Hot tubs are great because they make you feel very relaxed and comfortable. Particularly if you have had a long, tiring day and are aching everywhere, relaxing in a hot tub can make you feel rejuvenated.
Pregnancy comes with own trial and tribulations. Women who are pregnant complain of aches and pains more commonly than other ladies, and rightly so. During this time, the ligaments of your body stretch, particularly those of the lower back and pelvis. The uterus also increases in size and weight and can cause worsening of backache symptoms.
Hormonal changes during this time also result in greater fatigue and general tiredness. Soaking in a hot tub sounds like a great idea to feel comfortable and to relieve your aches and pains, but is it safe?
So Can I Sit In A Hot Tub While Pregnant ?
Avoid Hot Tub Use During The First Trimester
First three months of pregnancy is a very crucial time, because during this time the tiny little organs and systems of a baby are forming. Many birth defects originate during this time. Therefore, it is very important to be careful in this time period and avoid doing anything which can harm the baby.
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists suggests that you should avoid getting your body temperature higher than 102 degree Fahrenheit during the first trimester. Sitting in a hot tub can do just, which is why it is best avoided in these important months.
If the core body temperature is raised too high, it can result in neural tube defects in the baby. These are defects of the spinal cord and brain, and in severe cases can even result in mental retardation or death.
Early miscarriages may also be caused, although the evidence is not conclusive. It is better to be safe than sorry, though.
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Second And Third Trimesters:
Using the hot tub during this time is not free of any risks, either. However, you may use the hot tub with a few precautions
- Don’t stay in the tub for more than 10 minutes
- If you start to feel dizzy, get out immediately. The same goes for if you feel nauseated or feel like you may pass out.
- It is better if you don’t sit near the place from where hot water is ejecting.
- Don’t sit in a hot tub when you are alone. Always make sure there is someone nearby so you may get immediate help if you need it.
- Using a sauna is just as dangerous as using a hot tub
What Can You Do Instead?
If you feel a lot of pain and are very uncomfortable, you can use a heating pad instead of sitting in a hot tub. This will provide heat locally to the area where you apply the pad, so your whole body temperature will not rise. Your aches and pains will also be relieved.
However, even in this case you should remember that applying a hot pad for a long duration of time may be dangerous. Also, don’t apply it to your tummy in any case. If you have severe pain, consult your doctor immediately. For mild backache and fatigue, acetaminophen is a good option.
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