5 Most Common Myths About Pregnancy

5 Most Common Myths About Pregnancy

5 Most Common Myths About Pregnancy - Myths And Facts About Pregnancy » 5 Common Pregnancy Myths DebunkedWhen you are pregnant, don’t you just hate the fact that each and every woman that you meet, irrespective of her being your mother or a random lady on your bus stop, has some or the other advice or comment or tip about your visibly delicate situation?

I know that I sure did, simply because all these ‘talks’ always left me second guessing what my doctor had told me, or what I had read. So yes, like you, I also used to pretty much spend most of my day worrying about the various ways in which I might just unknowingly be hurting my baby and hence the overall chances of having a healthy, normal pregnancy.

Looking back after a year of having a healthy baby, I now realise that much of the ‘so called wisdom’ I spend endless hours pondering on, was in fact just plain bunk. While some old wives tales hold muster even today, most of them have been proved to be nothing more than just rumours, with no scientific backing or explanation. Let me take on five such myths, that you must have at some time or another come across in your pregnancy.

You can successfully guess the gender of your baby

It is common for people to say that women, who carry low, are going to have a baby boy, and those carrying higher shall have a girl. You will also hear that if as an expectant mother you suffer from acne, then you shall have a girl. Another tale says that should you crave salty food then you will have a boy. Craving for sweets indicates a girl is on the way.

According to science all this is simply bunk, as there is no way in which by simply looking at an expectant mother’s stomach or face you can tell the gender of the child she is carrying. This is because the way a mother carries, totally depends on her body type, her posture and overall structure.

Hence, on looking closer you will realize that all tall, thin women appear to be carrying higher. There is just one way of knowing your child’s gender and that is scientifically, through either an ultrasound or amniocentesis.

The more you eat, the healthier will be your baby

This myth is an extension of the ‘eat for two’ myth, and hence does not pass muster. This is because over eating or binge eating while pregnant does not serve any purpose whatsoever, as it only worsens your morning sickness, or indigestion.

This is because once our stomach is taken over by the baby’s sac, its capacity and ability to digest food is hampered greatly. If under such circumstances you insist on shoving heavy doses of food into your stomach, it simply stops digesting it all together, creating that dreaded retching sensation.

Science has proved that the food we consume, while carrying, is simply not directly proportional to the weight your baby will be born with. The only thing that can guarantee a healthy baby is frequent nutritional meals, loads of water and a lot of rest.

Having sex might hurt the baby

This is one myth that has generally not being questioned as often as it should have been, simply because most women don’t like to discuss their intimate queries with doctors, and hence generally go by what they hear most often. While traditionally we are advised to abstain from all physical activity while carrying, there is no scientific reason to do so.

For the uninitiated, the fact of the matter is that a baby is not just floating freely inside our body, he is enveloped in an amniotic sac made of pure protein and muscle. Plus there are about six more layers between the sac and the abdominal wall to which his sac is tethered.

Also, when pregnant, a woman’s cervix is known to lengthen and harden to prepare for the oncoming delivery. Another important protection is all the vaginal discharge that the cervix produces to keep the area clean and free of any/all infections. Given all this, intercourse has absolutely no impact on your baby. However, if your doctor has asked you to abstain, then please do so, as it may lead to complications.

Never lie on your back

As you get along in your pregnancy a good night’s sleep will get more and more difficult to come by. This is so because the baby keeps growing and getting heavier. As a result when you lie down, especially when you lie down flat, the whole weight of the baby its sac and the womb directly puts pressure on your rib cage, which in turn makes breathing difficult and even painful.

Hence, it is in the best interest of both you and your baby that whenever you rest, you lie on your left side, as not only does this remove pressure off your heart, it pumps more blood to your baby’s placenta . But you can easily lie on your back for short periods of time, to avoid cramping your left side.

By doing this you will not be strangulating your baby, as is often said, you will only be putting yourself through discomfort, that’s all. But after an ultrasound, if your doctor tells you to sleep on the left, then you obviously should.

Avoid coloring hair

While this is not entirely a myth, it is not completely a fact either. This is because; due to their delicate condition pregnant women must avoid all things with heavy, toxic chemicals. This applies to all things they handle, such as the food they eat to the creams, lotions, make-up and hair color they use. Hair color dyes are generally very rich in ammonia, with some releasing semi-toxic fumes on application, and hence are generally advised to be avoided.

While these many do little or no damage to you, they can do a lot of damage to your baby’s semi-formed lungs, by puncturing them, or even retarding their development. Hence, color or dye your hair if you want but use an organic color that is safe for both you and the baby. Similarly consume all natural and fresh produce when you can. Simply stay away from all and any artificial or chemical based substances.

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