The Abc's of Pregnancy Don'ts

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When you follow these easy don’ts, and without any unforeseen complications, you are on the path of having a safe and healthy pregnancy with the reward of having a safe and healthy baby that is going to enjoy all the free baby stuff  you got to make the baby’s early life easier.  What you should do or not do is largely common sense good health practices and advice from your doctor.

THE DON’TS:  

(1) No alcohol, no matter how small the amount it is, it can harm the baby’s development.

(2) No use of illegal drugs as these substances will harm the unborn baby who may be born with brain or growth defects.

(3) No tobacco smoking as this habit provides nicotine and cancer causing drugs to your unborn baby that raises the risk of miscarriage and premature birth.

(4)  Avoid contact with or exposure to toxic chemicals and fumes such as cleaning fluids, wet paint, lead and mercury, insecticides and cat litter.  Any or all of these elements can raise your risk of getting sick or an infection that can be harmful to your unborn child.

(5) No eating of seafood that has been packed with mercury or fresh fish that is naturally high in mercury such as mackerel, tuna, shark or swordfish.  Mercury is very harmful to your unborn baby.

(6) No use of scented feminine products such as sprays, sanitary napkins or bubble bath and no douching.  All of these can irritate your vagina and increase your risk of a urinary tract infection or yeast infection.

(7) Avoid food borne illnesses that can cause serious health problems.  Maintain good food preparation habits such as cleaning, cooking, and storing food properly.

(8) Before having any medical or dental x-rays inform the dentist or doctor  that you are pregnant so that extra precautions can be taken to protect you and the baby if the procedure cannot be delayed until after the birth. 

THE DO’S:

(1) Keep your OB-GYN appointments at the scheduled times during your pregnancy.  Your doctor  will be able to detect if any unusual situation develops.

(2) Take your daily prenatal vitamins and an added folic acid tablet (US Department of Health and Human Services recommends 400 to 800 mg a day of folic acid).  This ensures both you and your baby are getting good iron and nutritional supplements.  Your doctor  can prescribe the right prenatal vitamins suited for you.  Folic acid helps to prevent anemia and a low birth weight baby.

(3) Drink extra water and fruit juices.  These liquids work to keep you and your skin healthy and hydrated.

(4) Gain a reasonable amount of pregnancy weight as recommended by your doctor .  Gaining too much weight during pregnancy may result in the development of pregnancy related illnesses and makes it harder to regain your pre-pregnancy weight level.

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