When morning sickness has you feeling lousy in the first trimester, you might want to see the end of it as soon as possible. But if your morning sickness suddenly stops before you think it should, you might start worrying what it means for your pregnancy. Could it be a sign of miscarriage? Let’s run through the facts on what’s normal and what’s not when it comes to the end of morning sickness.
What is morning sickness, anyway?
Morning sickness is a physiological reaction to early pregnancy. The most famous signs of it are nausea and vomiting, but it can also cause food aversions and cravings, sleepiness and sensitivity to smells. It’s still not 100% clear what cause morning sickness, but it’s generally understood to be a reaction to the changing hormone balance you experience in early pregnancy. It’s estimated that up to 80% of expecting moms experience some kind of morning sickness during their pregnancy.
When should morning sickness stop?
Every pregnancy is different, but morning sickness symptoms like nausea usually make an appearance around two weeks after missing your period. For many moms, the worst of it occurs between Weeks 8 through 10. Symptoms tend to improve as hormone levels stabilize around the end of the first trimester at Week 13.
However, morning sickness isn’t the same for everyone. Some moms don’t experience any at all during their whole pregnancy, and for others, the symptoms can come and go at different times. Consider this timeframe more of a general guideline than a rule for how a healthy pregnancy progresses.
Morning sickness stopped suddenly: A miscarriage sign?
About 80% of miscarriages occur in the first trimester of pregnancy1– the same timeframe you are most likely to experience morning sickness. Since pregnancy symptoms can be a sign of the hormone changes that support a healthy pregnancy, the sudden end of morning sickness can sometimes accompany a miscarriage.
However, the end of morning sickness does not necessarily mean you have had a miscarriage. Remember: after the peak at around Week 8 to 10, morning sickness symptoms can vary in intensity before finally clearing up at the start of the second trimester.
If you experience lower back or abdominal pain, or bleeding during the first trimester, see a doctor right away. However, if your only clue is the end of morning sickness, consider calling your OB-GYN before jumping to the worst case scenario. Even if your baby is too small to see on a scan yet, they may be able to offer you test of your pregnancy hormones to set your mind at ease.
Is there a morning sickness-miscarriage connection?
Just as the end of morning sickness doesn’t always mean a miscarriage, neither does a miscarriage always spell the end of morning sickness symptoms. In the case of “missed miscarriage”, the remaining villi and placenta in the uterus can continue to cause morning sickness symptoms even if the fetus is no longer alive.
In that sense, it’s clear to see that the presence or absence of morning sickness isn’t a very reliable indicator of whether a miscarriage has occurred. If you have any concerns, your OB-GYN and midwife should be your first port of call.
Don’t panic even if your morning sickness stopped suddenly
Most miscarriages that take place in the first trimester occur due to chromosomal abnormalities. There’s nothing that can be done to prevent them. Even if a miscarriage were to occur, it would be in no way your fault.
Even though, this makes the first trimester can be an anxious time – especially if you’ve suffered the heartache of a miscarriage before. It can make you very aware of the changes taking place in your body, and it can be hard not to read into every little thing.
However, too much stress isn’t good for you or your baby’s health. The end of morning sickness doesn’t necessarily mean anything bad, but don’t hesitate to see your doctor if you have any concerns about a miscarriage. Your peace of mind is important.