10 things that can harm my baby… Or not?

Before starting this video I want to thank you because we receive messages full of affection daily and we are having many consultations, both in person and virtual, you send me your studies and we do our best to guide you remotely, in short, I am really very happy to know that these videos help you. They are very useful. So, now returning to how much you have written to us, today I am going to answer 10 of the most frequently asked questions that you have asked us in the last year.

We already have some videos out there that answer most of the questions about nutrition, as well as the most frequent complications and the care to take in each trimester, but the questions in this video are completely separate because they have to do with the fear of harming the baby, that is, mothers who think that something they did or failed to do could have harmed their baby. It is a very real fear and it is essential to clarify clearly which things are myths and which are realities.

Remember that #KnowledgeIsSuccess and during pregnancy, a cautious mother is literally worth two.

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#1 I didn't know I was pregnant and I kept taking contraceptives

Don’t worry, don’t worry, it is an extremely common case. Contraceptives are never 100% effective, there is always the possibility of pregnancy even if it is minimal and for this same reason contraceptives do not contain chemicals that are harmful to the human body but are made with hormones and the only thing hormones do is give orders to various organs, in this case they order the ovary not to release eggs and they order the uterus to make the cervical mucus become thicker to prevent the passage of sperm. So it doesn’t matter if it is the emergency pill or the daily pill, if you are already pregnant the baby will not be affected.

In any case, it is recommended to stop taking contraceptives during pregnancy. Why? Because if the pregnant woman is going to suffer many hormonal changes and with that come nausea, dizziness, mood changes and if we also take more hormones, these discomforts can worsen.

#2 Does it hurt my baby to cry during pregnancy?

Ok, in the first instance the answer is NO and as I just said in the previous question: During pregnancy the mother will have ups and downs in hormonal levels, this will cause very strong mood changes that will require empathy from everyone around you, so please… Don’t tell them that “You can’t cry because it will hurt the baby.” Of course you can cry! They can laugh, they can celebrate, shout or be quiet all day if they want.

When should you cry if it could harm the baby? Well, when it is no longer a sudden cry, when the mother has been depressed and sad for several days and we can suspect that depression exists. Depression as such does not affect the baby’s physical or mental development, that is, the baby’s brain will not change because the mother is depressed… But if the mother suffers from depression, she may stop eating well, stop maintaining active, having trouble falling asleep or simply isolating yourself from the world and this wear and tear can strongly affect your baby. Maternal fetal care is a duality and is about caring for both the baby and the mother.

If you suspect that there is depression, talk to the family and if you can, come see us, we have psychological support and being accompanied makes it easier to overcome these moments.

#3 Should I stop taking medications during pregnancy?

The truth is that it depends, for example, if it is a medication that they acquired without a prescription or they are taking it for a slight discomfort. Of course! The ideal would be to discontinue it or at least check if the label contains any contraindications in pregnancy, but again as I just said, maternal fetal care is about taking care of both and if the mother is taking medications to control blood pressure, regulate vitamin deficiency or combat hormonal problems, it would be wise to talk to your doctor before discontinuing them, it’s very simple, pick up the phone, a call: “Hey Doc, it turns out I’m pregnant, can I continue taking my medication?” or “Do you know what? I just got married and we are thinking about getting pregnant. Can I continue taking this medication or do we need an alternative?” and that’s how easy it is to keep the mother and baby safe.

#4 Can I travel by plane or travel by motorcycle?

Many people think that changes in altitude or pressure on the plane can affect the fetus, but in reality as long as the mother and baby are healthy they can travel by plane without any problem, but if they want to fly they must first talk to the airline because most They have their own regulations and usually have restrictions from week 32 of pregnancy, that is, when it is definitely clear that they are pregnant and they are worried that they will go into labor. Because imagine that your birth comes early in mid-flight! and no airline wants to get into that kind of hassle.

Something similar happens with traveling by motorcycle and it really surprises me how often I am asked if it is possible, some people think that the vibrations of the engine can affect the baby but the vibrations should be the least of their worries. I recommend that mothers stop wearing high heels because one trip can put their pregnancy at risk. Now imagine crashing on the motorcycle! Please don’t do it, don’t put yourselves at risk.

#5 Can I dye my hair or get my nails done?

During the first trimester definitely not, it doesn’t matter if the hair dye is natural and organic or if they hold their noses while they get them done outdoors. In the first trimester is when the baby has its most delicate development and is susceptible to congenital defects due to harmful substances…

And from the second trimester it is safer but please make sure the place is well ventilated and do not use acetones or ammonia, as well as use a commercial dye that specifies all the ingredients well. If it doesn’t have the ingredients listed or it only says “Colors” Don’t use it.

#6 Having a hard or heavy job during pregnancy

Each woman is unique and we know that some have a very high tolerance for exertion and like to be active as much as possible, however, I suggest that you first notify your colleagues and superiors that you are pregnant, this way they could look for ways to Lighten the workload or be alert if you notice signs of fatigue in the mother. Again, remember: Maternal-fetal care is care for both and if you feel comfortable and full of energy despite your efforts, everything will most likely be fine. As soon as you start to feel hot flashes, pain or exhaustion, it would be best to rest a little.

#7 I didn't take folic acid before getting pregnant.

This is definitely the most frequently asked question and on the one hand, the advantage is that if you are healthy and have a balanced diet the chances of a folic acid deficiency are low but, if for any reason you have low levels of folic acid, the baby You could have problems such as spina bifida or poor brain development… So yes, there is definitely the possibility of damage and that is why the recommendation is always to take half a milligram of folic acid every day from the moment you are trying to get pregnant until the end. the first trimester of pregnancy.

#8 If I have sex during pregnancy, can I hurt my baby?

Don’t worry, the baby’s eye won’t be stung nor will there be contact with semen or anything like that. Your baby is perfectly isolated from the outside, the cervix is closed, there is a mucous plug and the baby is enveloped by an amniotic sac. Just be careful not to put too much pressure on your tummy and of course, try not to get into acrobatic or strange positions, we don’t want you to fall and get hurt.

During pregnancy there is a greater volume of circulating blood, so it is a little more likely that there will be small tears in the vagina accompanied by light bleeding, especially if the penetration is very abrupt, but if that bleeding lasts more than a few hours it would be worth the It’s worth going to the doctor to make sure it’s not something more serious. What else can I tell you? Have fun, it’s healthy and natural to seek intimacy during pregnancy.

#9 If I am pregnant, can I sleep on my stomach?

As we already saw, the baby is perfectly protected by the amniotic fluid inside its sac, so if the mother feels comfortable sleeping on her stomach she can do so every night, however, it is most likely that from the second or third trimester, the belly is already too big to sleep on the stomach, but if they sleep on the back, the weight of the belly and the baby could put pressure on the vena cava and make blood circulation very difficult for the mother, so the suggestion would be that they sleep on your side, preferably on the left side and hugging a long pillow between your legs.

#10 Can I get the COVID vaccine or will it harm the baby?

#10 si me vacuno contra el covid ¿Le hace daño al bebé? ¡No! La vacuna del COVID no le hace daño al bebé, por favor vacúnense. Existen muchos más riesgos por enfermarse durante el embarazo que por cualquier reacción que pudieran tener ante la vacuna… Podrían ser algunas molestias pasajeras para la mamá pero así ustedes y su bebé van a estar protegidos.

I am sure that many of you must have other doubts about things that could harm your baby, I hope you can take a look at Creafam, see you in consultation or until the next video.

Dr. Carlos Monsalve
Dr. Carlos Monsalve
Specialist in gynecology and obstetrics

Perinatology, invasive techniques and obstetric ultrasound.
Hospital Universitario La Fe, Valencia, España.

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