Summer can be a lot of fun, but the heat can pose a problem for pregnant women. Hot summer days can prove problematic for women, so it’s important to stay vigilant and cool when Mother Nature calls for a blistering day. Here are three health issues that pregnant women need to consider during the summer.
A lack of water is a concern for everyone in the summer, but pregnant women are even more prone to dehydration. Summer heat can lead to more perspiration, causing your body to lose water. Pregnant women require even more water than they would normally, so it’s important to regularly stay hydrated. A lack of hydration can cause one of the following symptoms:
- Dry mouth
- Loss of appetite
- Flushed skin
Heat Cramps and Exhaustion
Summer heat can lead to plenty of sweat. Your body loses electrolytes when you perspire, which can lead to painful muscle cramps. These cramps are a warning that you should drink some water and cool down. If you don’t pay attention to cramps, you could eventually suffer from heat exhaustion, which is dangerous for both you and the baby. Headache, vomiting, and a fast pulse are all signs that you should reach out to a doctor about heat exhaustion.
Overall Body Heat
It can be easy to get hot during the summer, but too much heat is bad. Summer heat can raise internal body temperatures to dangerous levels for you and the baby. Pregnant women already have a higher resting temperature than people who are not pregnant, and summer temperatures can make your body even warmer. Overly high core temperatures can increase the risk of birth defects, especially for women in the first trimester.
Fending Off the Heat
You can’t stop summer from being hot, but there are ways that you can beat the heat. Regular hydration is a key way to stay cool and help prevent certain heat-related issues. You can also carry a squirt bottle filled with water in case you ever want to spray a cooling mist.
Avoiding heat is also a good plan. Wear light, breathable clothes to reduce heat and sweat. If it’s really hot out, save exercise for cooler times of the day. Swimming is a great form of exercise that can keep you cool at the same time.
If you ever feel like the sun is too much for you, don’t be afraid to contact Westshore Women’s Health. Give us a call at 440-835-6996 or contact Westshore online to make an appointment to learn more about summer’s effects on pregnancy and what you can do to stay cool and healthy.
Dr. Michelle Belardo, MD, FACOG
29160 Center Ridge Road
Suite M, Westlake, OH 44145
DISCLAIMER: This blog is for informational purposes only. It does not replace medical care from a licensed physician. If you have a medical concern, please contact your doctor.