As your pregnancy progresses, you should avoid any activity that puts you at risk for falling or increases the chance of trauma to your abdomen. And the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) notes that activities at altitudes over 6,000 feet may carry some risks, as less oxygen is available for you and your baby.
Research is conflicting about whether raising your core body temperature through exercise can harm your baby, but we do know that the following activities can cause problems during pregnancy:
Amusement park rides: Waterslides and other rides at amusement parks are a no-no, since a forceful landing or sudden start or stop could harm your baby.
Bicycling: Cycling isn't a good idea for newbies, but experienced riders may be able to continue until their second trimester, when a shifting center of gravity affects balance and can make cycling dangerous.
Contact sports: Soccer, basketball, and hockey put you at a high risk of injury from a ball or puck, a collision with another player, or a fall during play.
Downhill skiing: ACOG advises against downhill skiing anytime during pregnancy because of the risk of serious injuries and hard falls. If you choose to ski, stick to gentle slopes and be aware that you may have problems with balance as your belly expands. A safer choice is cross-country skiing, which is also much better for building cardiovascular fitness. Avoid skiing at altitudes above 6,000 feet, where there's less oxygen for you and your baby.
Gymnastics: Same risk of falling and increased chance of trauma to your abdomen.
Horseback riding: Even if you're a good rider, it's not worth risking a fall.
Post-sport tubs and saunas: Soaking in hot tubs and Jacuzzis or sitting in a sauna can be dangerous to your developing baby because overheating has been linked to birth defects.
Running: If you weren't a runner before you got pregnant, now's not the time to take it up. Otherwise, it's fine in moderation. From your second trimester on, when the risk of falling increases, you should run with caution. As with all forms of exercise, avoid becoming overheated, and drink plenty of water to replace fluids lost through sweating.
Scuba diving: This is an absolute no. As you surface, air bubbles can form in your bloodstream, which can be very dangerous for both you and your growing baby.
Snowboarding: Same risk of falling and increased chance of trauma to your abdomen.
Surfing: Same risk of falling and increased chance of trauma to your abdomen.
Tennis: A moderately paced game of tennis is okay if you played before you became pregnant. But you may have problems with balance and sudden stops, so watch your step. Most women find that it's hard to keep up their game as their bellies get bigger in the second and third trimesters.
Waterskiing: Another activity that puts you at risk for falling and increases the chance of trauma to your abdomen.
- soft and blue-veined cheese, such as Camembert, Brie and Stilton. (There is no risk of listeria associated with hard cheese such as cheddar, cottage cheese or processed cheese),
- p?t? (any type, including vegetable),
- certain prepared salads such as potato salad and coleslaw, and
ready-prepared meals or re-heated food, unless they are piping hot all the way through.
- Avoid food containing raw or partially cooked eggs, such as homemade mayonnaise, and some mousses and sauces. You should only eat eggs if they are cooked until both the white and the yolk are solid.
- Avoid unpasteurised dairy products.
- Cook all meat and poultry thoroughly, and take particular care with products made from minced meat, such as sausages and burgers.
- Make sure these are cooked until they are piping hot all the way through and no pink meat is left.
- Take particular care with meat at barbeques, parties and buffets.
- Bacteria breed quickly on food that is left uncovered in a warm environment.
- Make sure that raw meat does not come into contact with other food (for example in the fridge), particularly food that is already cooked or that will be eaten raw.
- Always wash your hands after handling raw meat.
- unwashed raw fruit and vegetables,
- raw or undercooked meat, and
- unpasteurised goats' milk or goats' cheese.
Waterskiing, horseriding, snowboarding, downhill skiing or surfing may be your favourite sports but put them all on hold while you're pregnant. For now, you should avoid any activity that puts you at risk of falling. That includes activities like tennis or cycling if you're not used to them, as your sense of balance may be altered. Vigorous jogging that puts pressure on your joints or back should also be avoided. Scuba diving and other 'pressurised' sports are out since air bubbles can form in your blood stream as you surface. These bubbles are very dangerous for both you and your growing baby. Cross waterslides and most amusement park rides are off your list too, as a forceful landing or sudden acceleration or deceleration could harm your baby. Some studies show that raising your temperature during early pregnancy can increase the risk of birth defects so you should avoid saunas and Jacuzzis, as well.
Also avoid exercising in the heat and if you were a couch potato before you got pregnant, don't suddenly take up strenuous exercise now. After week 16, avoid exercise that involves lying flat on your back with raised legs, such as sit-ups, as the weight of your uterus may press on major blood vessels.
You may take a first start on simply walking. Swimming is also beneficial. But never engage on sports activities. You may also continue on your regular workout in an air conditioned gym to avoid heat stroke. Take extra precaution to avoid exhaustion.
Last edited by shanrocks; 02-20-2013 at 01:00 PM.
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