Some women are said to have skin that glows during pregnancy. It’s possible this glow is caused in part by all that water you are drinking. Excessive thirst during pregnancy is universal. In most cases, the reasons you are so thirsty can be attributed to normal changes in the body during pregnancy.
Women who experience excessive thirst during pregnancy are not just very thirsty. They also have dry mouth (especially at night) and frequent urination. Swelling of the hands, feet, and ankles also occasionally accompanies excessive thirst.
The increased levels of hormones, especially estrogen, cause a pregnant woman to feel thirsty, but this is for a good reason. Your body needs fluids to create amniotic fluid. Also, your kidneys are working overtime to get rid of the waste that the baby is producing, and they need water for that. Finally, your blood circulation increases dramatically when you are pregnant — up to 40 percent — according to AskDrSears.com. This increase in blood volume requires an increase in liquid consumption.
Drinking lots of water is the healthiest way to quench your thirst during pregnancy. It is also the best way to stay hydrated. Carry water around with you wherever you go. Avoid salty foods and caffeine, which can increase your thirst. Other drinks that are good for your baby include milk, which provides both your body and your baby’s body with calcium, and vegetable or fruit juices.
All those liquids may cause swelling, especially during the third trimester. By this time, your body contains an extra 20 lbs of fluid, according to AskDrSears.com. For this reason, it is common for pregnant women to experience a little swelling in the feet, ankles, and hands from water retention. This is preferable to the alternative, which is dehydration. Your body will take water from your intestines, causing constipation, if you don’t drink enough. Dehydration can also cause headaches, irritability and even premature labor, according to Pregnancy Today.
Excessive thirst during pregnancy can be a symptom of a severe condition called gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes occurs when the body cannot produce enough insulin for both the mother and baby. Most pregnant women are automatically tested for this condition around the 24th week of pregnancy. Still, if you have a dramatic increase in thirst, along with other symptoms such as tiredness and blurred vision, see a doctor right away.
Diabetes During Pregnancy: What is Gestational Diabetes?