Come pregnancy and you are bound to be greeted with a lot more than just some ‘good’ news. Of course, there are perks of being pregnant, the biggest one being able to hold your baby in your arms at the end of it. But the journey toward that is filled with amazing highs, depressing lows, and a wide galore of advice. And let’s not forget the myths! Yes, like everything else, pregnancy too is not immune to myths. Here we debunk 9 of the biggest myths associated with pregnancy:
1. Myth: Pregnant Women Should Eat For Two
Fact: This had to top our list. The moment you announce your pregnancy (which is usually after the completion of the first trimester), the immediate concern of people is if you’ve started eating for two. Sure, your nutritional requirements increase during this time. But it certainly does not mean that you should overeat. Instead, you should gradually increase your calorie intake trimeter-wise, which your doctor will help you with (1).
2. Myth: Heartburn During Pregnancy Means The Baby Will Be Born With More Hair
Fact: Heartburn and acidity are common during pregnancy. But does it really mean your baby will be born hairy? There is limited evidence to confirm if this is true. However, a small study was conducted on 28 participants where pregnant women complained of moderate-to-severe heartburn. It was found that 23 of them gave birth to babies with average to above-average hair (2).
3. Myth: Exercising Should Be Avoided During Pregnancy
Fact: Maybe it’s the fear of miscarriage or early labor, but often pregnant women are asked to take complete rest and not exercise at all during pregnancy. The fact is pregnant women can engage in some light or moderate exercises. However, if they’ve been sedentary before getting pregnant, then they should check with the doctor first before starting on an exercise routine (3).
4. Myth: Morning Sickness Occurs Only In The Morning
Fact: Don’t let the moniker mislead you. Apparently, less than 2% of pregnant women experience morning sickness only during the mornings. For a majority of them, though, morning sickness can last throughout the day (4).
5. Myth: Intercourse Should Be Avoided During Pregnancy
Fact: Most couples are scared that they might end up hurting the baby. Due to this, they completely avoid lovemaking during pregnancy. Experts believe the lovemaking during low-risk pregnancies does not have any adverse effects. Those with high-complication pregnancies can check with the doctor to get the green signal (5).
6. Myth: Pregnant Women Should Avoid Cats
Fact: The cat feces is believed to carry certain harmful disease-causing bacteria. This disease is known as toxoplasmosis. Thus, a pregnant woman should avoid clearing the cat’s feces by asking someone else to do it or wearing gloves. If pregnant women take this one precaution, they can be safe around cats (6).
7. Myth: Coffee Should Be Completely Off-Limits During Pregnancy
Fact: Yes, caffeine is not safe during pregnancy. But this doesn’t mean you cannot drink your regular cup of coffee each day. Pregnant women should reduce caffeine intake during pregnancy to 200 mcg per day or less, which is within the safe limits of caffeine consumption (7).
8. Myth: Pregnancy Makes A Woman Feel Happy All The Time
Fact: Of course, the news of becoming a mother soon can make a woman happy if she has been planning it for a while now. However, don’t be surprised if she turns snappy or cranky. The hormonal upheavals, fatigue, and body changes during pregnancy can easily take a toll on a pregnant woman’s emotions and moods. So, don’t expect her to exhibit happiness all the time (8).
9. Myth: Vaginal Delivery After A C-Section Is Not Possible
Fact: Had a C-section for your first delivery? Don’t be disheartened if people tell you that you cannot have a vaginal delivery the second time around. You may still be able to deliver normally considering how your next pregnancy progresses. If there are no risks or complications and labor goes just fine, you might have a safe vaginal delivery (9).
Now that you’ve got your facts right, you can easily snub anyone who throws these myths at you during your pregnancy. And, of course, you can always take assurance from your doctor in case of any lingering doubts.