Brides: How NOT to Faint at the Altar

fainting bride - wedding tips

Many brides and also some grooms fear that they will faint once they are standing at the altar. And yes, it does happen, but it’s still pretty rare. That’s because most people aren’t prone to fainting – the brides, grooms, bridesmaids, and groomsmen who do faint often do so because of nerves or because they’ve been neglecting to eat or skipping meals on purpose. We have all the sympathy in the world for anyone who has a medical issue that causes fainting but when it comes to the overzealous dieters, we say EAT! You need energy to get married!

Here are a ton of great tips to keep in mind as you plan your wedding, just in case you do feel you might just “keel” over at the altar or on the dance floor:

  • The night before the wedding, pack smelling salts and give them to your officiant, maid of honor or best man. Make sure they will be close in case you need them.
  • The day of the wedding, avoid eating very heavy meals but do eat lightly throughout the day. In any case, make sure you eat ENOUGH. Don’t try to lose those last few pounds on your wedding day.
  • Eat chicken or fish, cold salads, cheese and crackers, toast, scrambled eggs, bagels, and lightly seasoned pasta dishes (avoiding spicy tomato sauces because of the risk of heartburn) like pasta in light olive oil with veggies.
  • Avoid gas-producing foods such as beans, cauliflower and broccoli. Obviously.
  • This may sound crazy, but eating salty foods like popcorn, potato chips and salty pretzels an hour before your wedding will help you to retain water, eliminating the urge to have to go to the bathroom.
  • When standing, never lock your knees and stand with your legs apart even with your shoulders, knees relaxed.
  • Request chairs or a place to sit at the altar be provided so that if you do feel overcome with dizziness, you will be able to sit.
  • Take advantage of the prayers. Bend your head and breath slowly and deeply inhaling and exhaling to a slow, mental count of 7.
  • Lean on your fiancé if you must.
  • Dress for the season. If you are marrying in the colder months, do not wear a summer gown. You should feel comfortable. If you are marrying in the warmer months, avoid heavy under clothes such as crinolines and petticoats.
  • Your dress should fit you comfortably, not too tight.
  • Choose a gown with short or no sleeves (if your Officiant allows). If you must choose a gown with sleeves, make sure they are loosely fitted, lacy or illusion material. Make sure your dress lets you “breath”.
  • Choose shoes that will let you stand comfortably and do make sure they are broken in. If you must, take them to a shoemaker and have them stretched so that they aren’t binding on your wedding day.
  • Avoid heavy scents and perfumes, which are overly sweet smelling. They can overcome your senses and make you feel nauseous if you are dizzy.
  • Have water available and close by.
  • If you do feel that none of this is helping, simply whisper to your Officiant that you feel faint and have him/her seat you and your bridal party.
  • Ask to bring in fans if air circulation or air conditioning is a problem.
  • Relaxing is the most important thing you can do to avoid fainting during your wedding.
  • Before walking down the aisle, you may find that a short “loosening up” is in order. Shake your arms and legs and do a few head and neck rolls. You may look funny, but it helps.