As a first-time mother, it is very common to scour the internet for the things you need to know about pregnancies. Often, you might even receive advice and tips from the people around you. However, you could find a lot of conflicting information on the internet. What then?
Four topics are of particular concern to me because I do believe there is a lot of misinformation about them online.
- “You can’t eat seafood during your pregnancy.”
You should eat fish when you are pregnant but be selective in the kind of fish you eat. Avoid large fish because they can carry high levels of mercury from eating lots of small fish. While the small fish may have some mercury in their bodies, the small fish also have omega 3, which is good for your baby’s developing brain.
Perhaps you love sushi but avoid raw fish while you’re pregnant. White canned tuna is reasonable choice. Try eating 4 ounces of white fish three times a week.
- “Exercising is bad for your pregnancy.”
Exercise is certainly not bad for your pregnancy. Just don’t start a new exercise regimen while pregnant. Continue with the exercise you were doing before your pregnancy. If you are looking to add to your exercise, walking a mile or two should be O.K.
Keep an eye on your pulse. You don’t want it to go above 125. If you have a doptone (hand held fetal monitor), you can keep an eye on your baby’s pulse as well. Babies will tolerate 160 fairly well, but not 60.
In the end, exercise at a level comfortable for you. If you find your exercise regimen is getting to0 much for you, don’t hesitate to cut back your routine.
- “Don’t drink coffee because it is bad for you.”
The suggested limit on caffeine is 200 mg per day. But remember many bottled drinks contain caffeine. Decaffeinated coffee still has some caffeine in it. Some teas may contain more caffeine than coffee. Check labels carefully. If you don’t drink coffee, you should still watch the caffeine levels in the other things you drink during the day.
Women often have trouble with constipation in pregnancy. For some people, a cup of coffee really helps. If you are someone coffee helps with regularity, the caffeine in a cup of coffee may be preferable to struggling with constipation.
- “Airplane travel can cause a miscarriage.”
Air travel will not cause a miscarriage, but there are other considerations regarding air travel when you are pregnant. The biggest danger with air travel while pregnant is the risk of having a deep vein thrombosis (DVT), or blood clot in a leg or pelvis.
Sitting in an airplane seat without walking for long periods of time creates a risk for a DVT. There is no absolutely proven “safe” amount of time you can sit, virtually immobile, in an airplane seat or a “safe” amount of walking to do on an airplane. I recommend as little air travel as possible. An hour or less.
Yes, you might as well drive. At least in a car you can frequently stop and get out and walk around to keep the circulation in your legs from becoming problematical.