9 Myths About Pregnancy That We Still Believe In

One of the most difficult things about becoming an expecting mom is sifting through all of the information you find online. There are thousands upon thousands of blogs, articles, apps and columns that give pregnancy advice and information. It’s a saturated market that will make you frustrated and cause you to question everything you’ve ever known.

So how do you figure out what is true and what is hogwash?

One website might say that your baby will be born with a cleft palate if they’re born on an eclipse where another says that you should avoid physical exercise during pregnancy. Disclaimer: neither of these statements is accurate.

There are mothers who swear that some of the pregnancy myths floating around are true and when your hormones are elevated, it’s easy to buy into anything. You will read things on the Internet that are true, but other things are outdated and shouldn’t worry you.

We’re here to help you get on the right foot to stay happy and healthy throughout your pregnancy. Thus, we’ll help you to identify some of the most common myths about pregnancy that you’ve likely fallen victim to. Check them out below!

1. You Should Eat For Two

This is easily the most common, and believable, thing that you’ve heard once you’ve conceived. All of your friends, family and even your partner will tell you that it’s okay to indulge because you’re eating for two now. Unfortunately, they’re wrong.

In fact, pregnant women should actually be monitoring their caloric intake. In the first trimester, you don’t need any extra calories and in the second and third you only need an additional 300-450 calories a day. There are specific weight gain guidelines that you should research and talk to your doctor so that you know what’s best for your body.

Instead of focusing on eating more, you should instead focus on eating well. Choose natural, whole foods with limited preservatives to meet your body’s daily needs for macro and micronutrients.

However, if you have a craving feel free to indulge every now and then… you deserve it!

2. Exercise During Pregnancy Harms Your Baby

The next widely believed myth is that exercise is harmful to your baby. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. As long as you’re healthy and are not experiencing any problems, regular physical activity is one of the best things to do for your health during pregnancy.

If you’re an avid athlete, chances are that you’ll be able to continue a more-or-less similar routine during pregnancy, but always talk to your doctor first.

If you’ve never been big on physical activity, pregnancy is the perfect time to start. Start with slow and easy exercises so that you don’t hurt yourself or your baby and work your way up. Check out this article for some great tips for beginners.

3. Having a Baby After 30 Increases Your Risk

One thing that creeps into our minds and elicits a gnawing fear with pregnancy is our age. We’ve constantly been told that as you get older, it’s more difficult and more dangerous to get pregnant. However, that’s not the case.

In fact, most of the data that tells us this was collected over 200 years ago… How that’s still relevant and widely told? We don’t know.

It’s good to know that even as you reach 40 years old, you’re still very likely to get pregnant if you are healthy. You can find more information here, but the important thing is to realize that you’re in far better shape than you might think.

4. Eating Fish is Harmful to Your Baby

We’ve all heard the tales of the inevitable damage that raw fish and mercury does to our developing babies, but is it all true? Surprisingly, it’s not.

There are many different types of fish that are actually beneficial to pregnancy, in certain doses, and the FDA is starting to recommend eating more3. There are specific types of fish you should avoid, but even sushi doesn’t have to be completely ruled out.

The biggest risk in eating raw fish is the possibility of bacteria that could be present. However, if you eat at a reputable restaurant with high-grade sushi, it’s unlikely this will be a problem4. Stick to the fish that are low in mercury and you’ll be fine.

5. Ultrasounds Are Bad For Your Baby

Ultrasounds are important for monitoring fetal development. They are also commonly used in order to determine gender, find any irregularities and even monitor possible problems throughout your pregnancy. In fact, doctors recommend that pregnant women should get an ultrasound at least once each trimester.

Unfortunately, recently there has been a lot of bad stigma attached to getting an ultrasound. People believe that the imaging sends harmful rays into your fetus and causes more problems than they’re good for.

Ultrasounds use high-frequency sound waves rather than harmful x-rays, which means there is no radiation. The radiation is what makes certain scans harmful, so there’s no need to worry at your next appointment.

6. All Pain Relief During Pregnancy is Bad

There’s a lot of rumors that spread about pain relief, both when you’re pregnant and not. Unfortunately, this causes a lot of mothers to be to go through some intense periods of suffering. While there are a lot of drugs that you need to avoid while pregnant, there are safe options for pain relief.

Drugs are measured on a scale from A – D on how dangerous they are to take while pregnant. It is commonly known that Class A and B drugs are thought to be generally safe for pregnancy, while C and D should be avoided at all costs.

If you are experiencing any pain during pregnancy, check with your doctor before taking any medication. They will be able to better advise you on what is safe and what is not and may even be able to find the root of your pain.

7. Avoid Hair Dye, Manicures and Pedicures

A lot of women hit the salon. It’s a great way to get an extra boost of confidence and feel a bit more put together, especially during pregnancy. However, there’s a lot of talk going around that the cosmetic products being used contain harmful chemicals that will harm your baby.

While this isn’t 100% untrue (cosmetic products do contain chemicals), there are some options available to you. Most high-quality products don’t contain overly dangerous ingredients; you just need to pay attention to the ingredients. Check out this list of cosmetic chemicals to avoid while you’re pregnant.

If you find a salon that uses safe cosmetic products, just make sure that everything is sterilized well as infection is often more dangerous than the chemicals used.

8. Sex During Pregnancy Could be Harmful to Your Baby

If you’ve fallen privy to this myth then pay special attention. Sex during pregnancy will not harm your baby in any way. As long as you’re not feeling uncomfortable or any pain, then please proceed. In fact, sex during pregnancy is healthy!

Having sex with your partner while you’re pregnant will not only improve your health, it will also keep your intimacy strong and provide numerous emotional benefits. Don’t be afraid to hit the sheets with your partner, but if you feel any discomfort during intercourse then it’s better to stop and talk to your doctor before trying again.

9. Stress is Detrimental for Pregnant Women

When you hear the word “stress” you often immediately think of negativity and intense situations. Don’t get us wrong, chronic stress is bad for everyone and even worse for pregnant women, but life is full of small stressful moments. Don’t let those stress you out even more. Sometimes you just need to let it out.

A little bit of stress here and there isn’t going to harm your baby. It is much healthier to recognize the stress and let it pass than to constantly worry and induce anxiety about whether or not everything is going well and if your baby is okay.

If you find yourself overly stressed, try some of these great stress relief exercises.

Conclusion

When you first find out that you’re pregnant there are already so many things running through your mind. However, with this list of myths, hopefully we’ve helped you separate fact from fiction. If you have any questions about your personal pregnancy, or any worries or concerns, talk to your primary doctor. Also, remember that the Affordable Care Act allows you to receive a breast pump through Byram Healthcare at no additional cost to you. Visit our website to find other great pregnancy tips, info, and product reviews.

If you have any personal stories about fun pregnancy facts or myths, head over to our Facebook page and share with our community of new and expecting moms! We all love a good story.

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