There are plenty of things to keep track of when you’re pregnant, from things to do and things not to do while pregnant. Some women find it very easy to keep doing the right during their pregnancies but some women find it very difficult. It could be because this is their first pregnancy or because of personal problems.
There aren’t many hard and fast rules about things to do and things to avoid during pregnancy, beyond the obvious like no smoking and drugs. But for the most part, it varied from woman to woman. Since the health of both the mother and the baby are essential, here are our list of things not to do while pregnant.
Don’t Paint the New Nursery Room
We know that mothers are always so excited about their newborns and since they have prepared a room for the baby, they can’t wait to decorate and make it more interesting. But there is no way to measure toxicity from actual exposure to paint, so it’s recommended to stay away from paint completely.
Paint toxicity depends on the paint’s solvents and chemicals mixed as part of the ingredient to make it, and also the exposure. It can be assumed that household painting has a low exposure level, the safest solution is to reduce the exposure to the fumes from these paints to zero. Better ask the husband or other people to paint the walls.
Avoid Certain Medicines
Some medications can be harmful for you and the baby. It can affect the baby’s growth during the pregnancy. Some women can’t take the stress over being pregnant and resort to consume some kinds of medications, not knowing that it can be harmful. Always consult to your doctor, before buying and consuming any over-the-counter or prescription medications and supplements.
Avoid Hot Tub and Sauna
Relaxing in hot water may sound like a good idea at first, but experts have said that hot tubs and saunas should be avoided. According to the American Pregnancy Association, hot tubs can cause hyperthermia and also abnormally high body temperature, which later lead to congenital abnormalities. Forget the hot tub and try a warm bath instead. Some other similar things to avoid:
- hot yoga or Pilates
- sunbathing for too long
- exposure to extreme heat
- strenuous exercise
Activities with Risks
After the first trimester, there are certain things not to do while pregnant. These certain activities have the risk of falling or bumping, such as skiing, ice-skating and rock climbing. Remember that during the pregnancy, as the belly expands the center of gravity shifts, any kind of fall may result in serious injuries.
This includes amusement park rides. Many amusement park rides do not allow pregnant women on certain rides, such as roller coasters or any rides that are violent with starting and stopping suddenly.
Inhaling Secondhand Smoke
You know not to smoke while being pregnant, but what about other people who smoke around you? Inhaling secondhand smoke is certainly on the list of things not to do while pregnant. Secondhand smoke can be as bad as smoking cigarettes yourself or even worst. There are around 4000 harmful chemicals in secondhand smoke, and some of them are linked with cancer. Too much exposure of secondhand smoke during the pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, premature birth, low birth weight, learning issues for the baby, and sudden infant death syndrome.
Don’t Sit or Stand for Too Long
During your pregnancy, it’s recommended to stay active and keep moving around. Staying in the same position for too long, whether seated or standing can cause problems for you. From swollen ankles and vein problems. After being seated for a while try moving around, or put your legs up if you’ve been standing for quite some time.
Don’t Eat Certain Foods
There are some kinds of foods that you should avoid, such as:
- Raw meat and shellfish – raw meat should be obvious, but looking at fresh sushi might lure you to eat it. Raw meats are including oysters, mussels, and clams. Also stay away from rare or undercooked beef and poultry, as these can be contaminated with toxoplasmosis or salmonella.
- Deli meat – it can be contaminated with listeria, a type of bacteria that can cross the placenta and infect the baby inside. The infection could lead to blood poisoning and potentially life-threatening for the baby.
- Some types of fish – because they could potentially have high levels of mercury. Some types of fish such as shark, king mackerel, swordfish and tilefish. As for tuna, if it is canned or chunk light tuna, it usually has lower levels of mercury but you shouldn’t eat it too much.
- Smoked seafood – you should avoid lox, kippered fish, jerky, or nova style salmon. There is always a risk of contamination from listeria. Smoked seafood that is shelf-safe or canned is probably fine.
- Raw eggs – raw eggs are present in some food, so be wary. Some types of foods such as homemade Caesar dressing, Hollandaise sauces, mayonnaise, and certain custard, should be avoided. Raw eggs have a risk of being contaminated with salmonella.
- Unpasteurized dairy – these products may contain listeria and shouldn’t be consumed by pregnant women.
So, what you should eat then? While there are many kinds of food being part of things not to do while pregnant, there are still plenty of great nutrition choices during the pregnancy. It’s important to maintain a balanced diet, you can try to incorporate lean proteins, healthy fats, fresh vegetables and fruits and water to your daily diet.
Don’t Consume Too Much Caffeine
Caffeine is a stimulant and a diuretic, which means if you drink a few cups of coffee every day, it will increase your blood pressure, heart rate, and the number of trips to the toilet and caffeine crosses the placenta.
You may not feel the side effect, but your baby will certainly feel it because their metabolism is still developing. You don’t have to completely give up on coffee, you can consume it moderately. From 150 to 300 mg a day should be fine for the baby. Also remember that it’s not just coffee, you can find caffeine in chocolate, sodas, and certain over-the-counter medicine.
Contact Sports or Heavy Lifting
Contact sports such as football or boxing should be avoided at all cost. It increases the risk of placental abruption, which is the premature separation of the placenta from the uterine wall. Placental abruption may result in premature birth, miscarriage or stillbirth.
Also, according to American Pregnancy Association, heavy lifting increases the risk of pulled muscles, hernias, low birth weight, and preterm labor. Heavy lifting is definitely one of many things not to do while pregnant.