Pregnancy Fatigue: Reasons Moms-to-Be May Feel Tired in the First, Second & Third Trimesters of Pregnancy by Dr. Shayna Mancuso

5 years ago

Pregnancy Fatigue: Reasons Moms-to-Be May Feel Tired in the First, Second & Third Trimesters of Pregnancy

Pregnant and can't seem to catch enough ZZZZs? You are not alone! Feeling extremely tired during pregnancy is quite common. Let's take a quick look at what is considered "normal" in each trimester.

Fatigue in the First Trimester of Pregnancy

Oftentimes, fatigue is the first symptom of pregnancy.

  • The moment the fertilized egg implants into the lining of a woman's uterus, the body begins to secrete large amounts of progesterone. Progesterone has been shown in studies to have sedative-like effects in humans.
  • A women's body is also beginning to increase overall blood volume used to carry nutrients and oxygen to the growing baby.
  • Nausea, vomiting and low blood sugar can make a new mama-to-be feel quite tired in the first trimester.
  • Lastly, let's not forget exhausting waves of emotions that newly pregnant moms may experience.

Fatigue in the Second Trimester of Pregnancy

This is the “I’ve got this” trimester where women begin to feel a little bit like their old self. The fatigue is usually greatly improved.

  • The body begins to adjust to the massive changes that have taken place.
  • The thought of exercising may become more appealing in the second trimester, which helps to increase overall energy.

Fatigue in the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

The finish line is within reach, yet the fatigue has definitely made a return appearance in the third trimester!

  • Getting a good sleep at night becomes a greater challenge, as it is very hard to get comfortable in your own bed and frequent urination comes into play.
  • In the third trimester, pregnant moms may find that they tire quickly from activities they previously performed with ease. The normal physiologic changes of pregnancy and the extra weight mom is now carrying around may be to blame for this.
  • Stay tuned, because the beginning stages of labor will add to the tiredness – and the excitement!!!

Here are other things to keep in mind:

  • Your doctor or midwife will check your blood count (hemoglobin and hematocrit) in the first and third trimesters to check for anemia. Anemia may be a culprit for cause extreme tiredness in all trimesters.
  • Remember to be good to yourself. Growing a human truly is a superpower!
  • Getting adequate rest, even 15-minute naps, is quite beneficial.
  • Stay hydrated and eat adequate calories. Making healthy food choices and staying active when you are able to will combat the fatigue.
  • Remember to do one thing each day that brings you great joy and relaxation.

How did you handle the fatigue of pregnancy?

The information on is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information provided through this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider.

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This is so helpful to understand pregnancy exhaustion
Elisa Schmitz
YES! I was so tired. I remember that grabbing naps when I could was very helpful. Even just putting my feet up, or lying on my right side for a few moments, helped a lot. Thank you for the insight, Dr. Shayna Mancuso !
Dr. Shayna Mancuso
Very true Elisa All Schmitz 30Seconds ! I remember coming home from helping mamas at the hospital all day, and falling asleep on the couch instantly.. even 15 minutes helped me to recharge !

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