Bed rest is not too uncommon during pregnancy. A doctor may order an expecting mom to stay in bed for the remainder of her pregnancy for a variety of reasons. What many pregnant moms are not aware of, is that bed rest could potentially be dangerous for her and her unborn baby.
There are real medical reasons that bed rest is actually extraordinarily dangerous. Many of these reasons, despite being medical, are apparently overlooked by the doctors who prescribe bed rest for their pregnant patients. Pregnant women are told to go on bed rest for a few reasons, often because of certain complications or risk of baby being born early.
It is vital for pregnant women to know of the risks associated with being placed on bed rest. While bed rest may seem necessary, nothing is fool proof. With bed rest can come some serious issues, for both the mom to be and the unborn baby. Many expecting moms are not aware that bed rest can cause these serious issues and potential complications. Read on to educate yourself on the medical reasons bed rest during pregnancy is actually dangerous AF.
12 Lower Birth Weight For Baby
No parent to be wants their baby to be born too small. We all want our newborn babies to be of average weight, which is approximately eight pounds. When babies are born not weighing enough, they are subject to a host of problems. Low birth weight babies weigh in at less than five pounds. That is a tiny baby.
Bed rest is supposed to help your baby, but studies have shown that pregnant women who are on bed rest often give birth to a baby who weighs in at below average. Sometimes a baby with a lower birth weight strives and has no issues, but other times, their lower birth weight can lead to some medical problems. Oftentimes, a baby who is born prematurely has a lower birth weight, but other times, a mother on bed rest could go to full term and still give birth to a baby who has a low birth weight.
11 Bed Sores
When you think about bed sores, you probably envision an elderly patient in the hospital who can barely even move. Well, while that may be true, bed sores to not discriminate. One side effect of being on bed rest is for the mom to be to develop painful bed sores.
Bed sores are when the skin and tissue is receiving too much pressure from a person who is lying down in the same position for too long. The skin and tissue become inflamed. Bed sores are considered an injury, and can effect many body parts, including the stomach, head, back, shoulders, arms, back of legs and feet. Bed sores, especially if left untreated, can be very dangerous, even deadly. And they are something that pregnant women on bed rest can get.
10 Muscle And Bone Loss
When a pregnant woman is on bed rest, her movement is severely limited. When a person does not move for an extended period of time, the body begins to change. Muscle and bone can be lost due to the failure to move as a result of bed rest.
Studies have shown that those on bed rest, including expecting mothers, can suffer muscle atrophy, which is when the muscles waste away. Pregnant women on bed rest can also have issues with their bones. Those on extended bed rest often are shown to have their bones stop building new bone and matter. This is all a very scary, but very real, issue with bed rest. It is one that pregnant women must be aware of if they are told to stay on bed rest, especially for a long period of time.
9 Prenatal Depression
Depression during bed rest is almost a given. It is quite common to see a pregnant woman develop mild to moderate depression during her time on bed rest. When one is one bed rest, there is not much to do. You are basically told to stay in bed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You cannot go to the store, go to work, meet up with friends, etc.
Depression is dangerous, because anything an expecting mother experiences, so does her developing baby. While the baby will not be born depressed, the chemical changes that occur in a mother with depression can somehow effect the baby. Possibly even causing premature birth, or in the worst case scenarios, cause the mom to be to do something horribly drastic to combat her depression.
8 Premature Birth
One of the main reasons a pregnant woman may be told to stay on bed rest is to prevent her baby from being born too early. A baby who is born too early is at risk for many health problems, including the ability to survive. No mother to be wants to see her baby born too early. It can be a very frightening experience, and one that may not end happily.
Recent studies have indicated that not only is bed rest not a good remedy to keep the baby cooking longer, but it can actually cause premature births, the one thing it is really meant to help to prevent. In this study, more than half of the women who were on bed rest had a premature delivery. Those pregnant women who ignored the call for bed rest stayed pregnant for longer. Indicating that bed rest can actually cause premature birth.
7 Stiffness In Joints
You know that feeling when you are sitting too long and you stand up and your knees click and your joints are all stiff? Well, on bed rest, those feelings can occur far too often and even be dangerous. Bed rest is designed for the mom to be to, well, rest. Her movement is severely limited, so her joints are subject to some serious issues.
Stiffness in joints can hurt. We can often shake it off and then feel fine, but for those moms to be on bed rest, they may experience stiff joints for the duration of their bed rest. Stiff joints are one thing, but they can lead to joint inflammation, bone spurs, loss of flexibility, and more issues. And these issues with their joints can stay with them for not just the remainder of their pregnancy, but for the rest of their lives.
6 Risk Of Developing GD
Gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes. It is when a pregnant women develops a condition with high blood sugar. The hormones from pregnancy and in the placenta can cause this condition, but other factors can play a role, including bed rest. Studies have shown that pregnant women on bed rest are at a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes can be very dangerous for your unborn baby. It can lead to premature labor and delivery, your baby being born with respiratory distress, baby being born at a dangerously high birth weight, the possibly of developing diabetes later in life, and more. Bed rest seems to put an expecting mom at a higher risk of developing this condition, which can be dangerous for her and her unborn baby.
5 High Blood Pressure
When a pregnant woman has high blood pressure, it can lead to a host of serious pregnancy complications. This is why the doctor always checks your blood pressure at every single visit! For those expecting mamas who are on bed rest, the danger of developing high blood pressure is scary, and not uncommon. It is something that a pregnant woman on bed rest may not be aware of developing.
High blood pressure is associated with the pregnancy complication preeclampsia. Preeclampsia can cause water retention which can cause the extremities to swell. However, preeclampsia is extraordinarily dangerous, for both the mom to be and her unborn baby, it can even be fatal. High blood pressure can be easily developed by pregnant women on bed rest. It can also lead to problems with the cervix, as well.
4 Lack Of Balance
When one is on bed rest, you spend the majority of your time, well, in bed, resting! Your movement is quite limited, so your body is going to have some issues no matter what. But when you are pregnant on bed rest, some of the side effects can be dangerous, for both the mom to be and her unborn baby.
Bed rest can mess with one's equilibrium. Lying or sitting down for an extended period of time can cause you to lose your sense of balance. If a pregnant woman on bed rest stands up after being in a lying down position, or even a seated position for too long, her sense of balance will be off. She may easily fall or even faint. This can cause her to injure herself and even her unborn baby.
3 Feeling Sick And Nauseous
Bed rest is meant to help you baby stay in the womb longer. It is supposed to make it all easier, but it can take a serious toll on the mom to be. One side effect of being on a prolonged bed rest is feeling sick and nauseous. Some expecting mamas even get so sick to their stomach they will vomit.
There is something about having limit movement that can essentially tear apart your insides. Your body does not get proper circulation. And when you eat and drink and fail to move about, well, all of that is just sitting in you, slowly digesting. It is not very healthy. When a pregnant woman has these feelings, they may in turn cause her to not eat much or not eat well, and vomit too. None of that is good or safe for her baby to be.
2 Travelling Blood Clots
Blood clots can be extremely dangerous, particularly if they occur in a deep vein (known as deep vein thrombosis). Deep vein thrombosis blood clots can become loose and travel throughout the body, possibly damaging an organ. They could even be fatal, especially if they travel to the lungs.
Being on bed rest puts any person at a serious risk of developing blood clots, and pregnant woman are at an all time high risk. Pregnant woman already may have issues with blood circulation. Pair that with limited movement while being on bed rest, and her chances of having a blood clot are sharply increased. Blood clots are so dangerous AF, that it makes many wonder whether bed rest for an expecting mother is even worth it in the first place.
1 Severe Anxiety
Those expecting mamas who are placed on bed rest for health concerns, have a greater likelihood of developing anxiety. This anxiety can even linger into the postpartum period, putting mom to be at greater chance of anxiety issues once her baby is born. Anxiety and depression can go hand in hand as well, putting many moms to be at risk of having both while on bed rest.
Being on bed rest is, well, boring. It can cause one to overthink everything to death, and that includes stuff that we should not really focus on. Pregnant women on bed rest even sometimes have panic attacks. They are worried and anxious about perhaps the upcoming delivery, becoming a mother, or who knows what else. If they are already anxious, it is only heightened if they have to be on bed rest.
Sources: Mayo Clinic, Baby Center, Fox Health News