Guide to wristbands for nausea
All pregnant women experience morning sickness to a different degree. For some, it truly is just in the morning. It sometimes clears up after eating breakfast and stays away for most, if not all, of the day. For other women, they can be sick morning, noon, and night. It seems that calling this side effect “morning sickness” might have been a misnomer. Sometimes, morning sickness resolves after the first trimester and you start to feel human again but, for some other women, they’re sick from the beginning to end of their pregnancy.
Nausea during pregnancy is a hard thing to cope with, especially if it sticks with you all day and has lasted well into the second trimester. You’re very limited to the medications you can take when you’re pregnant and most anti-nausea meds will require a prescription from your doctor. There are so many things that are beyond your control when you’re pregnant and morning sickness is just one more thing you have to muddle through.
Or is it?
What’s a girl to do when she just can’t handle it anymore? There are various morning sickness bands on the market today that claim to alleviate morning sickness without the use of any medications.
How Do They Work?
While these bands might not be effective for everyone, there are some studies that show that they are a legitimate remedy for morning sickness. There are two different methods that these bands use to be effective:
- Neuromodulation: This is a way of using the body’s neural pathways to control nausea. These devices pulse into the underside of the wrist and initiate the body’s natural pathway by traveling through the median nerve, up the arm, and into the brain. You’ll feel a slight numbness in your palm and middle fingers if it’s working correctly.
Once the median nerve is stimulated and the signals go to the brain, they travel back into the body through the vagus nerve, which is the direct connection from the brain to the stomach. This helps normal gastric function be restored and the causes the morning sickness to subside.
- Acupressure: Bands that use this method use pressure and/or electricity to stimulate the P6 acupressure point on the underside of the wrist. People who practice acupressure believe that this point is tied to nausea and vomiting and that stimulating it will bring relief.
The Reliefband uses neuromodulation to stimulate the nervous system to bring morning sickness to an end. The concept of neuromodulation is something that is starting to be more common in medicine. For example, implanted devices have been developed that use neuromodulation to treat peripheral nerve pain. These medical devices have been cleared by the FDA.
The technology in Reliefband has been cleared as safe and effective to use in the treatment of things like peripheral nerve pain. No conclusion should be drawn from this as to the band’s effectiveness, only that the FDA allows neuromodulation to be used in clinical settings to treat other ailments. This also does not mean that the Reliefband is FDA approved, as that is a different regulatory status.
The Reliefband resembles a wristwatch. It’s a teardrop shape with a central power button and a range of small lights numbered one through five. The black nylon band attaches it to your wrist just like a watchband, only the large surface sits on the inside of your wrist where it’s on top of your median nerve.
Clean the inside of your wrist then apply a small drop of the gel. Put the device on and press the power button. Gradually increase the power until you can feel tingling in your palm and middle finger. It shouldn’t hurt, but you should be aware of it.
Leave your Reliefband turned on until you nausea subsides. You shouldn’t leave it on for long periods of time because it can lead to skin irritation or other possible side effects.
The Sea Band uses acupressure to fight morning sickness naturally and without medication. The band goes around your wrist and a small stud in the inside holds pressure on the P6 point which has been proven to stop nausea and vomiting.
This band is made of a stretchy elastic material. To find proper placement, line up your first three fingers against the base of your hand. P6 lies right to the edge of the farthest finger from your palm. Place the stud there and position the band to hold it in place.
Sometimes, acupressure will begin to work right away while other times it might take a few minutes or even hours. This is a very individualized process and everyone’s body will react differently. If you don’t feel relief right away, give it some time and see if it starts to have any effect.
Psi Bands also use acupressure to relieve morning sickness. This style is adjustable and resembles a watch band without a watch. The button on the inside should be placed at P6 – three finger widths up from the base of the hand. The band should fit snugly but should not be tight.
What’s different about the PSI bands is there’s a dial that controls the pressure of the button. Between that and the adjustable closure, these bands can effectively work on wrists of all different sizes.
With Psi Bands, you purchase them in sets of two and they recommend you wear both at the same time. They come in seven different patterns and look a little more stylish that most of the other bands on the market.
Feel Better All Day Long
Morning sickness is something that can happen at any time of day. Most women get some relief around fourteen weeks while some women suffer from nausea throughout their entire pregnancy. Nausea bands, like the Reliefband and the others covered here, might not work for everyone. But if you’re suffering, you should know that there are plenty of people who swear by these bands for relief.
For more pregnancy concerns, visit our pregnancy category archives. If you’re concerned about nausea, sometimes a fresh carbonated beverage can help, in which case you might consider buying a home sparkling water maker for cheap bubbly drinks.