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Does Morning Sickness Feel Like The Flu?

Morning sickness is a condition that occurs in the sixth week of pregnancy. It is a natural condition that is seen in most pregnant ladies. It usually starts in the morning that disappears later in the day. But, in some pregnant ladies, it can present in the whole day and may remain till the baby is delivered. Stomach flu is an infectious disease of the abdomen. They have similar symptoms. They can be differentiated from each other by their symptoms and intensity. Morning sickness does not need treatment whereas medical aid is needed for the cure of stomach flu.

Does Morning Sickness Feel Like The Flu?

Does Morning Sickness Feel Like The Flu?

Morning sickness is a condition that appears in pregnancy. It is one of the early signs of pregnancy. It starts in the first trimester (first three months) and ends at the start of the second trimester (second three months). However, it can continue to rest of the trimesters in the pregnancy in a few cases. It does not start in the first week of pregnancy. Almost 90 percent of pregnant ladies develop morning sickness in their pregnancy. In the majority of pregnant women, it starts near the sixth week of pregnancy, roughly three weeks after conception or two weeks after the missed period.

Morning sickness is not a disease. It does not cause any harm to the baby or pregnant women. It is usually mild or moderate that causes weakness. It usually does not need treatment and gets better if the pregnant women rests full and takes small meals in small intervals. No medicine is required in such situations.

Morning sickness has similar symptoms to stomach flu or other stomach ailments. Both of them cause nausea, vomiting, and fatigue. Morning sickness is not an illness. It may feel like stomach flu. But they are not the same thing. Morning sickness can be differentiated from stomach ailments by following points-

Fever– most of the stomach ailments including stomach flu represent fever. Stomach flu is an infectious condition. This may raise the temperature of the body. Fever is rarely experienced in the morning sickness until it is accompanied by other ailments or infection.

Diarrhea– stomach flu can cause indigestion and watery motions or diarrhea. Morning sickness never causes loose motion or diarrhea until there is an excess intake of iron in the mother’s diet. Iron is not really needed in the first trimester for the development of the baby. Folic acid is needed and intake of sufficient folic acid in the first trimester can relieve morning sickness too.

Stomach Cramps– stomach flu is the infection of the stomach. It may represent itself with cramps in the abdomen that makes the affected person feel uneasy. Morning sickness does not cause abdominal cramps.

Bodyache– as the stomach flu is an infectious disease; it causes pain in the body due to feverish condition. Morning sickness does not have such symptoms.

Chills– stomach flu causes chills along with fever which is absent in morning sickness.

Dehydration – stomach flu causes loss of water through vomiting and diarrhea. It may disturb the electrolytic balance in the body. Morning sickness usually does not cause dehydration to this extent. It is possible that in cases of severe morning sickness, dehydration may happen.

Stomach flu does not extend more than two to three days to a week. It requires treatment to relieve the symptoms. Morning sickness is a natural condition that remains slightly longer for two to three weeks or more. It gets off by itself before the start of the second trimester. It does not require specific treatment. It can be managed with home remedies.


Morning sickness and stomach flu have similar symptoms but they are not the same. Both of them show vomiting, nausea and tiredness or lethargy. Morning sickness is not an illness but stomach flu is an infectious condition. Fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps appear in the stomach flu which is absent in morning sickness.


  1. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). (2021). Morning Sickness: Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy. https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/morning-sickness-nausea-and-vomiting-of-pregnancy
  2. American Pregnancy Association. (2021). Morning Sickness During Pregnancy. https://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-health/morning-sickness-during-pregnancy/

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 16, 2023

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