Almost all women experience a very noticable increase in fatigue early in pregnancy. For some women it is the earliest sign that they are pregnant. For most women, the degree of fatigue lessens as they move into the second trimester (about 12-13 weeks gestation). If you are not anemic and your nutrition is good, there’s not much you can do about this. Go ahead and check out when you feel particularly tired…..lie down; take a nap; listen to your body. But don’t allow the fatigue to consume the day……make a point to get out and get your usual amount of exercise and fresh air.

Anemia can also cause fatigue. Anemia is most often caused by a decrease in the amount of the molecule in your red blood cells which carries oxygen. If the oxygen-carrying capacity of your blood is reduced, you are less able to meet the demand for oxygen from the cells of your body. Many women, due to menstruation and diets low in iron, begin their pregnancy close to the point of anemia. Your doctor or midwife should do a blood count at your first prenatal visit to determine if you are anemic. If so, you probably need more iron in your diet, and more of the other nutrients which build up your blood.