PREGNANCY DURING SUMMER
Our minds are all busy with dreams of holiday since we are approaching summer. People first think about sun, sand and sea when holiday is considered. The dream to submerge your body into cool water under the hot sunlight or make use of swimming pools at home, sports clubs or hotels; it is the most common type of leisure or holiday at summer season. How about pregnant women? Should they avoid sun bath and sea at hot summer days?
Of course NOT… On the contrary, swimming is the most useful activity during pregnancy period other than jogging.
Create opportunities to swim
You may work out all muscles by swimming and in addition, you may also feel psychological relaxation. You may swim in the sea or swimming pools where you are sure about the hygienic conditions.
All muscle groups in arms, legs and abdominal region are worked out during swimming. Blood supply to the baby increases since heart rate increases resulting with increased volume of inhaled oxygen.
Another advantage is that a swimming person does not feel his/her body weight. This provides particularly psychological benefit to pregnant women in the last trimester of pregnancy. Moreover, negative influences of exercises are avoided since it is not possible to sweat in water and body temperature does not elevate.
In limited number of studies, it was demonstrated that pregnant women who regularly swim during pregnancy felt less tired, had better sleep pattern and that they could better struggle against emotional and physical stresses secondary to pregnancy.
There are some important issues requiring consideration when one swims during pregnancy:
First, the body should be slowly adapted to the temperature of water, swimming pace should be slow and dose should be gradually increased.
20-minute swimming per day is adequate for women in first trimester of pregnancy. Again, in first trimester, swimming at early morning hours may reduce severity of nausea and vomiting secondary to pregnancy and it may also be beneficial for feeling better in remaining part of day.
In second trimester, water supports joints and ligaments resulting with reduction in back and low back pains.
Physical exercise activities made on land may also be performed in water. The advantage is prevention of sweating and excess body temperature. When you work out in water, the best depth is that water surface is aligned to the nipples. This rule also applies to swimming. Particularly, women who often suffer cramps should not swim at deep water exceeding height of relevant subject. One should be careful not to swim alone in order to seek help in the event of a possible cramp and one should avoid diving by holding breath for long time.
More challenging days start for pregnant women when air temperature gradually increases. Blood pressure drastically increases throughout pregnancy period. Body temperature elevates secondary to hormonal changes and increased rate of blood circulation and problems start to occur when hot weather is added to this picture. Some simple methods and minor details may enable you to cope with those stressful days. Protect yourself against hot weather and excess exposure to sun light.
One should take attention to avoid going out between 11:00 AM and 04:00 PM as much as possible in order not to expose to sunlight. Sunlight is more vertical and efficient at the specified period of day and if one requires going out, sunscreen with high protection factors should be applied on skin and a hat should be worn.
Stayin at the shade should be preferred during walks; garments should be light-colored and made of fine cotton fabric. One should often take a break and water should be consumed. Pregnant women should enjoy summer via jogging at early morning or later afternoon hours.
Sun burn and sun spots are commonly observed during pregnancy secondary to influences of hormones. In this period, skin inclines to easily get tanned and result in sun spots.
Sunlight is particularly effective in formation of facial brown spots which are referred as melasma of pregnancy in colloquial speech. Suitable sunscreen lotions containing UVA and UVB filters should be applied on skin 30 minutes before exposure to sunlight.
Hormonal changes and extremely hot weather may also lead to vaginal and rectal itching and feeling of burn which is referred as "vaginal fungal infection" in colloquial speech. Therefore, body should be completely dried after one swims in sea or swimming pool and underwear should be changed when one sweats. Synthetic and tight garments should be avoided and drugs and cleaning agents advised by doctor should be used.