While there are many obvious answers to this, some of the things you shouldn’t do while pregnant may not be so self-explanatory. However, they could be seriously dangerous no-no’s. Let’s take a look at those elements that pregnant women shouldn’t do under any circumstances.
Things You Shouldn’t Do While Pregnant
As soon as you announce your pregnancy you’ll have no shortage of fanciful advice given to you about what you should or shouldn’t do while pregnant. Instead of subjecting you to all of the what if’s, we’re just going straight to absolutely never do these things while pregnant. Objective no-no’s!
- Cheeses/Meats – You should avoid all raw and unpasteurized cheeses and meats when possible. Heat your deli meats to at least 145 Fahrenheit before eating.
- Junk/Fast Food – The real problem with eating junkie foods or filling fast foods isn’t just that you’re putting high, fat, greasy foods into your body to share with your developing baby. It’s more a problem of having a significantly smaller stomach during pregnancy. The more junk food you put in the less room you’ll have (the less you’ll want to eat) to put in healthy, nutritious food your baby needs to grow.
- Certain Types of Fish – Fish is definitely brain food and of great nutritional value to your growing baby, however, some types of fish have an elevated mercurial value. So make sure to avoid fish high in mercury — shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish, among others. For more information on which fish to avoid and which are totally safe during pregnancy, read here.
- Extra Vitamin Supplements – Fat soluble vitamins are great in small doses. In larger doses they can be dangerous. Make sure to talk to your physician before adding any more vitamins besides your prenatal.
Alcohol and Drug No-No’s
The placenta can’t filter all drugs. But the drugs you should avoid aren’t just limited to street drugs.
- Illegal Drugs – The use of street drugs during pregnancy is associated with pregnancy complications for mom and developmental impairment for baby.
- Alcohol – Alcohol can have a variety of negative effects on you and your developing baby. The main problem with consuming any amount of alcohol during pregnancy is that researchers have been unable to determine a ‘safe’ amount to consume while pregnant.
- Prescription and OTC Medications – You don’t have to look to street drugs and alcohol for substances likely to cause developmental or birth issues. Some prescription drugs can actually be far more devastating in effect than alcohol or illegal drugs. Make sure to talk with your physician before you take any new prescription or OTC drugs.
There are plenty of toxins you’ll find around the average home that a pregnant woman needs to avoid.
- Smoking and Second-Hand Smoke – This is a given. If you smoke, seek help to stop. Ideally before you get pregnant. Second-hand smoke is equally as dangerous for you and your baby. So prevent others from smoking in closed quarters with you whenever possible, as well.
- Paint Fumes – If you’re worried about which paints are safe for your pregnancy as well as your newborn baby, look for low VOC paints to decorate the nursery with or look for someone who will paint it for you.
- Garden and Lawn Chemicals – Keep an eye on labels on all of these products and do not use if they suggest they are dangerous during pregnancy. In general, avoid contact whenever possible with pesticides, herbicides and fungicides.
- Personal Care Products – Just as with lawn chemicals, keep your eyes on the safety labels on all products. The safest products will have the fewest ingredients or the USDA Certified Organic Seal.
- Basic Household Cleaners – Avoid those with a long list of ingredients a well as any labeled as poisonous or those with warnings and dangers. During your pregnancy, you’ll find that a safe option for cleaning most things around the house is basic ingredients you have around the home already, like baking soda and vinegar.
Everything from Flea collars to cat litter can present problems for a pregnant woman. Make sure your spouse, roommates or kids handle any of the following tasks.
- Cat litter – Let your partner, children or others handle it or wear disposable gloves to lower the risk of toxoplasmosis.
- Ticks – Avoid tick bites that can open you up to the real risk of Lyme disease. Always check for ticks after hiking or yard play.
- Reptiles –Many reptiles can transfer salmonella bacteria through their feces. Make sure your partner or the kids are taking care of any lizard or snake cages during your pregnancy. Always wear rubber gloves and wash yourself well if you have no choice.