Now that you’re expecting, it may seem as though you are thirsty all of the time. This symptom isn’t just your imagination, however, as expectant moms often report an increased sense of thirst and do need to drink more water and other fluids throughout their pregnancies.
Why am I so Thirsty During Pregnancy?
For most women, an increased sense of thirst is entirely normal during pregnancy. Your body simply requires more fluids in order to function properly.
As your baby grows and develops in your womb, the fluid filled chamber that protects and nourishes baby, the amniotic sac, also grows larger. Your body needs to take in more fluids to support the increase in blood volume, and to help your body rid itself of waste from its normal functions, including the waste that is produced as your baby matures.
Some women also find that they lose more fluid during their pregnancy as they seem to sweat a bit more as they go about their normal routines of walking and other light exercise. This is especially true of expectant mothers that live in warmer climates.
In addition to these processes, as your baby continues to develop, your body releases hormones that increase your need to urinate while you are pregnant. Your growing womb also starts to press down on your bladder, which also stimulates this urge. As you expel more fluids, it is normal for your sense of thirst to increase.
When to Talk to Your Doctor about an Increased Sense of Thirst
Sometimes excessive thirst during pregnancy is not normal and is actually a sign of a complication known as gestational diabetes. Most women will be tested for this complication at some point during their pregnancy.
If you have thirst that isn’t resolved by increasing your fluid intake, or if you experience excessive thirst in the second and third trimester of your pregnancy, mention it to your doctor. It’s likely that you doctor will test you, or possibly retest you, to see if you have developed gestational diabetes. While this condition can be a serious complication, it can usually be managed well with treatment when it is caught early.
Tips to Help You Cope with Excessive Thirst
Most pregnant women will need to drink at least 8 to 10 eight ounce glasses of water or other fluid each day. If it’s very warm, or if you are very physically active through the day, you will need more. If you are coping with nausea and other symptoms of morning sickness, it can be especially difficult to drink enough water to stay hydrated. Sipping on lemon water may help curb nausea or vomiting.
Sipping on ice chips, popsicles and other frozen treats throughout the day can help you to slowly increase your fluid intake without upsetting your stomach. Eating more fruits and vegetables that naturally contain a lot of water will also help. Reducing the amount of salt in your diet can also help you to feel less thirsty.
Sometimes your excessive thirst may be because you’ve been so busy that you’ve forgotten to drink enough water. If this is the case, you may want to consider using an app on your PC or smartphone to periodically remind you to drink more water throughout the day.