Pregnancy can be a difficult time in a woman’s life; your body changes drastically, and starts to function completely differently. With so much going on, everyone’s going to claim to be an expert on the pregnant life but it is good to be a little wary. You may be experiencing the miracle of life, but every Tom, Dick and Harry has opinion and advice to share. Here are some myths about Pregnancy that you should not put any stock in…
Myth: The shape of your baby bump can help determine whether the fetus is a girl or a boy.
It’s widely believed that a lower bump means a boy child while a bump closer to the abdomen means you will have a girl child. This is a myth with no scientific backing or proof. There are medical means to determine the sex of the baby but due to high abortion rates of female fetuses in rural India, these tests are no longer legal in India.
Myth: Eating Papaya during pregnancy is harmful and can cause miscarriages.
This myth is not entirely untrue, but a clarification is required. Ripe papaya contains nutrients which are beneficial to the fetus. Unripe papaya, with green skin however, contains latex and papain, which could cause contractions in the uterus and turn out to be very harmful. If you are a papaya lover, make sure you stick to the ripe version of the fruit.
Myth: You are eating for two during pregnancy.
This is categorically untrue. The body requires extra nutrients, but not enough for two individuals. This too is really only needed during the last 12 weeks of pregnancy. Regardless of your appetite during pregnancy, be mindful about your nutrition intake and steer clear of excessive junk food.
Myth: Having sex may hurt the fetus.
A fetus is heavily protected by the mother’s body with the abdominal wall and the amniotic sac. Having sex is completely safe as long as no pressure is applied to the stomach area. The only time abstinence is suggested is in cases of complicated, high risk pregnancies. So go at it!
Myth: Pregnant women should rest and avoid exercise during pregnancy.
This is a rather common myth in India, among rural and urban India, which is untrue and has no scientific basis. If you have been exercising before your pregnancy, you can continue during. In fact, pregnancy is the ideal time to start exercising as it increases metabolism, blood flow, and keeps you healthy. It’s actually good for you to get off your feet! You can go for walks, do yoga, go swimming and even visit the gym . Although, be sure to not overdo it, and to consult your doctor about the kinds of exercises recommended for you personally.
Myth: Your skin glows during pregnancy.
There is some truth here. During pregnancy, your blood flow increases, which makes your skin look vibrant. However, this can go one of two ways. Some women have breakouts and pigmented skin due to the hormonal storm going on inside them, which makes their skin appear worse. Not to worry, your skin returns to normal after childbirth, eventually.
Myth: If your mom had an uncomplicated pregnancy and an easy delivery, so will you.
Genetics do not play a role in the delivery of the child. Whether you will have an easy delivery is more likely to depend on factors like your lifestyle, the baby’s position, and your diet.
Every region in India has some superstitions and myths regarding pregnancy, like in south Gujarat, they believe the mother should not wash her hair at all during pregnancy. These seven however, seem to be the most common across cultures.
Pregnancy is an important time and it’s always a good idea to consult a medical professional before blindly following what everyone around you is telling you to do. Beware of false information and do what is right for you!