Summer Activities for Expecting Moms
June 28, 2016
School’s out and summer is in full swing. As the weather warms up and vacations start to fill up the calendar, expecting moms need to be cautious about how they are spending their spare time. Pregnancy doesn’t mean that women have to miss out on all the fun. But slight alterations in summer activities may be needed to ensure the safety of both mom and baby. Check out our tips that every expecting mom should keep in mind this summer.
Summer is the peak time for families to head to their local amusement park for fun-filled days of rides and other attractions. However, women who are pregnant should skip the rollercoasters or fast-moving rides with high peaks and valleys or sharp turns. Such jarring motions and pressure against the body may cause the placenta to separate from the uterus. This could cause difficulties with the pregnancy for both mom and baby. Women who are expecting should opt instead for a leisurely ride on the Ferris wheel to seek some thrills at the amusement park. They should also follow signs posted next to rides that warn of dangers to pregnant women..
As a general rule, expecting moms should incorporate light to moderate cardiovascular activity into their daily routines. But they should stick with walks of 30 to 45 minutes. If jogging was part of an exercise regimen before pregnancy, light to moderate jogging while pregnant should be OK. Expecting moms should check with a health care provider for a recommended exercise regimen. They also should avoid contact sports for their cardio workouts. Unfortunately, many contact and team sports may involve direct hits to the abdomen. This type of trauma can be harmful to the baby during pregnancy.
Stretching and Flexibility
Staying loose and limber throughout pregnancy may help with labor and an easier pregnancy in general. Prenatal yoga is an excellent option to stretch and lengthen muscles, tendons and ligaments. Some poses are specifically targeted for the needs of expecting mothers. Plus, yoga focuses on relaxation and meditation. This may come in handy before and during labor and delivery. Avoid gymnastics or tumbling while pregnant. Such activities require a great deal of twisting and turning, are higher impact exercises, and often involve jerking or inversions. These types of motions may be dangerous to mom and baby during pregnancy.
For some women, horseback riding is not just a fun hobby; it’s their livelihood. Unfortunately it is high on the list of activities that should be avoided during pregnancy. Even for experienced riders, falling or being thrown from a horse is part of the process. Low impact aerobics can help keep the same muscle groups toned, but eliminate the possibility of falling or being thrown. It’s important to note that pregnant women should avoid high impact aerobics, as it involves extensive jumping, hopping and bouncing.
Soaking in a sauna or hot tub on a summer night may sound like the perfect way to unwind from a busy day. But pregnant women should opt for a prenatal massage or pedicure to de-stress. According to the Mayo Clinic, just 10 minutes in a hot tub can raise the body’s internal temperature to 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Studies have shown an increased risk of neural tube defects, which are serious abnormalities of the brain or spinal cord, in babies of women who experience high temperatures during the first four to six weeks of pregnancy.1
Swimming is perfectly suited for women who are pregnant. It’s an excellent way to keep the body toned without adding stress to joints. Swimming can be especially beneficial in the second and third trimesters as moms-to-be start carrying more weight as the baby develops. Swimming also provides cardiovascular benefits. But water sports associated with a risk of falling, such as surfing or skiing, should be avoided. In addition, scuba diving is not recommended during pregnancy. When ascending to the surface from a dive, the body must decompress. This process can create gas bubbles in the baby’s blood, which can cause many health problems.2
Nutritional Support for Mothers & Babies
As moms-to-be are busy this summer having fun with family and friends, their prenatal nutrition is important as ever. Regular prenatal checkups and nutrition should not be sacrificed as the summer calendar starts to fill up. The Prenate® Vitamin Family is committed to promoting women’s health in every season. Prenate® Vitamins can help support mother and baby throughout pregnancy and through labor and delivery. Even with a balanced and healthy diet, many women have trouble meeting their daily recommended intakes for certain vitamins and minerals. Talk to your doctor to see if a prenatal vitamin may be right for you to help fill nutritional gaps.