Unborn babies require so much care. This is an uphill task for most pregnant moms, especially first timers. The moment that stick turns pink, there are things that mothers have to stop doing, and pick up maybe some new habits as well to ensure the safety of the baby. There can be serious consequences in every choice that a mother makes. Some of the items that should not be done may not seem so harmful at a glance because they are habitual in the normal day to day life. It is important to note that something that may look really harmless to a nom-pregnant woman, could be a big deal to a pregnant woman and her baby.
The modern mom has very many factors to consider putting aside all in the aim of keeping the baby safe. There are new forms of technology arising every day, which produce lots of radiation that are not good for a growing baby. Some daily choices like taking vitamins and herbal treatments may look so harmless but have significant effects to the unborn baby. Pregnant moms should know that whatever they do, however harmless it may seem, always have an impact on the unborn child, whether positive or negative. Here are just 20 of the things women need to stay away from (or eat in moderation) as soon as they discover the stick is pink!
20 Cold cuts and deli meats
Meats most often are considered very harmless to the not pregnant moms. However, expectant moms should know that they could contain bacteria ,commonly known as listeria. This bacteria is commonly known to be responsible for flu-like symptoms in pregnant moms such as nausea, fever, muscle aches and even headaches. However, the bacteria has severe effects to the unborn baby which can result into premature births, still born and even death of the baby. Newborns can also end up having meningitis after birth. Listeria is however treatable when diagnosed in pregnant women. The most common remedy for it is antibiotics. But if the craving is too high for cold cuts, it is advised to have them preheated before consumption, otherwise other healthier alternatives are advised.
19 Essential oils with Cinnamon, Clove and Rosemary content
Essential oils have very strong natural origin. Essential oils can be very strong natural products. So many questions have been raised on their possible side effects to unborn babies. The safest way to go is to avoid them during pregnancy. This is because, some of these oils can cause uterine contractions which hinder the unborn baby's development. Besides that, most of the retailers of these oils sell them with varying levels of research and very little education on the effects of these oils. Oils with cinnamon, clove and rosemary content should be kept at bay due to the assumption that they can cause contractions. Any other that is particularly recommended by the doctor should also be considered. It is also advisable to check the contents of any oils that you purchase to know its contents.
18 Mobile phones close to your belly
It is very tempting to want your unborn baby to listen to the music with you. It is believed to be soothing to the baby and helps them connect with the outside world while still in the womb. Cell phones have harmful radiations that are harmful to your unborn child. Cell phones should be kept away from the belly as soon as the pregnancy checks in. Studies have shown that mice that were exposed to radiation during pregnancy resulted in memory problems and hyperactivity, which is also supported by a similar study on humans that was done in 2010. This is also extended to appliances such as microwaves. Mothers are warned not to stand in front of the microwaves directly. It is also not advisable to carry phones on the waist.
Sprouts have high possibility for bacterial growth therefore their consumption must be discontinued immediately pregnancy is confirmed. Bacteria such as listeria, E.coli and salmonella can grow in the sprouts. Some types of sprouts susceptible to these bacteria are the mung bean,clover and radish. This arises from the fact that seeds generally require warm and moist conditions, which are perfect for bacterial growth. This is the same for sprouts as well which is why they are considered dangerous to expectant moms. These bacteria; listeria, salmonella and E.coli can lead to miscarriage, premature delivery and even death of the newborn. Salmonella also poses potential danger to the mother. Therefore sprouts should be highly avoided during pregnancy for the safety of the unborn baby.
16 Cat litter
Cats and kittens especially the stray ones should be avoided. Pregnant women are advised to stop changing the cat litter. Cats carry with them a parasite called toxoplasma. Cats are exposed to this parasite from their feeding habits. Cats majorly feed on rodents, birds and other small animals. If the rodents are infected the cats end up carrying the parasite which they shed in their feces. Though it is not a very common parasite. This parasite can have serious consequences to the baby such as blindness and mental disability. Even if the baby is not born with these serious conditions, there are possibilities of them developing later in life. Besides that, women who have contracted toxoplasma before conception have higher chances of spreading it to their unborn child.
15 Sushi (Sorry)
Sushi poses a danger because of its potentially dangerous because it contains - mercury, bacteria and parasites. Some types of fish may contain high levels of mercury which may have negative effects on the unborn. When these fish are used and are consumed in high levels, it poses potential danger. When consumed once in a while, it is however safe. The main issue of content here is having sushi that has raw or undercooked meat. This could result into parasitic and bacterial infections which are harmful during pregnancy. Pregnant women are also very susceptible to infections because they have suppressed immune systems because their bodies are trying to accommodate another being. Raw sushi can be very dangerous and life-threatening to the new born. .
14 Using Vitamin A
Some women use vitamin A for treatment of ailments such as acne. It is advised to stop the consumption of high doses of this vitamin when one id trying to conceive. Additionally, pregnant women are warned on taking high amounts of this vitamin as it may have very serious consequences to the unborn. Some studies have shown that women who have consumed high amounts of this vitamin during the first 6-7 weeks of pregnancy have higher chances of having birth defects. Some levels of vitamin A is very essential during pregnancy, very low levels could also be detrimental as it can cause complications in the eyesight of the unborn and even blindness. So it is very important to have the proper dietary combinations that give just the right balance of vitamin A.
13 Consuming herbal tea
Some ingredients in tea may be seen to be very safe even during pregnancy. However, the same ingredient may be too concentrated in the same tea, which could pose some harm to the unborn baby. There haven't been s lot of research on this subject though. There haven't been any regulations put in place for herbal teas. Though, some ingredients in the tea can be the spice up factors for miscarriages, pre mature labor and even low birth weights. If the craving for herbal tea is however too much, it is advisable to check with your doctor on the appropriate type for you. Some examples like the black and green tea are considered safe, but only when taken in small amounts.
12 Taking aspirin
There are just those days that you will get so fatigued and have that headache that just that does not go away. In most cases you would not think twice about taking the aspirin. But when there is another human life that is depending on you inside you, this may not be the easiest remedy. It is always advised to consult your doctor first. There may be cases however when the doctor can prescribe some doses of aspirin, but in very minimal levels such as clotting disorders and treatment of conditions such as preeclmpsia. Aspirin is very dangerous in every stage of pregnancy. High doses can cause miscarriages and congenital issues at the onset of pregnancy. As the pregnancy nears completion, it can cause premature closure of heart vessels and increased risk of bleeding in babies. .
11 Skipping meals every so often
We all get busy at times to an extent we even forget some meals. This is somewhat okay when one is not pregnant. The moment you get another life that is depending on you, particularly depending on the food that you are eating, skipping meals is not an option. Particularly, pregnant women need to ensure they have adequate consumption of calories and a variety of other nutrients as well. This is because the baby will need all these nutrients at different times throughout the pregnancy to facilitate the growth and development. Skipping a meal once in a while may not have negative effect on the baby, but will lead to poor nutrition and being underweight which can affect the baby.
10 Getting stressed out
Generally, a little stress is okay and manageable. This applies even to people who are not expecting. Pregnant women can develop a little stress during pregnancy, due to the many changes that occur in her body during this period. This is very normal. A lot of stress, repeatedly is what is considered very dangerous. Some studies have shown that children whose mothers were under extreme stressful conditions during the pregnancy had problems in focusing and paying attention and also lived in constant fear later in life. Stress to the mother poses danger to the baby's development and immune system. Some research also links stress to premature birth and low birth weight in babies.The mother can also be adversely affected and end up having heart diseases or even high blood pressure.
9 Taking just any medication
Whatever you consume, so does your baby in the womb. Drugs have both immediate and long term effects on a child. They can cause so many problems to your baby's developing body. This applies to both the legal and illegal drugs as well. It is advisable to discuss with your doctor about the medications that are safe before and during your pregnancy. If you are however already pregnant, it is vital to discuss with your doctor about any medications you are currently taking so that the doctor can advise you accordingly. For those who are addicts of illegal drugs, treatment is highly necessary to ensure the survival of the baby and to reduce possible long term effects. Unprescribed drug use during pregnancy can result to miscarriages, birth defects and still births. In extreme cases, the baby can be addicted to drugs or have constant seizures, strokes and heart attacks.
8 Puffing on anything
There was a time when smoking was considered safe during pregnancy. But it is a great thing that we know the dangers of smoking not only to pregnant women but also to the rest of the human population. The CDC reported that most women who were smoking during the early stages of their pregnancies were most likely to have babies with heart defects such as holes in the heart. Very few babies with heart defects survive beyond the first year of life. Placenta problems are also common in such cases. It is important to note that it is the placenta that links the baby to its source of food-the mother. Some other effects include the cleft palate,low birth weight and premature birth.
7 Staying in conflict-prone relationships or situations of emotional instability
Studies have linked maternal instability and/or relationship conflicts to lifelong challenges to the child. Pregnant women are advised to stop enduring such situations , if not for herself then for her baby in the womb. She needs to ensure the safety of her baby at all costs. Children whose mothers were exposed to emotional conflicts or physical ones during the pregnancy ended up having genetic differences. The gene in the brain that is related to handling stress became less active when the children were aged 9-19, which related to reduced ability to handle stress. These children ended up being more easily upset and avoided physical contact with people, and generally had trouble experiencing enjoyment. Mothers are therefore advised to ensure they walk away from any form of abuse for the safety of their babies.
6 Having a fun drink
There is no level of alcohol that has been proven to be potentially safe during pregnancy. Alcohol should be avoided completely during pregnancy. A baby's development is very vital and critical. So many important changes happen at each stage. Therefore alcohol consumption could have different effects at each of these stages. Researchers have not been able to identify if there is any period during pregnancy that is considered ''safe'' for expectant mothers to take any alcohol. Babies exposed to alcohol consumption in the womb may develop fetal alcohol spectrum disorder which could potentially result into speech disabilities and learning disabilities and even abnormal features like small head. So for that next girls out that you had planned, try out some alcohol free wine or treat yourself to some smoothie or milkshake.
5 Believing everything you read on pregnancy
Pregnancy comes with a lot of curiosity especially for first time moms. There is always the need to know why the body is reacting the way it is, why you feel the way you are feeling and even more what to expect during certain times. Various forms of information will present themselves to you. Magazines, online information and even books are readily available to provide any information you may seek. Some women even share their pregnancy experiences in such platforms. If your experience so far differs from theirs you may be tempted to think there may be a problem with your pregnancy. These platforms present pregnancy to be the same while in reality, no pregnancy is the same as the other. If in doubt it is always safer to consult your doctor.
4 Regular doses of caffeine
Caffeine is a stimulant and a diuretic. The usual few cups of coffee you take daily elate your blood pressure, your heart rate and of course the number of trips you will take to the restroom. Caffeine also ends up crossing the placenta. Remember your baby eats whatever you eat, and uses this for his growth and development. To a pregnant mother, coffee may pose no harm but to the growing baby, it is very harmful. The baby's metabolism is still developing and and it is therefore very vital to watch what you consume. If the craving is to high, moderate levels of caffeine are advised. It is also important to note that caffeine is not just in tea and coffee but in chocolates, sodas and certain over the counter medicines.
3 Lifting heavy objects
Pregnancy brings about very many changes in the body. With the expansion of the uterus, loosening of the hip joints, your center of gravity will most definitely shift and you will have issues with your balance. You may not be as energetic as before too. It is important to realise that for safety you may not be able to lift heavy objects. Heavy lifting will put strain on the pelvic floor and cause damage to it, leading to increased risk of pelvic organ prolapse. For those instances where you just cannot avoid lifting heavy objects you need to exercise caution and do it the right way. Ask for help if there is any available to minimize any injuries. Always take small calculated steps.
2 Unnecessary travel
If you can avoid this then it is highly advisable for your comfort. Travelling can be very cumbersome because you have to start all the way from packing, which in most cases will be very bulky as you need to ensure your comfort during the trip. After that you will be stuck in a plane or a car as you go to your destination, you will be constantly required to take breaks or stops to go to the restroom after every few minutes, which may be annoying to everyone else who is not pregnant. Your destination may not provide as much comfort as you would expect. So why not just stay home in your comfortable nest as much as you can and save yourself all the unnecessary discomfort.
1 Wearing sky high heels
Pregnancy brings about very many changes in the body. With the expansion of the uterus, loosening of the hip joints, your center of gravity will most definitely shift and you will have issues with your balance. Having to add high heeled shoes on to this is almost like a time bomb waiting to explode. You will be very unsteady and can easily topple over. In addition,you may have swollen ankles which will provide a difficult time in heels as well. Why not take this as an advantage to go shopping for some nice pair of sandals and flat shoes. You can wear these when you go for those morning or evening walks with your unborn baby. Ensuring your comfort is very vital during pregnancy.
Sources: healthline.com, scarymommy.com, smartparents.sg