In fact, there's some evidence to suggest those who suffer worse with it are less likely to have a miscarriage. That said, women who never experience sickness are still very likely to complete a healthy pregnancy.
For many women, the sickness is worst in the early stages. You might start experiencing the symptoms at around five or six weeks, and they might continue until your 15th or 16th week (of course everyone is different). Some women will have to suffer well into their second trimester, while a small number of (very unfortunate!) mums-to-be have to endure it until they reach full term and deliver their baby.
Often those who suffer worst of all with pregnancy sickness are the absolute supermums who are carrying twins or more – and this is because their hormone levels are higher than they would have been with a single foetus.
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