How to cope with First Trimester Fatigue

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Struggling to keep your eyes open by 5pm? The first trimester is usually the worst for fatigue because your body is dealing with the highest levels of HCG hormones flowing through the body. Because of these increased levels, the first trimester is full of nausea and extreme tiredness.

Rest assured, the fatigue usually starts getting better by 12 weeks pregnant, and completely subsides by 14 weeks pregnant. Once the second trimester hits, most mamas feel a surge of energy that allows them to accomplish all the things they couldn’t for the last few weeks.

Read on to learn how to survive pregnancy fatigue

Simply put, pregnancy fatigue feels like a truck has run over you. It’s much more like total exhaustion than simple tiredness. No matter how much rest you get, you still feel absolutely exhausted.

It may seem dramatic, but there’s a good reason for the extreme tiredness of the first trimester. Although the teeny baby you’re growing is only the size of a poppy seed, your body is also growing something much more substantial: the placenta.

The placenta is a whole new organ in your body, designed to support your baby. The growth of the placenta is what is causing you the exhaustion you are feeling, and rightly so! When else in your life do you grow an entire new organ?

In addition to growing the placenta, your body is going through a bunch of other changes, including producing more blood, changes to the digestive system, etc. No wonder you’re so tired!

Nap/Rest as Much as Possible

Simply put, you need as much rest as you can possibly get. Not only are you growing a human (which is a huge deal), but your body is also growing a whole new organ, the placenta. There’s no other time in life that our bodies will do such a crazy thing. It takes a lot (aka ALL) of your energy.

You will need to take every opportunity to rest at this time. Any time you can put your feet up or catch a nap, no matter how brief, take it! That means other activities are going to be given lower priority, so be it. Spend as much time on the couch as possible

Don’t worry though, if life is unavoidable (other kids, a busy work life, etc.) and you can’t get as much rest as you like. As long as you’re not over exerting yourself, your baby will be just fine, even while you’re dragging your weary self to school pick-up or gruelling work hours.

Early Bedtime

Go to bed as early as you possibly can. If that means eating supper early and heading to bed straight after, do it. If you have other kids, now’s a great time to firm up a slightly earlier bedtime and tuck yourself in as soon as they’ve nodded off.

Caring for Older Kids

If this isn’t your first pregnancy, you have the added challenge of caring for your older kids, while being totally exhausted. It’s time to cut yourself some slack. Have your husband or a close friend or family member pitch in as much as possible.

If the majority of childcare falls on your shoulders, don’t be afraid to cut yourself some slack. Read or do other activities from the couch. 

Take your Prenatal Vitamins

Getting in all the right vitamins will help keep your body, baby and immune system strong. Here is a list of prenatal vitamins one should be taking. 

Cut Out the Unnecessary

Consider your commitments and make some cuts to anything unnecessary. Hosting events, leading (or attending) fitness classes, or anything else unnecessary, can be put on the back burner for now. Allow yourself a bit of slack. Give some love to yourself and your baby. You can always reconnect and recommit once exhaustion has eased up.

Lean on Others

It’s time to call on your husband, family and friends, because no mom is an island. You will need some help to delegate the tasks in your life. Cash in on those favours, big or small and don’t feel guilty about it!

Timing can be tricky because early in your pregnancy, you may not have told many, if anyone, about your big news. That doesn’t mean you can’t ask for help. Figure out an excuse (feeling under the weather, toddler was up all night, even a sore back) that will allow you to ask for some help. No one will be upset at your white lie once you reveal the big news!


First of all, it is time to lower your standards when it comes to a spotless house. Believe me, they will be lowered when your baby arrives, and drop to rock bottom in the toddler years.

Now is not the time to even attempt to maintain a pristine home. Do what you absolutely need to do and nothing else. Ignore those dust bunnies and let clutter accumulate on your dining room table (you’ll probably be eating take-out laying in bed anyway).

If your partner or husband is around, have them step up and do the dishes and laundry. If you can rely on close friends or relatives for a few favours, now is the time to ask.

If all else fails and you have the means, hire some help. Even a bi-weekly cleaning will make a huge difference and can get you through until fatigue has passed.

Work Adjustments

If you are able, you could consider some flexible hours or work from home if it’s an option. Even taking a few vacation days isn’t a horrible idea right now.

If you’re comfortable sharing your news with your supervisor early in your pregnancy, many supervisors will do what they can to make your day a little easier.


Experts recommend exercise to combat fatigue. It seems counter-intuitive (actually it seems completely insane to anyone who’s actually been pregnant), but exercise is said to help raise energy levels, even during the first trimester.

Now is not the time to start a whole new exercise regime if you have never done one, so rather opt for walks and yoga. Here are a few yoga poses that are safe to do during pregnancy.

Join an Online Community


They say it takes a village to raise a child but what about during pregnancy? Join our private online community to connect with other women who have the same due date as you. Ask questions and learn from experts in the field

Have Faith!

Know that even though it seems like you will be exhausted forever, no matter what you do, pregnancy fatigue will end and by mid-second trimester, you’ll likely feel back to yourself.

Information ref:

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