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20 Things People Think Pregnant Women Must Avoid (But They're Fine)

Generations of women have been having babies without much fuss long before there was the Internet and even before there was a doctor on every corner. Over the years though, pregnancy has moved from being a normal thing that is expected of every woman who gets married to something that is considered to be so delicate that the rulebook gets bigger and bigger as the years go by. Years ago, all a woman had to do was get pregnant and wait nine months for the baby to come. No supplements and no prenatal scans or vaccines.

These days, pregnancy is a delicate time and how one handles it will be the difference between a smooth ride and a rough one. Missing that tetanus vaccine could prove to be the wrong choice and n ot taking those folic supplements could mean complications for the baby. The chemicals in the air and in a house and what mom ingests could be the reason the baby does not achieve milestones as is expected or what impedes brain development. With all these precautions that moms-to-be are warned about, it is no wonder that women have become overly cautious and the don’ts for pregnant women have long outnumbered the dos.

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20 Skin Care Products

Skin care products come with chemicals and most often, these chemicals are considered harmful to the mother as well as the baby.

There is a long list of the skin care products that are considered bad for the mother and the child but this does not mean that the pregnant woman should stop her beauty regimen because of this.

In pregnancy, the skin is prone to a lot of dermatological issues and it can be quite stressful. Pregnant women are advised to be extra cautious when she is pregnant by choosing skin care products that do not have harmful toxins in them.

19 Polished Furniture

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Women have so many hang-ups and are scared of so many things, more so during pregnancy. Because women have gone through child loss or have been waiting for long to conceive, anything that people say can be harmful to their baby is a source of concern for them.

According to Time.com, Dr. Bohn, a Californian OB/GYN recalls an incident where one of her patients had trepidations about sitting on one of her couches due to the furniture fumes.

Convincing such a woman that the seats have no effect on her baby can be rather difficult, but the truth is, the fumes will do nothing to the baby and a pregnant woman can go ahead to enjoy her furniture.

18 Hair Dye

Not many of us are natural blondes and some of us have even grayed early. We are the people who visit the beauty parlor often to have our locks colored. Women are told not to dye their hair during pregnancy for fear it may harm the fetus.

According to the American Pregnancy Association,

“Although fairly limited, most research indicates the chemicals found in both semi-permanent and permanent dyes are not highly [problematic] and are safe to use during pregnancy."

"In addition, only small amounts of hair dye may be absorbed by the skin, leaving little that would be able to reach the fetus.”

17 Sleeping on your back

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A pregnant woman is advised to sleep on their side and the left side to be exact. This has always been a nightmare for the woman who was used to sleeping either on their back or on their stomach. According to the American Pregnancy Association, “The best sleep position during pregnancy is “SOS” (sleep on side). Even better is to sleep on your left side. Sleeping on your left side will increase the amount of blood and nutrients that reach the placenta and your baby."

This does not, however, mean that sleeping on your back or right side will be bad for the baby.

It is just a precaution to prevent light-headedness, which is quite rare.

16 Stress

When a woman gets pregnant, the rhetoric changes to “do not stress her it is not good for the child.” One minute she is a healthy woman without a care in the world dealing with everything that comes her way and the next, everyone is handling her with kid gloves and she is suddenly too delicate to handle difficult issues.

According to Healthline, “New research shows that a moderate level of stress is actually good for the fetus: It tones the fetus's nervous system and accelerates its development. Women who experience moderate stress during pregnancy have two-week-old infants with brains that work at a faster speed than infants of mothers without the same stress, and two-year-old toddlers with a higher motor and mental development scores.”

15 Sweets

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The list of things a pregnant woman can and cannot eat is getting longer each day and pregnancy can sometimes turn from being a wonderful journey to one that is rather boring and tasteless.

Most people believe that it is wrong to eat sweets, but studies now show that a pregnant woman can eat sweets in moderation.

According to Fit Pregnancy, "If you're eating an excessive amount of sweets during pregnancy, you are either replacing nutrient-dense foods or getting too many overall calories." Studies now show that a pregnant woman who eats chocolate each day gives birth to fearless children who laugh and smile at the six-month mark. Chocolate in the third trimester also lowers risks of high blood pressure.

14 Eclipse

The lunar eclipse does not appear that often and when it does, most of us want to see it, after all, we may never get the opportunity to do so in our lifetime. Woe unto you if your aunt is home for a visit and you are expecting a baby.

The number of people who feel that a pregnant woman should not go out during the lunar eclipse is staggering.

The truth is, this is just an old wives tale and nothing will happen to the pregnant woman if she does. By all means, go out and experience the wonders of nature and it will have no effect on the baby.

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13 Coffee

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Like everything else in life, moderation is key and it is the only way we keep lifestyle diseases at bay. Taking caffeine is not recommended in pregnancy and even when breastfeeding. This is because caffeine has been linked to a lot of birth defects. This, however, does not mean that the woman has to go cold turkey now that she is pregnant.

According to March of Dimes,If you’re pregnant, limit caffeine to 200 milligrams each day. This is about the amount in 1½ 8-ounce cups of coffee or one 12-ounce cup of coffee. If you’re breastfeeding, limit caffeine to no more than two cups of coffee a day.”

12 Skipping Breakfast Starves The Baby

Most women are not able to keep anything down in the morning and to prevent the feeling of sickness and nausea, most just decide to skip breakfast as this makes them feel better. This habit though is largely frowned upon with most people insisting that the pregnant mother has to eat three solid meals and numerous snacks in between. Most people believe that if this happens, the baby would get starved.

This is a misconception though and the baby will not get starved just because the mother skipped a meal or two. The extra intake of food the mother requires to sustain the baby is not much and this can be catered to in the course of the day.

11 Rock Concerts

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Most women are worried that loud music will affect their babies eardrums. This is quite an issue for those who love rock concerts and who enjoy loud music in their cars. This fear is unfounded though and a pregnant woman is free to dance her heart out without fear of harming the baby.

According to What to Expect, “The sounds inside your uterus, of course, are muffled — and not just by the physical barrier of amniotic fluid and your own body. In his fluid-filled home, a baby's eardrum and middle ear can't do their normal job of amplifying sounds. So even sounds that are quite loud to you won't be to your baby.”

10 Cheese

Most people have cravings and this can really get out of hand, especially for a pregnant woman. For those who love pizza and anything that is made with cheese, being told that she cannot give in to her cravings in the middle of the night can be quite distressing.

According to Made for Mums, “The good news is that most cheeses are perfectly safe to eat when pregnant, and are a great source of calcium. The NHS recommends that, except for mold-ripened soft cheeses, such as Brie and Camembert, all other soft types of cheese are OK to eat provided they're made from pasteurized milk. They're safe whether cooked or eaten raw.”

9 Exercise

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Any woman who has ever been pregnant will attest to the fact that the most irritating session in a woman’s life is pregnancy. Not because of nausea or the side effects of pregnancy but because the people around us seem to think that being pregnant is akin to sickness and the woman should not lift a finger, let alone think of exercising. God forbid that the woman loses the pregnancy and the know-it-all attribute this loss to the exercises the mother has been doing.

According to Kids Health, exercise prepares the mother’s body for birth. “Strong muscles and a fit heart can greatly ease labor and delivery. Gaining control over your breathing can help you manage pain. And in the event of a lengthy labor, increased endurance can be a real help.”

8 Sushi

Women are advised to stay away from seafood and in most households, the menu changes to other meats the minute the woman finds out she is pregnant. For those who love fish, this can be rather disappointing and more so those who know the benefits of eating fish. The truth of the matter is, eating fish is beneficial to the mother because fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

These fatty acids have been proven to produce kids with higher IQs as long as the fish is low in mercury. Studies now show that for those mothers who partake as little as 12 ounces of fish a week have babies who have a higher verbal IQ, better communication, as well as better social skills.

7 Hamburgers

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On behalf of all the pregnant women with burger cravings, it is the time people stopped giving us the stink eye whenever they see us enjoying a burger because they have the notion that pregnant women should refrain from eating burgers.

According to LIVESTRONG, “Enjoy an occasional hamburger, but make sure it is properly prepared. All ground meats should be cooked to 160 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources. If you are dining out, ask the cook to check the internal temperature of the hamburger patty. Never eat a hamburger that is pink in the middle -- the patty should be brown all the way through.”

6 Pineapples

Women who have gone past their due date have been known to indulge in one too many pineapples in a bid to hasten the elusive labor. This is the reason that most women are warned against eating pineapple with the caution that it may lead to premature labor and even loss of the child.

According to Healthline, “Pineapple is a safe, healthy choice during pregnancy. Someone might have told you to avoid this fruit because it may cause early miscarriage, or bring on labor. But this is an old wives’ tale. There’s no scientific evidence to support that pineapple is dangerous during pregnancy. The rumors about pineapple are purely anecdotal.”

5 Flying During Your First Or Last Trimester

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Most people advocate for the grounding of pregnant women saying that a pregnant woman should not fly during her first and third trimester, months that are considered risky in most pregnancies. This fear rests on the fact that most people think that the woman will go into labor, forcing the plane to abruptly land or mess up the nice upholstery.

According to Baby Center, “If your pregnancy is straightforward and you're healthy, flying will not cause any harm to you or your baby. Most airlines won't allow pregnant women to fly after 37 weeks. Some may require a letter from your doctor after 28 weeks, confirming your due date, that you are healthy and that your pregnancy is straightforward.”

4 Cats

Women love kitties and nothing feels more divine than running your hand through the fur of your beloved kitty. The most disheartening thing that can happen to a woman is being told she has to give up her kitty for the sake of her pregnancy and that one delight cannot be experienced anymore now that she is pregnant.

This is a misconception and petting a cat is not bad. A pregnant woman can keep her cat but she cannot empty the cat's litter box. This is because cat litter comes with the risk of toxoplasmosis. For the women who have a cat, by all means, pet the cat and enjoy your companion.

3 Smoked Salmon

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All our great aunts have this rule against fish and for most of us who enjoy this delicacy, convincing them that indulging in smoked salmon will not harm the baby can be a tall order. Smoked salmon is high in fatty acids that have been proven to be quite beneficial to the unborn child.

Being a freshwater fish, salmon is less likely to cause mercury poisoning. It is now proven that babies whose mothers eat a healthy dose of salmon at least twice a week have a higher IQ, and which mother doesn’t want a shot at having the next Einstein?

2 High Heels

Heels make a woman and a woman in heels feel quite powerful and she can conquer the world. Heels are what makes an outfit and it is what gives any woman attractive or not, the confidence to do miracles. A woman in heels even in a cheap dress looks more refined than the woman in flats.

Unfortunately, most women think that wearing heels is harmful to them and their pregnancy, but this is a misconception and a woman can rock in heels as long as she feels comfortable and watches her balance. When she feels too tired then she can go back to her trusted flats.

1 Bedroom Fun

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The belief that grown-up time is meant for procreation gets more real for the expectant mother at a time when she truly needs the closeness. Most partners have a fear of getting close with a pregnant woman, with most believing that they may poke the baby or that it will lead to a miscarriage. According to Dr. Minkin, it’s safe

"[Getting together], in general, is absolutely fine," Dr. Minkin says. Take it from us — you are not going to poke your fetus, she won’t know mommy and daddy are doing it, and for most women, there’s no reason not to twist the sheets throughout the trimesters. That’s especially true if your due date has come and gone. It results in hormones called prostaglandins, which can actually stimulate the uterus to contract. That’s why, Dr. Minkin says, “We tend to encourage people to be [active] if they’re post-[due] date.”

References: MadeformumsHealthlineKidshealthFitpregnancyTime

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