Feeling Dizzy or Lightheaded?

dizzy woman in yellowYour body is going through many, many changes throughout your pregnancy. You are gaining weight, your center of gravity is shifting, pregnancy hormones are raging, and your heart is pumping approximately 50% more blood than it is used to.

Your cardiovascular system is doing its best to adjust to all of these changes, but at times you may feel dizzy or lightheaded. Below, you will find the most common causes of lightheadedness and helpful tips on how to deal with the unwelcome feeling.

Common causes of lightheadedness

Many causes of lightheadedness are the same for pregnant women as they are for the general population.

  • Standing up too quickly – When you sit or crouch for long periods of time, blood tends to pool in your lower limbs. When you stand up too quickly, the blood in your legs may not be able to return to your heart, causing your blood pressure to drop and making you feel lightheaded. Taking care to stand up slowly can help prevent this problem. Also, taking steps to promote circulation in your lower limbs can help too.
  • Low blood sugar – It is important to make sure you have enough food and drink throughout the day. Low blood sugar can certainly make you feel lightheaded! Consider carrying snacks with you or eating many small meals instead of three large meals throughout the day. Also, be sure to drink 8-10 glasses of water a day. Drinking an electrolyte beverage can help too.
  • Compression of the Inferior Cava – As your uterus grows, it puts pressure on the inferior cava, the vein that returns blood from the lower half of your body to your heart. Sleeping or relaxing flat on your back can increase the pressure on the inferior cava and result in feelings of lightheadedness and nausea. Sleeping on your side can help alleviate this pressure. Try placing a pillow between your knees for extra comfort.
  • Excessive Exercise – Exercise during pregnancy is generally recommended to increase circulation, but it can also cause you to feel lightheaded or dizzy. If this happens, stop and lie down. If you can’t lie down, sit down with your head between your knees.

Call your health care provider if you consistently feel faint or dizzy. You should also get in touch with your doctor if you have frequent headaches, blurred vision, tingling, or if your lightheadedness results in fainting.

What do you think? Feeling Dizzy or Lightheaded?

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22 comments

  1. Avatar of Alanna Alanna says:

    Sometimes I feel like I’m going to faint in the shower.

  2. Avatar of Samantha Samantha says:

    I get light headed a lot but there isn’t much I can do. I snack when I can and drink plenty of fluids. Low budget during pregnancy has changed my eating habits =/

  3. Avatar of joyce joyce says:

    I get lightheaded a lot now that I’m almost in my third trimester. But I have learned to take it easy and keep snacks with me and try to rest for at least 30 minutes if I can a day.

  4. Avatar of Dario Dario says:

    she complains about being lightheaded but she’s well prepared with snacks

  5. Avatar of Marilyn Marilyn says:

    I don’t like the light headed parts.

  6. Avatar of Stephanie Stephanie says:

    Turning 39 weeks Thursday and I do feel lighthead dizziness most of the time if I stand up too fast or bend down for a long period of time it’s because I think I’m soo heavy

  7. Avatar of Sara Sara says:

    In the beginning of my third tri. I was constantly dizzy/lightheaded, even when sitting..but now i am 39 wks and haven’t noticed it lately…

  8. Avatar of Netta Netta says:

    My blood sugar gets low regularly, I keep juice and chocolate with me at all times just in case I get dizzy or light headed.

  9. I’ve been getting dizzy alot since i entered the third trimester…

  10. Avatar of Jeanetta Jeanetta says:

    I’ve been checking my blood sugar when I get dizzy and lightheaded, last night this happened and my blood sugar was 46. Not good…

  11. Avatar of Anna Anna says:

    I always have snacks and water with me even when I walk my dog :)

  12. Avatar of Hope Hope says:

    I definitely think I’ve become hypoglycemic while being pregnant. I try to keep crackers or almonds on hand to munch on when I feel lightheaded.

  13. Avatar of Julie Julie says:

    Heat is a major factor! If I get too hot I get angry and dizzy and uncomfortable!

  14. Avatar of SimplyAZ SimplyAZ says:

    the heat always make me feel dizzy

  15. Avatar of marichinno marichinno says:

    Drinking lots of water helps a lot especially on hot days.

  16. Avatar of DH DH says:

    i have hypoglycemia, so I suffer from lightheadedness and dizziness all the time as it is.

  17. Avatar of McKenzie McKenzie says:

    Usually I get dizzy with this heat we been having.

  18. Avatar of krsy001 krsy001 says:

    I was really nauseated today. Dizzy and nauseated. Not sure why, didn’t do many things today cuz of a sinus headache.

  19. Avatar of MissArta MissArta says:

    i was really lightheaded today. not sure why!!

  20. Avatar of Grace Grace says:

    pillows are helpful

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