Pregnancy brings about a lot of change in your physical health. You will also notice some changes in your senses of smell and taste as well. This article highlights how pregnancy affects your senses of smell and taste. Read on to know more…
Changes in the sense of taste and smell are common symptoms observed at the early stages of pregnancy. It is experienced by almost all pregnant women. They become highly sensitive towards strong smells and bitter tastes. The effect of this change is different for every woman. Some of them may become overly sensitive towards a perfume fragrance or scent of body lotion while others may not be able to tolerate the strong smell of a particular food.
Similarly, some women complain about a bitter taste in mouth after consuming any food or drink. Others may get a peculiar taste in the mouth even when they are not eating anything. This increased sensitivity of taste and smell causes a lot of annoyance to expecting mothers as it tends to induce nausea. Many of them refuse to eat anything because of the change in their sense of taste.
What Makes Your Sense of Smell and Taste Change During Pregnancy?
Hormones are mainly responsible for an elevated sense of smell and taste. During pregnancy, the levels of estrogen and progesterone increase. These hormonal changes influence the functioning of the sensory organs of taste and smell. As a result, you experience this kind of abnormal change in the sense of smell and taste. You must have observed it is accompanied by morning sickness which is also triggered by increase in the level of estrogen hormone.
In other words, the elevated sense of taste and smell last as long as there is morning sickness. Some women are concerned whether such changes can have any adverse effect on their baby or not. I would like to tell them that it is an absolutely harmless condition. In fact, research studies have found that it is a natural response of the body to stop the expecting mother from consuming or inhaling any such substances that can cause harm to the unborn baby. Thus we can say that it ensures proper protection for the fetus from any unwanted foreign substance.
Dealing With Changes in Taste and Smell
The best way to deal with this problem of an altered sense of smell and taste is to avoid the triggers altogether. Here are a few helpful tips that can be helpful for you:
- Make sure that there is proper ventilation in your home. Keep the windows open as much as possible. Thus you can ensure that the indoor air is free from unwanted smells and odors.
- Always wear washed clothes as fibers tend to retain odors that can worsen your problem.
- Do not use any scented skin care products, toiletries, detergents etc. Rather, start using unscented varieties of these products.
- Scents of mint, ginger or lemons have a soothing effect on your senses and helps a lot in getting rid of nausea. So, you should keep all those scents around you.
- Bring about some changes in your diet and include all such foods in it that you like to eat and eliminate those that you do not like.
- If you cannot tolerate the smell of a particular food, then do not try to cook it yourself. Ask your partner to help you out.
- To counter the effect of an unwanted taste in your mouth, you can eat spicy foods. Such foods have a numbing effect on the taste buds and you may find that bitterness of the mouth gone after having spicy foods.
- If you feel a constant bitter taste in the mouth, then gentle brushing of the tongue while brushing the teeth may help you. Similarly, rinsing the mouth with saline water will help to neutralize the bitterness felt in the tongue.
There is no doubt that a change in your senses is a bothersome problem. However, the good thing is that it is just a temporary problem and you do not have to deal with it throughout the pregnancy. It will be there in the first and second semester till the time you experience morning sickness. After that, mucus production in the mouth and nose will increase and you will start feeling better.