Help with Fatigue

Updated on March 21, 2008
M.F. asks from Minerva, OH
31 answers

Hi all-
Maybe I'm just writing this out of reaction to today, but I've never had a day when I felt so tired! In my other two pregnancies, I had fatigue, but never from the moment I awoke until evening, solid. I had a decent night's sleep, although my internal "pee alarm" went off at 6:30 a.m. just like it has almost every morning of each pregnancy (my first clue I was pregnant...2 days in a row, I thought "I better pee on a stick!" LOL!) Anyway, I'm about 7 weeks, and today was just brutal...would've loved to crawl into bed all day, but my other two little blessings won't allow that. Didn't win any mother-of-the-year awards today, but we got through, with a little help from Elmo :-) Took a 1-hour nap with my daughter, but that didn't touch it. I'm hoping it was just an out-of-the-ordinary day rather than the new normal, but I was wondering if anyone had tips to put a little pep in my step...I want to listen to my body, but I don't want to shortchange Big Sis and Big Bro while I'm growing #3! Thanks a bunch!
-M.

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all the suggestions. A couple weeks later, and I still have a few "truck ran me over" days here and there, but either I'm getting used to it, or it's not as bad most of the time. Thyroid and iron were both checked and fine, and the ultrasound showed only ONE baby (we would have been blessed by anything, but one was FINE with me, considering I'll have a 3 1/2 and almost 2-year-old in Nov!!). So, I'm getting by, counting the days till that magical second trimester. Thanks again for caring and taking the time to write! :-)

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D.Z.

answers from Cleveland on

Hey M.! I am pregnant w/my second and I experienced the same thing you did. I was exhausted 24/7 and had zero energy! I tried to go to bed early when I put my 3 1/2 y.o. down that seemed to help some. However, no matter how much sleep I got I never found any energy. There is good news though! After I got thru my 1st trimester, my energy level picked right back up and I as back to normal. Well, as "normal" as I was before, I suppose! So, hang in there and persevere! This too shall pass!

D.
www.GoGreen4Health.com

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W.M.

answers from Toledo on

M.,

I know just how you feel! I was so tired with my first child that was all I did was sleep. I would go to work come home eat dinner and sleep same routine the whole 9 months. Now with my 3rd I was so sick I couldn't get out of bed so all I could do was sleep. I know it is hard when you just want to nap. Maybe grandma or a friend could come over once in a while to help so mommy can get a nap:) I know easlier said then done. I just wanted to let you know you are not alone!

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A.C.

answers from Canton on

I don't have any stellar advice here other than to say - try going to be a little earlier each night.

Then be sure you are getting enough vitamins - in particular iron. A lack of that can cause fatigue. Give your doctor's office a call about fatigue and they may test your iron levels.

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E.W.

answers from Cleveland on

With my 3rd child I slept through my pregnancy it seemed. 10 years later I find I am dealing with thyroid disease. I would recommend checking that out. I now look back and see I have had this for at least 15 years and did not know it. They are know seeing a connection between women with undiagnosed thyroid and autism. Please make sure your doctor is checking that out. I knew even back then I had a good chance of developing thyroid problems because all my sisters have it but did not realize the significance then. Now I tell all women to make sure they have a healthy thyroid. They are so good at checking glucose levels. They should be checking thyroid levels too. Good luck to you on your third child.

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R.S.

answers from Toledo on

I would talk to your doctor or midwife as you might be anemic. I got anemic very easily and early on during my 2 pregnancies even though I at a very good diet.
You could also try getting a little less than 8 hours at night. I used to be a strict 8 hour a night girl until I had kids, now I feel like a zombie if I have more than 6 hours a night.

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S.Z.

answers from Cleveland on

Maybe your iron is low. Thats how I felt during my preg. and thats what it was with me. I would ask the doc though before you take extra iron. My prenatal vit didnt have enough iron for my body so I had to take extra.
Good luck

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J.F.

answers from Cleveland on

I was so tired when I was pregnant with my son. I was tired from morning to night, then I started drinking more water (which of course means peeing more) but I also took a walk as often as possible, I know it is hard with little ones but it really helped me, A LOT!!
Good Luck!
Jenn.......

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N.L.

answers from Cleveland on

M.,
I had a lot of fatigue when I was pregnant too so I know how you feel. I struggle with fatigue even when not prego! I drink Mona Vie and it really helps alot. Its just fruit so it would be good for your "soon to be" as well. Call me or email if you'd like to know [email protected]____.com or ###-###-####.

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D.J.

answers from Columbus on

Hi! I'm the mother of three..ages 10, 7 & almost 5. I remembering feeling extremely tired with my first one and I would come home from work and literally fall asleep on the couch at 7:00 and then get up and go to bed at 10:00. I believe each pregnancy is different and I don't remember feeling as exhausted with my other two. I know having two and a third on the way can be exhausting, especially when your children are so young and can't understand entirely why you are tired! My sister had twins for her 1st pregnancy and she was anemic....she had symptoms of being tired, etc. I know most OB's check this on your first visit, but I remember I didn't see my OB until about my 10th week with my 2nd & 3rd pregnancy. If you have to wait for your apptmt. until a certain week you could always try to increase your diet with iron rich food. Even if you are not anemic, it's healthy. I remember it includes green, leafy vegetables. I craved burgers with all of my pregnancies (I have always liked them). I literally could have had a burger with every meal for the first half of my pregnancy. I think if you crave something its a way for your body to let you know you need something from that particular food. GOOD LUCK & CONGRATULATIONS!! Debbie

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J.F.

answers from Cleveland on

I had the same problem w/ #2. I talked to my dr. and it turned out that I was anemic. I needed to take iron. I felt much better :)

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J.B.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi M.!
Congratulations! I think it just comes with the territory, especially when you're chasing two toddlers around all day. I've been fighting extreme fatigue as well...I'm 11 weeks pregnant with #2. I have always had severe anemia and I'm on super special (read: very expensive) prescription iron pills...they don't help. Not to say they're not good for you, I just don't think they help with the fatigue. My doc says I'm more tired with this one because now I've got a 20 month old who keeps me busy.
Instead of fighting it, I just adapt...naps here and there...but really what has helped is learning how to play quiet, stationary games with my toddler as much as possible. I used to run her around the house all day and wrestle with her, but now I try to keep her in one place a little more often. What can you do while sitting? Throw a ball around, blow bubbles, set up a coloring station, set up basket games...there's all kinds of ideas in the Toddlers Busy Book that can keep your children busy while you reserve your energy. Keep in mind, 2nd trimester's right around the corner, right? :) Hang in there...

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M.T.

answers from Cleveland on

I saw someone responded about cancer and hypothyroidism. I was diagnosed withe Graves disease- which is hyperthyroidism. I had the same feelings of sheer exhaustion and no amount of sleep worked. I'd ask your dr. for a simple blood test to make sure you aren't anemic or having thyroid probs. My dr. said thyroid probs are very common during pregnancy. No need to worry or stress -will make matters worse. But if you do have one, there are meds that are safe to take during pregnancy, and you will feel like your old self again. After 2 weeks on my antithyroid meds -- I feel great! Good luck!

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J.W.

answers from Dayton on

Get your thyroid checked ASAP. I did the same thing with my 3rd. Its not uncommon. Good luck

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K.L.

answers from Indianapolis on

Have your Dr.check your thyroid levels.
K.

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D.K.

answers from Indianapolis on

M.,

Congrats!! This is such an exciting time....AND exhausting. I promise that it does get better and I think that is what kept me going on my 2nd pregnancy. My girls are 3 and 20 months. I was always extremely fatigued the first trimester too. My doctor put me on iron pills for borderline anemia which helped. I know you are in the early stages of the pregnancy, so maybe you will find out if you are experiencing those symptoms. Of course chasing 2 other children definitely changes the entire dynamic of pregnancy and your physical state. :o) My mom always told me to nap whenever I had the chance. It's o-kay to listen to your body and relax. Now that spring is approaching you can get outside for some fresh air too which will definitely help.

D.

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B.R.

answers from Columbus on

I suggest getting your thyroid function tested. I know someone who developed hypothyroidism during her third pregnancy. She was always tired and always feeling cold. The kind of fatigue you're describing isn't normal, especially if you're taking a high iron prenatal vitamin. I know how very important it is to have a high level of energy when caring for little ones! You may also want to have the doctor check for anemia, even if you are taking a vitamin regularly.

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J.L.

answers from Toledo on

I was extremely tired with my second pregnancy. You should listen to your body, as much as you can. With a 2 1/2 and 1 year old, try to nap when they do and maybe go to bed when they do at night. Maybe dad or another family member can stay up with them a night or 2 a week so you can get a good nights sleep. I was fortunate to have my husband home so I was able to fall asleep shortly after eating dinner. My son is 9 and very involved in sports, so some nights dinner wouldn't be until about 8 at night.

Good luck to you. And hopefully you are sleeping now:)

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S.A.

answers from Kokomo on

M.,
You poor thing. I am pregnant with #2 right now and have been going through the same thing. You have to first take into consideration that you have a 2 1/2 yr old and a 1 yr old. These ages are tiresome on thier own. I had to drink the Vitamin Water 50/50 to help me with eating and energy. It is a purple color and has 50% of your daily need of most vitamins and minerals. A lot of times all we need is a little extra of all vitamins and minerals not just one. And best of all it is relatively inexpensive and completely safe. And if you have family or friends that can come and play with the others let them so you can sleep. It is a short time and don't beat yourself up by telling yourself you are short chaniging them. They won't remember and love you simply because you are mommy.

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T.J.

answers from Cincinnati on

The more pregnancies the harder it gets to cope with the trials of it! I am a mother to 4.(6yr old, twin 2yr olds & 3mth old) Gatorade and special K bars really helped boost my energy when I was exhausted. Then when hubby got home from work I'd hand kids off n go take a warm bath or nap to help relax me and get enough rest! Do lots of stuff to exhaust the older ones during early part of day and then you get a good nap in afternoon! Best of luck with number 3. LOL!

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P.L.

answers from Toledo on

M.,
Do you have a stay-at-home friend, or a relative, that
could keep the other two blessings for a day of rest? You
sound much like me. I thank God every day for blessing me
with my two. Now soon to be 12 and 10. Took us 5 1/2 years
to conceive so our children are very special. We never wanted
to leave them anywhere. But you are a little older, with this
baby, and have two very young blessings already. I know how
busy they keep you. You will need to sleep whenever you can.
One day of sleep for you will not deprive the little ones, and
will make it better for you, and for your pregnancy. I will be praying that God will bless your sleep and you find help. P.

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J.F.

answers from Canton on

I think it only natural that you are tired, and this weather dosen't help. Look at how much more you have to do in a day. Your children are at very needy ages and your body is under stress. Take time out for yourself, sit and have a cup of tea and focus on the basics. I am a consultant for BeautiControl and our specialty is relaxation and destressing. I would be happy to treat you and your friends to an evening of pampering and give you some suggestions on how to create a spa like atmosphere in your own home. ALSO if you host the event you get alot of very nice perks a FREE HERBAL neckwrap! FREE and discounted product I will do microderm abrasion on your face that night and more!! Call me today or respond to this e-mail if you are interested! I'd live the opportunity to share this experience with you. In the meantime don't feel guilty if you need a nap,too! Have a great day! Hope to hear from you soon!

I am a 43 year old dental hygienist, mother of 3 boys 15,13,& 7 and life is good! I sell BeautiControl on the side to give me much needed girlfriend time and some extra spending money and that has been a blessing!

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K.W.

answers from Indianapolis on

I was super tired with my 3rd too. It turns out my iron was extremely low. The doc started me on an iron supplement in addition to the prenatal vitamins. Maybe ask your doc about your iron levels. Good luck!

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J.S.

answers from Cleveland on

Make sure you're staying away from caffeine (pop, coffee, tea, chocolate-ow). Sometimes even if your body is sleeping if you have too much caffeine or sugar you aren't able to get proper REM sleep and so you're going to be fatigued. If that's not the issues see if you can have your kids spend some quality time with friends or family, then go home and get some sleep.
Also drink lots of water, if you keep your body hydrated it helps.

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J.C.

answers from Fort Wayne on

How does your morning start out? I notice, especially when I was pregnant, that if I started the morning out on the couch watching tv or something else that wasn't active, I always felt WAY more tired by 10 or 11. I always try to start my mornings out actively, even if it's just standing up while reading a book and sipping on coffee. If I sit down for more than 20 minutes, that's it! If you get all your house chores finished in the morning, it not only sets you up for a good day due to looking around and having everything cleaned, but it also sets up your energy vibe for the day. Give it a try, even if to start out, all you're doing is taking a shower in the morning, instead of waiting until the kids lay down. It's harder taking one while you're standing on one foot and using the other to hold the curtain shut with the other, but it sure does wake you up!!!!

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K.W.

answers from Indianapolis on

I was very tired with both of mine and one thing my mother told me was to forget about housework, etc. and take a nap when they do. Also, if that isn't working, consider asking someone to come over to watch them...or take them for a couple of hours...so you can rest. You really do need your energy for everyong involved! Once you start getting futher along and they can see that Mommy's got something in her tummy, it will be easier for them to understand the changes a little.

Congrats and best wishes on your new baby!!

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C.D.

answers from Cincinnati on

I feel your pain. I was extremely tired with my first and third children. With my first, my routine was to come home from work, eat, and go to bed between 6:30-7pm. With my third, I didn't have that luxury but I found that it helped if I went to bed when the older kids did. I was in bed between 8 & 9 every night. I also napped at lunch time. On the weekends, I enlisted someone to watch the kids so I could have an extended nap on Sat. I hope this helps. It does get better in the 2nd trimester. Good Luck!

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D.K.

answers from Indianapolis on

YOu need to check out the website MXICORP.com. HIGH antioxidant supplement that is INCREDIBLE! You'll be amazed at the difference in your energy level. I've had another trainer at the gym who told me it helped get her through the day when she thought she needed to go home & take a nap.

Let me know if you want more info. I can give you some referrals, too. AAAAAAAAAWESOME STUFF!!

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P.S.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi M.! Not to frighten you, but it may be your thyroid. I'm currently recovering from thyroid cancer. I felt fatigued as well, but how many moms do you know who aren't...So it wasn't a symptom that I considered medical. My condition was discovered completely by accident as my doctor felt my throat and noticed that it wasn't quite right. Now, in all likelihood, your situation is not cancer; however, it could be hypothyroidism which medication can easily correct. In any case, I would definitely check with your doctor to see if there are any conditions that could be causing it. Your kids need you healthy! I know when I had my daughter I was tired, but not as much as you are describing. Good luck! P.

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L.C.

answers from Indianapolis on

Hi M.!
You described my experience perfectly! I was fine until I had my first pregnancy. My body will not absorb iron, no matter how much I take, so I am tired all the time. In addition to that, the doctor said "my brain does not record sleep" so that is why it feels like bedtime as soon as I get up. Over the years, things I have found to help:
1.) First thing in the morning, eat a banana, oats, water or juice and take B12 tablet. A few hours later, eat sugar. (Two cookies, cupcake or a handful of raisins, etc. Fruit is obviously better than cookies and icecream, but I usually eat a Quaker Chewy Granola Bar with choc. chips...sometime two of them.
2.) Eat raw green with lunch. Romaine, spinach, celery, peppers, etc. Eat any lunch, just be sure to eat raw green too.
3.) Snack sweet every few hours as above. (Just two cookies!)A hard boiled egg along with those cookies is really energy boosting!
4.) Eat beef everyday. Yep! Those were my doctor's orders! As long as you eat oats and veggies, meat is not a problem. I feel my best when I have a lean steak...about the size of the palm of my hand, not my whole hand size.
5.) As your kids grow older, have "Quiet Time" for everyone in the house three times a day! Mid morning, I would snuggle and read with the kids in the *fancy* living room for a long hour. Then they would go play in the family room again, and I could sometimes lie half alseep for awhile. After lunch, all kids go to their beds with books. They don't have to sleep, but the usually will. An hour before bed, it is bathtime, then snuggle in bed and read stories. After lying down to read then I could be up awhile longer in the evening.
6.) No nutrasweet, aspartaime, sweet and low, equal, splenda, etc. SUGAR only! Those chemicals cause A.D.D. and cause major brain drain leaving you so tired. Sugar has 15 cal. a tsp., is natural, and of course, contains no fat or chemicals. It is a great thing! Honey is even better, but I don't like it. Working on it though.
7.) The fewer chemical preservatives (frozen and convenience foods) that you use, the more energy you will have. Grow tomatoes in a pot or garden.
8.) Jumping around exercise wears me out. Simple slow strength maneuvers give me energy.
9.) Once the kids were older, coffee became a wonderful thing in my life. I make it weak so I can have it along with my sweet snack every few hours. The doctor also prescribed Wellbutrin which helps a great deal. (My sisters hated taking it for this same problem and just use coffee.)
10.) Deep breath excercise a good stretch every hour.

Hope this helps!

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M.W.

answers from Indianapolis on

I felt the same way from the moment I found I was pregnant! My babes are almost 5,3.5,21 mos. Loved every exhausting minute of it. The most irritating feeling is yet to come...having babies so close together like we have! Just a few more weeks you'll probably be feeling unbelievable pressure in your pelvis and every other joint below your belt line! Believe me, you will be better rested AFTER the baby is born! Just remember it is a relatively short time in your life when the days seem unbearably long. I found I did better when I adopted their sleep schedule...not much fun for hubby but at least I was less of a whiner AND was a much more fun-loving mommy! Good luck and congrats!

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D.D.

answers from Indianapolis on

Has your doctor said anything to you about anemia? While pregnant, I worked, and experienced the fatigue as well. During one of the routine checkups the doctor found I was seriously anemic. He prescribed the iron enriched prenatal vitamins. The vitamins are nothing nice on an empty stomach but thy did help with the fatigue.

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