Olfaction…the sense of smell! If you are already thinking of food aromas, fine scents to go with your potpourri, or the heavenly perfumes that you use at the spa, I bet you are in for some olfactory indulgence. But, not while you are pregnant!
Because pregnant women get ‘beary’. Their heightened sense of smell can be so overwhelming that it will knock off a grizzly bear’s ability to smell a thing from 18 miles away. It can be just about anything around, unlike the scavenging activity of a bear. It will include the things that you can’t see. Phantom smell! Yes, but somehow you perceive it. Apparently you can get the whiff of the smallest molecule in the air! So the scent-sniffing can lead to gags and loads of them.
The worst part is the first trimester. It is when the ‘phantom smells’ can go down the gut and make you throw up anything you had in the morning. You will detest everything around you for no apparent reason. Added to it there will be no prescribed smells to avoid. It will be an individual thing. And coupled with morning sickness, it will drive you nuts.
I remember being lectured by my dietician during the first trimester. I had begun to smell the foods only with the mention of the names. It seemed like scores of incompatible foods were dancing in front of me. Before I could gag right there, I nearly long jumped over my husband sitting adjacent to me (in the process got a tang of his deodorant) and scurried to the nearest washroom. So, I can’t say as to mentions of what foods caused the gag. But they definitely got me stir-crazy. And nevertheless I will list out a lot other things that I heard from friends and other pregnant women to best avoid the smells of:
1. Car Interiors:
Pregnancy will make you car-sick. From the leather seats to the air-freshener, the carpet to the accessories, you will not be able to stand any of these smells. A word of advice – don’t wind up the windows. Turn the AC off. Get some fresh air. Carry sickness bag and wipes (not that you want to invite the event, but just in case).
2. Paints, Kerosene, And Petrol:
Most of these things smell alike! And while many women will dislike them even under normal conditions, strangely enough, I have always found them interesting J . Personally, they have never put me off, but many of you out there will go ballistic with these ‘stenches’.
3. Pet Smell:
Your pets will be all over you, perhaps will also wake you up with the ‘good morning’ licks. And you will be ready for the next gag!
The beauty products are supposed to mesmerize you! But not this time around. Don’t even accidentally hit that beauty corner in the mall. You are more likely to run amok.
5. Your Partner’s Body Odor Puts You Off:
Isn’t it why he puts the deo on? Sadly the deo repels you instead. And then his odor repels you. You will ask him to shower on a wintery night. He will yield to the demand. And yet you will smell some bizarre condiments he had in the past few days.
6. Your Own Discharges:
You find yourself mucky with this part. And with the nostrils snooping about, you will want to stick in the shower forever.
Yes, the smoky sticks. They are good enough to choke you. Although some find it pretty nice even during pregnancy, smoke of any form isn’t good for your baby. So if it puts you off, it’s a good sign!
8. Fish And Meat:
I have it on good authority from my carnivorous friends how much the deli counters at a supermarket were enough to raise hell when the passed there with their bumps.
I always thought menthol is pretty relaxing. But it could be quite the contrast to many.
I am not restricting this list to the edible alcohol (hard drinks) that some may find atrocious on their taste buds this time around. But I am also talking about alcohol as in chemicals, for instance, a hand-sanitizer or a disinfectant.
Wonder why this could be hard on your olfaction. But right from your toothpaste to mouth fresheners (that I would invariably carry to work to keep away pregnancy nausea) contain mint.
Some cheese can be extraordinarily smelly around this period. Goat cheese – you think you will fancy this?
The trick to overcoming the olfactory offenses during pregnancy is to avoid the place or the source of odor that stirs you a bit. Another thing you can do is have citrus fruits or juice (they are perfect gag counters). Don’t stay on an empty stomach, munch on salty crackers. If at home, lying down on your left side is the safest bet.
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