Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What About a Bath?

I am getting many new questions from my groups this year. Maybe my clients are listening more closely. I have been advising for decades that Braxton-Hicks contractions can be manipulated and one way to make them "go away" is to sit in the bathtub ( with water in it ). Several women have suggested that they were told not to tub bathe by their providers.

I have done some checking ( even though I know the answers )  and I would like to clarify based on what I have again gathered from midwives and MDs. Tub bathing is perfectly fine in all trimesters of pregnancy, unless you are sure that your amniotic sac has indeed ruptured.

Hot tubs are the issue. If you sit in a true hot tub, you run the risk of raising your core body temperature to 102 degrees F. and that is the definition of hyperthermia. Hyperthermia may cause miscarriage. It may also cause neural tube defects which are very serious injuries to the central nervous system of your developing baby, if you experience this condition in the earliest weeks of pregnancy ( 4-6 weeks ). If you even think you may be pregnant, stay out of hot tubs.

Stay out of hot tubs if you are pregnant. Use the bath tub in your home anytime you'd like unless you think that your "water" has broken or you think that you are "leaking". Get out of your bath tub if you have a fever, if you start to sweat or feel uncomfortable. Get out of your bath tub at home if you are turning your feet the color of cooked lobsters. The idea is not to raise your core body temperature to over 101 degrees F. to be safe. You may want to use the "ducky" that you plan on using to test the temperature of the baby's bath water. But I think any thermometer made to immerse in hot water will do.