|Pregnancy risks - Hazards
surprising how the most non maternal of us becomes so protective
of our babies, particularly when they are in the womb! During
pregnancy one of the most frequent questions we ask ourselves
is 'Will this hurt the baby?' Unfortunately, we are often ignorant
about the answer. So we have compiled this list of things that
you should definitely avoid when pregnant.
the house :
Be extra careful with meat, poultry, fish, shell fish, eggs,
and milk as bacteria grow best in foods that are moist,
high in protein, and non-acidic
major cause of food poisoning is improper food handling.
wash your hands with soap and hot water before and after
you touch non-veg food.
Don't thaw frozen food on the kitchen counter - do it
in the microwave or in the refrigerator.
If you cut raw meat on your cutting board, wash it thoroughly
before cutting anything else.
use a wooden chopping board - bacteria can be trapped
in the cracks.
fruits and vegetables properly to remove pesticides
is sensible not to use saccharin while preparing for pregnancy,
around the time of conception, or during pregnancy itself.
food with monosodium glutamate. Most ready to cook food
items have this ingredient. Also if eating Chinese avoid
Always check the container packets to see if it is listed
as 'to be avoided during pregnancy'. You may be surprised
to find even very common foods in this category.
ever self medicate without first checking with your doctor.
If possible avoid even the most harmless of drugs.
Drink filtered or boiled water.
Indigestion in pregnancy often sets a woman back in her
required weight gain.
precaution would also guard against Jaundice, which is almost
always fatal to a pregnant woman.
your drinking water also protects you from consuming lead
There is still a lot of controversy regarding the effects
of exposure to microwaves. The developing foetus and the eye
are considered to be particularly vulnerable. However, much
more research is needed before the answers are known. Till
then it is advisable to take certain precautions when pregnant.
stand in front of the oven when it is in operation.
sure your oven door doesn't leak. Make sure that the door
is not damaged and it closes properly. If you have any doubts
call the service people to check for possible leaks.
A common source of lead in food or drink is contamination
from earthenware pottery or china. Avoid using crockery that
is not of a reputable brand. Don't use Khurja pottery or any
crockery or earthenware you are not sure of.
Many chemicals commonly found in household products can cross
over the placenta and affect the feotus. For example nail
polish is supposed to contain toluene, which can have a harmful
Avoid products with strong odours or fumes.
breathe it in directly.
Use in area where there is plenty of ventilation.
gloves to avoid getting the cleaning products on your
pump sprays instead of aerosols.
mix different chemicals, such as ammonia and bleach,
as the fumes that result can be very dangerous to anyone
cleaning the oven, though, since it's hard to get good
ventilation in such a tight space.
Insects such as cockroaches and ants, may affect your aesthetic
sensibilities, but they rarely pose a health risk to human
beings, even pregnant ones. It is generally safer to live
with them than to eliminate them through the use of pesticide,
some of which have been linked to birth defects.
Whenever possible, try to take natural approach to pest
you have to use pesticide make sure you are not around
during the process and you get someone else to do the
Many art and craft supplies are toxic. Read the label carefully
before you use these and be sure to follow all directions.
Be extra cautious when you use materials not marketed as
art materials such as household paints (for example enamel
paints which are also used in things like screen printing,
marble texture, etc), for they may not be safe.
Paints have high levels of mercury or lead, both harmful
to the unborn child. While whitewashing or painting is being
done, try to remain away from home. Keep windows open for
ventilation. Remember to steer clear of the paint removing
Use insect repellent with caution, as certain amount of
the chemical is absorbed through the skin into your bloodstream,
especially those that contain the chemical Diethyltoluamide,
more commonly known as DEET.
Furniture, paints, carpets all give off invisible fumes and
pollute the air you breathe at home. Have a lot of plants
inside the house to let the house breathe.
gloves when gardening and wash your hands afterwards as
soil can be infected with the toxoplasma parasite.
contact with potentially toxic fertilizers or pesticides
Cats are potent sources of toxoplasma which can be fatal to
the foetus. If you have a cat at home, have her tested to
see if she has an active infection. If she does, ask some
one to look after her for at least 6 weeks, the period during
which the infection is transmissible. After that keep her
free of infection by not allowing her to eat raw meat, roam
outdoors, hunt mice or birds or fraternize with other cats.
Ask someone else to clean the cat litter.
Your body works overtime to increase the blood supply in your
body, so you're likely to tire more easily, and you'll also
notice that muscles and joints become looser, which can make
you more prone to injury. A bulbous belly can also affect
your sense of balance. It's very important to heed your body's
warnings and steer clear of potential danger areas:
Be careful on the steps
have loose wires lying around the house
around slowly and carefully
up liquid spills immediately
extra careful in the bathroom
Any thing raising the body temperature over 102%F and keeps
it there for a while- whether its workout or a virus, is potentially
hazardous to the developing embryo or foetus, particularly
in the early months
Outside the House :
At the Beauty Parlour
Avoid using a vibrator for a head massage or pedicure especially
in the later months, as it can trigger off labour.
Dyes & Perms
Though nothing has been conclusively proved about the effects
of the chemical compounds in hair dyes and perms, it is
best to take the following precautions
in a well-ventilated room
don't leave the solutions on for excessive periods of
alternative could be highlighting, painting, or frosting
your hair. You absorb hair coloring agents into your
system through your skin (scalp), not through your hair
shaft. So, any process, such as streaking, that puts
less of the chemical in contact with your scalp reduces
your exposure to the compounds in dyes.
could use vegetable dyes like Henna
the Doctor's clinic
X-rays - These need to be avoided. Always tell the doctor
about your condition.
Ask family, guests, friends not to smoke in your presence.
Passive smoking during the prenatal period is said to be
harmful to the baby.
go for a walk or jog along congested roads, since you breathe
in more air and so more pollution when you are active.
the air around you cleaner with greenery.
Several studies have been done on the effect of radiation
from Video Display Units (Monitors) on pregnant women. Though
nothing conclusive has been established, take the following
not to sit behind some one else's terminal (more radiation
is emitted from the back of a unit).
your desk is in a less than ideal position relative
to other VDUs, try for a change in position.
away from hazardous chemicals if they are a part of your
standing for long periods of time.
Travel by any mode that results in a bumpy journey should
be avoided. Autorickshaws and Two-wheelers should be most
distance travel should be done only after you take the permission
of your doctor.