Just imagine the amount of joy and happiness once a pregnancy test confirms your pregnancy! Once you achieve motherhood your body undergoes a lot of physiological, psychological, and hormonal changes to prepare your body fit for the child’s initial growth. During pregnancy, the mothers-to-be might be concerned about a lot of things in their pregnancy-it might be about their health or maybe about the health of the child. There are some common pregnancy-related myths that one gets to know while she is pregnant. Some myths might be partially true, while others are baseless. It is very important to know what one should do and should not do while pregnant. So, here are the most commonly known myths on pregnancy.
Myth 1: To avoid your flu vaccine
There is a very common myth that if an expecting woman or a woman who is getting pregnant gets a jab of flu vaccine then she might develop a chance of developing flu along with the growing baby or the chemical components of the vaccine might somehow affect the health of the fetus. Do not trust such kind of a myth because a flu vaccination will never cause common cold or influenza to you or your baby. During pregnancy, your body is undergoing rapid changes as your little one is growing inside you. For instance, your major organs like the digestive system, heart, lungs, and brain are going through rapid changes and thus you are having a lower immunity. So, your body is very vulnerable to any kind of infection and highly- contagious diseases that are usually caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, such as influenza, or the common cold. So instead of giving you the common cold virus, the influenza vaccine can save you and your child from the harmful disease. It is very important to get fully vaccinated with doses of various types of viruses and bacteria even before you are planning for pregnancy to protect yourself and your baby from harmful and contagious infections.
Myth 2: Your meal is for ‘Two’
While you are pregnant, it is very obvious that you are eating for two, that is you and your baby, but these two do not mean two fully adult individuals. On average, a pregnant woman with a normal body mass index or BMI requires only about 300 extra calories per day to help the baby grow and develop. Excessive intake of foods during pregnancy might lead to some complications including obesity and can further cause greater risk to the health of the baby.
Myth 3: Belly shape says baby’s gender
The baby’s gender can never be predicted based on the belly’s shape and fullness. It is a general myth to foretell it is a boy if the baby bump is a bit low and a girl if it is a bit high. There must be coincidences, but no valid proof that such a prediction is true. During pregnancy, the stomach muscles stretch with and that forms the shape of the bump but not the gender of the baby.
Myth 4: To quit hair-dying in pregnancy
There is no such scientific proof that using hair dye while you are pregnant can lead to any damage to the baby’s health. The chemicals that are present in products such as hair dye, permanents, and relaxers are not absorbed in huge quantities that might affect the health of your child. But these products might contain a very strong smell that can make pregnant women nauseated and can also make them puke or vomit. It is clinically recommended to continue with hair dying after you complete the first trimester of your pregnancy if you fear the child’s health damage from using hair dyes.
Myth 5: To give up excessive intake of caffeine
This is true. Try to give up an excessive intake of coffee or any caffeinated drink once you are pregnant because such a condition might lead to high chances of miscarriage, premature birth, stillbirth, lack of proper development of the embryo, and some other complications in pregnancy and difficulties during labor and childbirth.
Myth 6: Not to fly while you are pregnant
Another common myth is that avoid flying while you are pregnant. It is often said that the body scanners that are used in the airports or the security X-ray machines give out radiation that might be harmful to the baby’s health and can affect the baby severely. Also, it is said that flying at much higher altitudes can also damage a baby’s health.
But the truth is, there is no boundary for flying as such during pregnancy. Scientifically, we are coming across some radiation, either from our mobile phones or any other electronic gadget. The radiation from the X-ray unit at airport security check or flying at a higher altitude cannot affect the baby’s health as seriously as it is imagined to be. So, there is nothing to worry about it. If an emergency arises, you are all free to travel via plane but just be a little careful about your health while you are traveling while you are pregnant.
But the most important thing is, it is important to check if there is a restriction on behalf of the airport to travel in the air while you are in your last trimester or if you are about to approach the date of your labor or delivery. There might be some troubles if any situation of delivering en route arises. Seek medical help whenever you feel it is necessary and try to care for yourself to ensure the health of your child.
Myth 7: To avoid having fish or seafood
Do not ever entertain such a myth. Fishes and seafood such as salmon, shrimp, and canned light tuna consist of vitamin A that not only improves vision but also helps to keep you healthy and aids in better growth and overall development of your child. Vitamin A is one of the most crucial prenatal vitamins that doctors prescribe for a healthy pregnancy. Try having cold water fishes that are rich in Omega- 3 fatty acids. These are exceptionally essential for the baby’s brain development.
But on the other hand, it is wise to avoid fishes and seafood that are high in the content of mercury such as swordfish, shark, tilefish, and king mackerel. Avoid fish items such as sushi that includes raw and uncooked. This can increase the chances of indigestion or food poisoning and can cause nausea, vomiting, and stomach upset.
Myth 8: Avoid sex while you are pregnant
Scientifically, this is wrong. It is very much safe to have sex even when you are pregnant. While you are pregnant, your baby is covered and perfectly protected by the amniotic sac and strong uterine muscles and so it will never be harmed by the process of intercourse. But your doctor will advise you not to have sex if you have a difficult pregnancy or if there are chances of premature birth or miscarriage, or if you notice bleeding during pregnancy. If you are having sex while you are pregnant, you should be careful that you are not getting infected by any harmful, sexually- transmitted diseases such as genital warts, chlamydia, or HIV, and in that case, the disease could be transmitted to your baby too.
Myth 9: The heart rate of a fetus can predict the baby’s gender
According to science and medical experts, on average a baby’s heart during pregnancy has approximately about 120 to 160 beats per minute. So, it is wrong to say that such a heartbeat can predict the gender of the developing fetus.
Myth 10: The shape of your face during pregnancy can predict the baby’s gender
This is a wrong and old myth about pregnancy, and one must not believe any of such sayings. During pregnancy, some physiological and hormonal changes in your body might cause some skin changes or can have any effect on your face. But this will certainly not predict the gender of your baby.
Myth 11: To avoid spices during pregnancy
There is a pregnancy myth that if you have too much spice during pregnancy, then there might be a chance that your baby might be born blinded. But the truth is eating spicy foods during pregnancy at a moderate level is safe and never harms the health of the child in any way. But avoid having too many spicy foods during pregnancy, because this might cause heartburn and indigestion, and acidity-related issues.
Myth 12: Heartburn during pregnancy ensures baby’s birth with hair
This might just not be a myth; it may have some truth. A recent study is now revealing that women who had experienced symptoms of heartburn during their pregnancies have given birth to babies with hair.
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