Nothing attracts unsolicited advice quite like pregnancy.
While most people are well-intentioned in sharing information, but some of it may be less than accurate.
From the silly to the misguided and to the just plain outdated, here’s the truth about seven pregnancy myths.
Myth #1: You can’t drink coffee while you’re pregnant.
Good news! You can drink coffee and other forms of caffeine while pregnant. The key is moderation. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends no more than 200 mg of caffeine a day, so you can safely drink 1 – 2 cups of coffee or 2 – 4 cups of caffeinated tea.
Myth #2: Morning sickness is just in the morning.
Unfortunately, morning sickness can strike at any time of the day or night. The good news is that morning sickness normally subsides after the first trimester. In the meantime, try eating small frequent snacks of crackers, toast or dry cereal to calm your stomach.
Myth #3: You can’t pet cats.
Never fear – you can continue to pet and snuggle your furry friends. This myth has its roots in concerns about toxoplasmosis, a parasitic infection that can be spread by cat feces. All you have to do to protect yourself, though, is have someone else change the litter box and wear gloves when you’re gardening, in case the soil has had contact with cat feces.
Myth #4: You can tell the baby’s sex by the way your belly looks.
While it can be amusing to try to predict baby’s sex by your belly position, your cravings or even baby’s heartrate, the only accurate predictor of your baby’s sex is an ultrasound.
Myth #5: Once you have a c-section, you always have to have them.
Vaginal birth after a cesarean (VBAC) is an option for many women. Whether you are a candidate depends on many factors, such as where C-section scar is and the reason for your first C-section. If you are interested in a VBAC delivery, ask your OB if it could be an option for you.
Myth #6: You shouldn’t exercise while pregnant.
Unless you’ve been told otherwise by your care provider, exercise is often really beneficial during pregnancy. People once worried that certain positions – like raising your arms over your head – would allow the baby’s umbilical cord to wrap around its neck, but your baby moves independently of you. So no matter your position, your baby is okay.
Myth #7: You should eat for two.
As much fun as eating for two sounds, your baby doesn’t need that many extra calories. The ACOG says you need to eat an additional 340 calories per day starting in the second trimester (and a bit more in the third trimester).
Remember, your prenatal care provider is the best source of information. Your provider will work with you to make your pregnancy as safe and comfortable as possible.