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Journey into the world of hyperemesis gravidarum...
29Nov 13

My New Look!

Woop woop! Check out my new logo and look... it's taken a while to get to this point. Well, "Spewing Mummy" as a concept isn't the easiest thing to summarise in a logo so kudos to Paul at Revival Design.

I'm sure I don't need to point out to sufferers the intricate symbolism ingrained in every aspect of the logo and design - I think it speaks volumes.

I've only got to this point thanks to the incredible support and thanks I get from my readers which drives me on to keep up the fight for hyperemesis sufferers around the globe! I'm reminded daily of how far we have yet to go to achieve the status for hyperemesis care which the condition and it's sufferers deserves. But I am also reminded, perhaps less frequently, of how far we have come and for that I am so grateful and proud. Without hyperemesis sufferers around the nation, indeed the globe, uniting we would not be making the impressive waves that we are. The future is already looking brighter for our daughters - soon we'll be surfing!

So to that end come and like my new Facebook Page to proudly take up your membership of the The Spewing Mummy Club!

You can also follow the Spewing Mummy Club on Twitter and follow this blog via email with the form on the right hand side.

Thank you all so much

Spewing Mummy xxx

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I love the new look, it's great. Well done and keep up the fantastic work x
Mummy Whiskers, 29th November 2013

Paul strikes again! How does he get it so right every time!? I guess that's why I am NOT a graphic designer.
Helen Hendy, 30th November 2013

Thanks Katrina, will do :)
Spewing Mummy, 2nd December 2013

I know, he's a genius right? I, on the other hand, just tried to spell genius 9 times before getting close enough for the computer to even be able to help me!
Spewing Mummy, 2nd December 2013

28Nov 13

Lets talk about bums...

I've talked a lot in the past about products which don't help relieve pregnancy sickness despite pseudo-science claiming they do. But that's not to say there aren't products out there that can genuinely help make your pregnancy more tolerable. This one has nothing to do with pregnancy sickness or relieving nausea but...

Anyone who has been pregnant, particularly those who have done it more than once will likely know all about the horrors of haemorrhoids! 75% of pregnant women get them – the same amount of women who get pregnancy sickness to any degree – We just don't talk about our bums like we do “morning sickness” which is why the moment you realise that's what's going on down there is so dire – It's a right of passage (excuse the pun) which you simply weren't expecting!

Women with hyperemesis gravidarum are possibly more likely to suffer haemorrhoids (piles) due to prolonged and severe dehydration and medications which cause constipation (Ondansetron is a bitch for that!). Also, the inevitable inactivity and being housebound perhaps makes it worse too. It seems horrifically unfair that on top of constant nausea, regular vomiting and all the other grimness of hyperemesis that you should discover the nightmare of haemorrhoids! I don't have any research to back up a direct correlation between hyperemesis and haemorrhoids but there is plenty of evidence that hyperemesis causes dehydrations, dehydration causes constipation and constipation exacerbates haemorrhoids.

If you've managed to avoid piles through pregnancy and childbirth then you may as well read on anyway as once you hit 40 years of age you've got a 50% chance of getting them anyway... Yippie!

While I was at the Royal College of Midwife conference a couple of weeks ago I noticed a product being displayed which claims to help reduce and prevent piles; it's called HemorRite. I dunno whether it's my nursing background or my up front attitude but people seem to talk to me about all sorts from contraception queries to piles on a regular basis... So I happen to know a number of potential testers for this product (you'll be relieved to know that haemorrhoids tend to clear up after pregnancy for the majority of women – until the natural ageing process brings them back... I'm not at that point yet luckily!).

The product is a thing which you put in the freezer for a couple of hours and then pop on or up your bum... chilly but soothing I should think! It comes with lube you'll be pleased to hear and also a case for keeping it hygienically in the freezer – the last thing that will help either haemorrhoids or hyperemesis is a bout of e-coli from the frozen peas!

It works by causing vaso-constriction to shrink the piles (they are veins which are swollen) and also just straight forward relieves the pain and discomfort. It's completely safe for pregnancy. You use it for 8 minutes for the best effect.

So... I asked my anonymous tester (who is fairly new to the delights of piles but has recently tried a number of over the counter treatments) for their view on the HemorRite product. Here is what they said:

“To start with it's so damn cold that it kind of hurts but you soon get used to it and the relief it gives you after using it is worth it. I preferred it to suppositories and creams anyway as I don't like using them really, they're kind of yucky. I don't know if long term it will actually get rid of them but the relief lasts a fair old while”

It's quite expensive at nearly £25 but it lasts 6 months and if you've got them bad you can use it up to 4 times a day to start with and then twice a day after that so I guess you rapidly save the cost of alternatives.


So there you have it... a product that definitely won't help pregnancy sickness but may well help the haemorrhoids that follow months of dehydration, starvation and medication.

For stockists see their website: http://www.hemorrite.co.uk/where-to-buy/ or you can buy it on Amazon:
 

.

NB. Although I was given the product for free I haven't received any payment for this review and I wouldn't have written it if I didn't think the product was any good... all views are my own (accept for that of my anonymous tester!).

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22Nov 13

Siblings - in perspective

This post is a reaction to a thread I read on the facebook support group last night. It made me sad and I was thinking about it in the early hours of the morning. The thread was about a lady who has miscarried after 3 weeks of severe hyperemesis gravidarum. This was her second child, a sibling for her 6 year old. She now feels she can not go through it again and that her child will have to remain as an only child. She is heart broken. This is a common story I hear and many HG babies are only children. Women often feel huge guilt and distress at "failing to give their child a sibling", something which society seems to think is essential! 
 
So – I want to address this issue and look at the sibling relationship. I am one of three children and I have three children myself. So what do I know about only children I hear you ask? Well, I know a fair few only children, some are now adults and some are still children with close and loving friendships with my children. I also know people who are heavily burdened by unavoidable relationships with siblings. But you're right... I'm not the right person to write this post.
 
So I called one of my adult “only child” friends to ask for his perspective. So here is my lovely, generous, unspoilt and unselfish and sociable friend Mat on being an only child:


"I'm 37 and never once in my life have I wished for a sibling. Being an only child was a truly wonderful experience - I had my parents' undivided attention the whole time! My friends were jealous that I didn't have to share a bedroom with an annoying sibling, wear their hand-me-down clothes or drag along a younger brother in tow every time we went out to play.

Let me dispel some myths about being an only child:

  • They'll be lonely. I was never short of friends to play with, and formed a really close bond with my parents because there wasn't another sibling to compete with for their time. Presumably you're going to let them have friends? 
  • They'll be spoiled. It's true that I got more presents on my birthday than some of my friends with lots of siblings, but that's because my parents weren't so strapped for cash only having one child. According to this survey, raising a child costs an average of £148,000. Are you sure you want more than one? 
  • They'll be anti-social. To be honest I find this quite insulting. I've met anti-social only children, yes, but I've also met very anti-social people who have siblings! Bring up your only child in a loving environment and they'll be well-rounded individuals, just like you. 
  • They'll miss having the kind of relationship that having a sibling provides. I've formed a number of life-long friendships with people that I consider to be closer than a brother or sister, people to whom I'd donate bone marrow or a kidney without a second thought. I know people who have/had unpleasant, even abusive relationships with their siblings and they're not alone
  • "They won't have a brother or sister to help look after me when I'm old." Seriously? If you're just having kids so they can care for you later in life, you're probably so selfish that they won't want to look after you.

If I've got one regret from my childhood, I wish I'd had a puppy."

For links to other blogs about one child families and people to hook up with on twitter check out this post on Amanda's Patch about their decision to not have more children.  

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What a very grown-up attitude - well said that only son...
Lesley, 22nd November 2013

I brought up as an only child. I was very much loved by my mum and dad. But I missed the company of a sibling. When all my friends went home they had others for company, to help with home work and to stick up for them.later in life I was the one to make desisions when my parents were ill with no one else to help share the care ect. My poor husband had to help and he was great.And although I have four young children when my parents died I felt a loneliness that I cannot explain.I v always been a person who doesn't,t mind sharing ,I,m very sociable . I find it hard to understand sibling rivalry. I,m a palliative care nurse and I see different relationships with siblings all the time. I think everyone should make their own choices. Because we all get handed different situations in life. My daughter has HG. And although I wished for grand children but to see her go through this .I would take my wishes back. But I know hopefully the outcome will be worth it. It's twins so I hope she,ll never have to do it again. I,v just given her your book. Thanks for producing it. I think we should al leave our copy's in a maternity ward.when we leave. X
Wilma frew, 22nd November 2014

21Nov 13

Look how far we have come!

Last week I attended the Annual Conference for the Royal College of Midwives. It was incredible. I met literally hundreds of midwives and student midwives, gave out hundreds of leaflets and posters and made valuable contacts with other organisations. The profile of hyperemesis gravidarum is on the increase!

I've just been reading through my blogpost archive and nearly two years ago I talked about the plans we had for Pregnancy Sickness Support, developing a support network and an online education program for midwives. I'm blown away by how far we have come since then! Support network? BOOM! We've got nearly 180 volunteers across the UK and in the last 5 months we've helped over 200 sufferers find peer support. It's now run smoothly and efficiently by a national volunteer coordinator. On top of that is the thousands of women getting help from the website and forum – over 11,000 unique visitors last month!

But what of the Healthcare Professional online training? Well it's remained just outside of our grasp due to the cost of platforms to run it and ways of reaching the people who need it... until now. Contacts made at the Conference last week could turn that around if we can provide the content – easy! Having hosted a hyperemesis gravidarum conference in September the Charity already has masses of content for HCP's. I've also been asked to author a couple more articles in reputable midwifery journals.


And what of other plans? What's next for the Spewing Mummy and her mission? Well, they'll be no more pregnancies for me that's for sure... but watch this space for developments, my new logo will be up soon and I have plans in the pipeline to help more and more women with hyperemesis gravidarum. We have a long way to go to get the condition recognised as much as it should be and for care to be consistent and of a high standard, but we are getting there... and faster than I thought possible!

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12Nov 13

Royal College of Midwives Conference 2013

What an honour! Representing the voice of women with Hyperemesis Gravidarum from across the UK at the RCM Conference.

What an opportunity! To get to speak to over 1,000 midwives or student midwives about pregnancy sickness and how they can help women. 

That is what I'm doing this week. Pregnancy Sickness Support has a stall and I am there fronting it. Armed with leaflets, posters, pens and a survey to gather crucial data I'm raising awareness and spreading the word so that women treated by these proactive and dedicated midwives will be less alone. 

Midwives can't refer to services they don't know about which is why it is so crucial we are there. If their out of date lecturers and mentors teach them nonsense about psychological causes and no safe treatments then we can undo that with our presence at this conference.

Over 1,000 midwives and each of them have lots of colleagues and will go on to mentor student midwives. Every one of those midwives see scores of women and will regularly come across women with hyperemesis. Hopefully after meeting us they will not only have greater confidence treating sufferers but they will be able to refer women women to PSS so they can get the support they deserve and need.

I'll update you with how it went later this week...

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06Nov 13

10 things NOT to say while your partner is spewing up...

I saw a post on Parentdish this morning about what not to say while your parent is in labour. My husband was great during labour and I was lucky to have really lovely home birth experiences for all three. However, having clocked up over 2,000 vomits across three pregnancies Mr Spewing Mummy was bound to say the odd faux pas every now and again while I had my head down the loo. To be fair, he didn't say all of these... just a few!
 
So while most of these, except 9 and 10 (I hope), are acceptable to say to someone puking after a heavy night out, under no circumstances should they be said near a woman with hyperemesis gravidarum! You've been warned....
  1. Can you keep the noise down.... Er no!
  2. Ew! Those cornflakes look just the same as before you ate them - Gee, thanks for the commentary!
  3. Wow that sick really stinks - If emptying my sick bowl by all means think it, just don't say it!
  4. Better out than in - NOT helpful, particularly when nothing has stayed in for weeks and behind the constant nausea is a feeling of constant hunger!
  5. Well that's put me off my lunch - Oh boo hoo for you!!!
  6. I though you said you hadn't eaten anything? - Ouch, a touch of the not believing! Not just the wrong thing to say but outright nasty.
  7. You ought to be used to it by now - Hmmm... How about I keep hitting you with a stick and see if you get used to it...
  8. Did you spill some water? - Erm no but you've just added to my humiliation.
  9. Don't puke the baby up! - Yeah I know you're trying to be funny but it's really not!
  10. Well – you wanted this pregnancy - OUCH! Yeah I wanted a pregnancy but I never asked for HG!

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Fund Hyperemesis Research

The Book

Hyperemesis Gravidarum - The Definitive Guide by Caitlin Dean

The Kids Book

Hoe to be an HG Hero by Caitlin Dean

About Me

I am mother of three beautiful children and wife to a fantastic and supportive husband. I am a nurse, a farmer and a trustee for Pregnancy Sickness Support. I love working hard and spending time with my kids.

About this blog

Information and support for pregnancy sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum. Views are my own and do not represent those of any other organisation. Information provided here should not be a substitute for medical advice. My aim is to raise awareness and encourage sufferers to know they are not alone.

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