Extreme pregnancy fatigue

While morning sickness gets all the attention, fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy.

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Q: I’m five-months pregnant with my first baby and can’t believe how tired I am all the time. Could there be something wrong or is this normal?

A: Fatigue is one of the most common pregnancy symptoms (although nausea gets all the press). Your body is going through massive changes, including to your cardiac, respiratory and gastrointestinal systems. Poor sleep patterns (like getting up to pee at night )and other external stressors also play a role. Your doctor may want to do some simple blood tests to rule out significant anemia or an underactive thyroid. Fortunately, most women feel the fatigue lift at 18 weeks. Until then, consider 15- to 30-minute power naps, light exercise and make sure you eat high-protein snacks (not pure carbohydrates) to get you through the day.
—Elaine Herer, Ob/Gyn

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