Your Ultimate Summer Pregnancy Survival Guide
Pregnancy is fascinating... and uncomfortable. You're creating a human, but you're also nauseated, swollen and tired. And with a summer pregnancy, you have the heat to deal with too.
Not only is it hotter outside, but your internal body temperature also rises, thanks to the hormone progesterone. When you're not pregnant, progesterone helps regulate your menstrual cycle. After you become pregnant, your body is flooded with progesterone, causing tons of changes - one being an increase in body temperature.
To keep you cool and comfortable this summer, Robert Grayson, MD, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Banner Desert Medical Center, shared these tips:
The best piece of advice is to make sure you drink lots of water. Pregnant women need 50 percent more water - about six 16 ounce glasses a day - no matter the temperature outside. Drinking water not only lowers your core temperature, it also helps with nausea.
Dr. Grayson offered these suggestions for staying hydrated:
- Place a bottle of water on your toilet before you go to bed. When you wake up during the night to use the bathroom, you’ll be reminded to drink. This will keep you hydrated through the night and reduce morning sickness.
- Set an alarm on your phone for every 4 hours during the day to keep your water intake on track. Do your best to drink throughout those 4 hours.
- Span out your water intake rather than drinking lots at once.
Avoid Heat Exposure
You've probably heard not to take hot showers during these 9 months. And there is some truth to it - you won't want to take an extra long, extra hot shower - but Dr. Grayson said a brief, warm shower is perfectly safe when pregnant.
However, taking a hot bath, a dip in a Jacuzzi or doing hot yoga - anything that emerges you in hot air or hot water - are no-nos for the entirety of your pregnancy.
Some other things to be wary of are heated car seats, heating pads and other similar items. When used for long enough these can cause harm to the baby, especially during your first trimester when the baby's organs are forming.
Use Sun Protection
Sun protection is important whether or not you’re pregnant. But in addition to the standard sunscreen and avoiding peak sun hours, Dr. Grayson also recommends wearing loose clothing. Loose clothing allows air to circulate and helps keep your core temperature down.