Most Common Men Pregnancy Symptoms Explained

Most Common Men Pregnancy Symptoms Explained

Bringing new life into the world is both thrilling and terrifying, especially for first-time parents. It's not just moms who feel the pangs of pregnancy — some otherwise healthy dads can experience physical symptoms too.

Couvade syndrome, also commonly called sympathetic pregnancy, is the phenomenon in which the partner will experience some of the same symptoms and behavior as the pregnant partner.

When a woman gets pregnant, her body goes through many physiological changes. She has to adjust to a rapid change in hormones that can cause extreme mood swings. She's carrying a new life inside her body and as a result, she may experience nausea or even vomiting. In addition, she'll have to make adjustments in her eating habits and possibly endure morning sickness and fatigue. Her partner will most likely be involved in some of those changes as well!

The term couvade comes from the French word for "to hatch," a reference to male birds who sit on their eggs until they hatch. In the case of couvade syndrome, men go through all the same symptoms that their pregnant partners do—they have nausea and vomiting (in the case of more severe cases), they may be fatigued, they may gain weight (especially around the waist), they may be constipated or have trouble urinating, and they could even deliver their baby prematurely if their stress is high enough.

Couvade affects around 30 percent of couples who are expecting. It's typically thought to be caused by hormones that are released during pregnancy, but no one can say for certain why it happens. Some experts believe that couvade might have evolved from an instinctual need for males to contribute more caretaking to their mates while they're pregnant.

To better understand couvade syndrome, it's important to know which symptoms men are prone to experiencing when their partners are pregnant and to openly discuss these feelings. That way, you can both do your best to navigate this exciting, albeit stressful period in your lives.

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Are you wondering how early a man can experience pregnancy symptoms? Luckily for you, we've outlined the top four most common pregnancy symptoms in expectant fathers and how to manage them.

1. Morning Sickness

Men can also get morning sickness when wife gets pregnant as a part of dads pregnancy symptoms
Morning sickness or stomach upset is a common symptom amongst men when the wife is pregnant.

Morning Sickness - The Top Pregnancy Symptom for Men

Approximately two thirds of women experience nausea or vomiting — a.k.a morning sickness — during the first trimester of pregnancy. Some studies hypothesize that the purpose of morning sickness is to protect the fragile embryo by causing women to expel potentially harmful toxins in foods.

A psychoanalytical theory suggests men experience sympathetic morning sickness due to their envy of the woman's ability to create life in her body. While it's certainly an interesting theory, there's not much scientific evidence that substantiates this claim or any other reason as to why expectant fathers experience nausea and vomiting alongside their pregnant partners.

Need a natural remedy to combat morning sickness symptoms for both mom and dad?

Brew a cup of ginger tea in the morning. Ginger root's active compound, gingerol reduces nausea and has anti-inflammatory properties to improve digestion.

Ginger tea is easy to make: Boil water, add crushed ginger root (about 1 tsp. or 2" chunk) to a cup, steep it for at least 3 minutes, and then strain into another cup. Add honey if desired. Drink warm or cold.

You can add ginger to your diet in other ways, too—sucking on a piece of candied ginger is a popular alternative to drugs like Dramamine or Bonine.

You can also pay attention to nausea triggers such as certain foods and scents and try to avoid them around the house. And don't forget to drink plenty of water throughout the day to remain hydrated.

2. Mood Swings

Mood swing is another dad pregnancy symptom
Mood swing is another symptom seen in would be Dads.

Mood Swings - It Happens in Men Also

hanks to science, we understand that a surge of pregnancy hormones in a woman's body is partly responsible for the wide range of emotional changes she may experience. Interestingly, men with couvade syndrome are reported to experience the side effects of pregnancy hormone changes too, which include intensified mood swings — elated or calm one moment to suddenly irritable and upset the next. However, there aren't any definitive studies on the cause for couvade syndrome mood swings.

These male mood swings can be tricky to navigate for both partners, as pregnancy can be a particularly stressful point in expectant parents' lives. The best way to manage this symptom for both parties is to talk things out and express yourself openly with your partner.

There are a lot of things that can help you stay on top of your mood, including getting enough sleep, managing your stress levels, and eating a balanced diet. But did you know that the sunlight you get during the day can also impact how you feel? There's a connection between light and your body's natural internal clock—called your circadian rhythm—that can have an effect on whether you're feeling good or bad. A lack of light, for instance, can make it harder to sleep at night, which can contribute to feeling sluggish and down in the dumps during the day.

On the other hand, bright light exposure in the morning—or even just a brief exposure to natural light—can help get your mood back on track and make it easier for you to feel positive throughout the day.

3. Weight Gain

Would be fathers could also gain weight due to stress and overeating
Would be Dads tend to eat more and gain weight due to pregnancy stress.

Male Symptoms of Pregnancy - Weight Gain

A British study found that expectant fathers gained 14 lbs on average during their partner's pregnancy. An online survey following up on the study came up with these reasons why men experienced this weight gain:

  • Dining out more frequently
  • New snack options in the house to accomodate hormonal food cravings
  • Make their partners feel better about their own weight gain
  • Serving larger portions as the expectant mom is now eating for two

How can you control sympathetic pregnancy weight gain?

Since there's no concrete explanation as to why some men experience couvade syndrome, it's tricky to pin down exactly what's going on in the body that causes these symptoms in men.

The best advice we can offer here is to have expectant fathers work on managing their stress levels.

How many times have you asked yourself, "Am I ready for this?" when you were expecting a child? As the child develops, so do its needs. But sometimes, we can't always understand exactly what we need to do in order to make things easier for ourselves and our children. A few changes in our lives can make the transition from pre-parenthood to parenthood go smoother. These changes involve us getting rid of old habits and establishing new ones.

It's normal for people to experience stress when preparing for a major life event like parenthood. But having the right tools in place (like learning how to relax) can help you deal with stress before it gets out of hand. It's time to prepare yourself for your new role as a parent.

Here are some excellent stress management tips for men experiencing pregnancy symptoms:

  • Prioritize what's important in your life and make time for it and eliminate stressful tasks
  • Avoid caffeine late into the afternoon
  • Avoid alcohol, which increases cortisol (stress hormone) levels in the body
  • Exercise — exercising releases endorphins (feel good hormones)
  • Box breathing — box breathing is a technique in where you practice taking slow deep breaths to focus the mind

4. Unexplained Aches And Pains

Unexplained aches and pains are common dad pregnancy symptoms
Many would be Dads tend to feel different kind of pain in their body while their partner is pregnant.

Expectant fathers can sometimes experience leg cramps, back pain, headaches, and other unexplainable pains from couvade syndrome. Again, there's not enough research conducted as to why these physical symptoms appear — but you'll have to learn how to roll with these punches as they come.

Some studies speculate that these symptoms could very well be psychological as an uncontrollable urge to compete with the mother because of the important role they will have in their child's life.

No matter the reason for why your partner is experiencing pain, be sympathetic and offer your support when you can.

His body may not be undergoing the same hormonal changes as your body — but his symptoms aren't to be ignored. Having open communication throughout the pregnancy will help both of you cope through these pregnancy symptoms and strengthen your bond all the more.

Give him the love and attention that he needs to feel better by being a source of comfort for him.

He'll reciprocate by being the person you count on most while pregnant too.

Above all, you need to take care of yourself, not only during pregnancy but post pregnancy too. Invest in a comfortable postpartum recovery plan with a Bellefit postpartum girdle. These girdles are so much more than high-quality shape wear undergarments — they provide medical-grade compression to ease postpartum pain, provide abdominal and back support, and can help you confidently fit into your slimmer clothes.

Your body goes through incredible changes during pregnancy and again in your recovery as your uterus shrinks back to size and your hormones adjust to baseline. While losing your pregnancy weight will take a lot of hard work and persistence, you can depend on the support of Bellefit girdles.

Girdles may conjure images of 1950s housewives, but they have found a place in the modern world as well—and not just as a piece of clothing to be worn under another article of clothing. Girdles are now used to provide medical-grade compression and support that can ease postpartum pain and help you confidently fit into your slimmer clothes. Plus, they're so much more comfortable than they used to be!

Shapewear has been around since the beginning of time, and its purpose has been to make people feel comfortable in their own skin. It doesn't matter whether you're a celebrity or not — you deserve to feel good about how you look. Shapewear is one of those things that can be life-changing because of how much confidence it gives you.

No matter what odd symptoms come your way as expectant parents, just know that you'll come out of it together much stronger — and all worries will disappear when you gaze into the eyes of your newborn baby.

We would love to hear back your experiences related to couvade or sympathetic pregnancy symptoms. Don't hesitate to share back anything we might have missed.

This entry was posted in Lifestyle, Medical Conditions, Pregnancy . Bookmark the permalink.
Cynthia Suarez

  • Feb 24, 2020
  • Category: News
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