Pregnancy Do's and Don'ts : The Smart Woman's A-Z Pocket Companion for a Safe and Sound Pregnancy
For when you need the facts--not fear--about what food, drinks, activities, and procedures you should avoid during each month of your pregnancy.
Over the years, Dr. Elisabeth Aron has soothed the worries of many soon-to-be moms who have come to her with questions such as:
- Can I exercise during my first trimester?
- Is canned tuna safe to eat throughout my pregnancy?
- Do self-tanners contain chemicals I should be worried about?
- I have to fly for work during my second trimester. Is this safe?
- Is cookie-dough ice cream safe to eat?
- Can I wear an underwire bra during my pregnancy?
- I'm six months pregnant. Is it alright for me to have a glycolic peel facial?
- Are peanuts safe to eat or will my baby develop a peanut allergy if I eat too many?
- There is a lot of chlorine in my health club's pool. Is that a good or bad thing?
Pregnancy Do's and Don'ts includes hundreds of entries on possible concerns--from apple cider to zinc and everything in between. In each entry, Dr. Aron identifies the item, the possible cause for concern, and explains the bottom line--whether it is something a woman should avoid completely, something to take a better-safe-than-sorry approach toward, or something that is perfectly fine.
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June 12, 2006
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Excerpt from Pregnancy Do's and Don'ts by Elisabeth Aron
[A] Accutane®SeeIsotretinoin. Acetaminophen Acetaminophen, also known as Anacin-3(r), Datril(r), Panadol(r), Tylenol(r), and Valorin(r), is an over-the-counter pain medication (seePain relievers) and fever reducer. It is an ingredient in numerous cold and flu remedies (seeCough and cold suppressants). Concerns: A scientific study noted a link between high (almost everyday) acetaminophen use in the third trimester of pregnancy and wheezing and asthma in children. There was no link with average or high use prior to 20 weeks of pregnancy. Acetaminophen has been assigned a pregnancy risk factor category of B (seeAppendix 1). Although controlled studies have not been performed on humans, there is no evidence that taking an occasional acetaminophen or two during pregnancy causes any problems. Further, a prolonged high fever in pregnancy could cause problems for the baby, so you should always try to bring a fever down with acetaminophen. The bottom line: Acetaminophen is considered to be the safest pain reliever and fever reducer in pregnancy. It is viewed as the pain reliever of choice in pregnancy. Acidophilus Acidophilus is a nutritional supplement that contains the bacteriaLactobacillus acidophilus. Many people think that the bacteria aid in digestion and play a role in keeping our immune systems healthy. Acidophilus can be taken orally as a capsule or powder, or is present in some brands of yogurt (see Yogurt). It is also available as a vaginal suppository to treat yeast infections. Concerns: Because acidophilus is categorized as a food supplement, it is not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Thus, there is no guarantee of the strength, purity, or safety of this product. If you are experiencing a pregnancy complication, you may want to avoid vaginal suppositories. It is a good idea to inform your health care provider if you are taking any nutritional supplements. The bottom line: Some studies have observed beneficial digestive effects from taking acidophilus by mouth or using it in a vaginal suppository to treat vaginal yeast infections. Acidophilus may also aid in the treatment of chronic diarrhea; however, its usefulness in other conditions is unclear. Acidophilus appears to be safe in pregnancy. Acrylic nails Acrylic nails are artificial nails created by a liquid monomer and a powdered polymer that are combined to form an epoxy. The mixture is then shaped and applied over the natural nail or to a plastic tip that has been glued to the nail. The result is a strong, natural-looking nail that can last for several weeks. Concerns: Because most manicurists find it necessary to wear face masks to avoid breathing in fumes, many pregnant women have concerns about having this treatment and about visiting salons where this treatment is performed. It is also known that some chemicals can be absorbed into the natural nail itself. No studies have been performed that deal specifically with acrylic nails and pregnancy, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has deemed one ingredient used in acrylic nails, methyl-methacrylate (MMA), a health hazard due to the potential of allergic reactions and asthma exacerbations. Be sure to ask your salon if this chemical is used on the premises. Stay clear of any salon that still uses MMA, regardless of pregnancy status. The ingredient ethyl-methacrylate (EMA) is a safer alternative. The bottom line: If you are worried, avoid the treatment outright while pregnant. Make every effort to limit potential effects by waiting until after the first trimester, when there is less risk to the development of the baby's organs; go to a well-ventilated salon; visit earlier in the day when there are less fumes; consider wearing a mask; and avoid getting chemicals on your skin. Acupressure Acupressure is a less inv