Heartburn, constipation, and hemorrhoids are among the most common complaints of pregnancy. Luckily, there are several drug-free solutions you can use to prevent these problems. To head off heartburn, avoid eating large meals, especially in the evening, and opt for smaller, more frequent ones instead. You should also steer clear of rich, fried, or spicy foods, which often trigger stomach irritation. Sleeping on an incline can also prevent the contents of your stomach from splashing into your esophagus, causing heartburn.
If symptoms persist, your doctor may recommend a safe antacid, such as calcium carbonate (Tums). But if further relief is needed, your doctor may suggest sucralfate, commonly known as Carafate, a drug that coats and protects the stomach lining.
To prevent constipation and the hemorrhoids that often follow, drink plenty of water and eat fiber-rich foods. Exercise, with your doctor's approval, can also help to keep constipation at bay. If problems persist, your doctor may suggest a bulk-fiber laxative, such as Metamucil or Fiberall. However, you should avoid stimulant laxatives, like castor oil, which can trigger labor. When treating hemorrhoids, use products that contain glycerin or witch hazel, but avoid hydrocortisone, which hasn't proven to be entirely safe and can be absorbed into your system.