Old Wives Tale

Myth: You Shouldn't Have Sex During Pregnancy

Fact : Sex does not induce labour. It is completely safe to engage in intercourse with your partner during pregnancy provided it is done in a position that does not put a lot of pressure on your tummy. Your baby is within an amniotic sac that keeps it well- protected. In addition to this, your cervix also has a mucous plug to help guard your baby against infections.

However, doctors may advise you against it if you have complications like placenta praevia, a dilated cervix, cervical insufficiency, ruptured membranes, abnormal discharge, and if you are at the risk of premature labour.

Myth: Pregnant Women Shouldn't Exercise

Fact : Regular, moderate exercise if perfectly safe during pregnancy. It may also help you prepare for the delivery. Doctors often advise women to engage in moderate exercises for the same reason. However, it is important not to overwork yourself and seek permission from your doctor before engaging in any exercise.

Exercises During Pregnancy

Myth : If You Have Heartburn Your Baby Will Have More Hair on the Scalp

Fact : This myth has no scientific backing at all. The genetic makeup of the baby is what determines how much hair he will have. Heartburn is caused in most pregnant women as the growing foetus pushes against the stomach forcing acid into the oesophagus. It can also be due to an increase in progesterone hormone which relaxes the valve between the oesophagus and the stomach, making it difficult to prevent the stomach acid from getting back into the oesophagus.

Myth: You should not travel

Fact : You should not travel in even months of pregnancy i.e. 6th and 8th month. Actually it does not matter which month you travel in. If you are going elsewhere for your delivery, then make sure you travel before 34 weeks of pregnancy. Medically, we know that some complications of pregnancy are more common after 34 weeks. So it is better to be under the supervision of the obstetrician who is going to deliver you.

Myth: Avoid sleeping on back

Fact : For normal, healthy woman in an uncomplicated pregnancy , the best position for sleeping is the one that’s most comfortable.

Myth: The shape of your belly can predict the gender of your baby.

Fact : Carrying low? Legend says you’re having a boy. If your belly is higher up, it’s a girl. Actually, stomach muscles

Myth : Exercising will harm my baby.

Fact : Any exercise regimen should be started after consulting your doctor under trained professionals. Being fit increases your stamina and prepares you for the strenuous process of childbirth. In fact, women who were not used to doing any exercise are often advised to start doing some during their pregnancy. Brisk walk is the safest, swimming, breathing exercises and yoga and meditation are again recommended as they are great relaxants but should only be practiced after consulting with doctor.

Myth: Cell phones, microwaves and even computers are harmful.

Fact : Computers have been scientifically proven to be totally safe. As for microwaves, you are at risk of getting radiated only if there is a leakage. To be on the safer side maintain a safe distance while they are on. Similarly cell phones do not harm your baby in any way either.

Myth: Should not get my hair dyed when I am pregnant

Fact : True. It is best to avoid chemicals like hair color during the first three months as these get absorbed from the scalp and reach the blood stream. During the latter half of pregnancy, however, it may not be that risky. Still, natural and herbal preparations should be preferred.

Myth: Pregnant mothers must eat for two.

Fact : Since the requirements of the pregnant mothers increase, she is supposed to eat a little extra, about 350 kcals more. What the pregnant mother actually needs is a well-balanced nutritious diet that consists of all the food groups, so that it fulfils the needs of all the nutrients adequately . Pregnancy is not about eating for two but eating a balanced diet.

pragnency food

Myth: Carrying heavy things will induce labour.

Fact : This is partly true. Picking up heavy load can aggravate backache and can cause spinal injury. However, if it doesn’t strain you and if you do it in the right way, it is fine to lift some amount of weight. For instance, carrying grocery bags and young kids is perfectly fine if you do it in the right way. You should bend your knees to lift anything and carry it close to your body. Do not bend on your back as this will prevent weight from affecting the back. Also, instead of straining just one side of your body always divide the weight equally between two arms.

Flying is not really safe for pregnant women.

Fact : This is part true. It is perfectly safe to fly once in a while if your delivery date is more than six weeks away. Passing through airport security will also not affect your baby. If your flight is a long one, just move around a bit and stretch your legs. However, frequent fliers need to be a bit more cautious.

Myth: Pregnant mothers shouldn't consume fish and fish oil.

Fact : False.Fish and shellfish are an important part of a healthy diet. Fish and shellfish contain high-quality protein and other essential nutrients, are low in saturated fat, and contain omega-3 fatty acids. However, some fish and shellfish contain higher levels of mercury that may harm an unborn baby or young child’s developing nervous system. It is recommended to get the positive health benefits from eating fish and shellfish lower in mercury (for example, shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish), while minimizing mercury exposure by avoiding types of fish that are higher in mercury (for example, shark, swordfish, tilefish and king mackerel).

Myth: Pregnant woman shouldn't wear high heels

Fact : Women can wear heels without hurting their developing baby, unless they make mommy trip and fall. The fact is that as you get more and more pregnant, your centre of gravity changes and you become less steady on your heels.