General Information and Precautions


Baths and spas are generally safe in pregnancy.

The dangers occur from a jet of water entering the vagina (so be careful where you sit!) or from prolonged exposure to high temperatures (so keep the temperature moderate or the exposure short).

Most activities are safe in pregnancy but it is sensible to avoid parachuting, bungee jumping, water skiing and snow skiing.Moderate exercise is fine, particularly if you have been used to it.

Be careful with all activities that involve stretching; pregnancy loosens ligaments and injuries may easily occur. Strenuous exercise, particularly if repeated and prolonged, may have adverse effects on fetal growth. Please discuss with me if you have plans for vigorous exercise in pregnancy.

Contact sports need to be undertaken with caution. Babies are well protected but high level direct abdominal trauma is potentially harmful.

General pregnancy supplements such as Elevit or Blackmores pregnancy multivitamins, provided they contain iodine, are recommended for pregnancy.It is possible to achieve the dietary requirements of most essential vitamins and minerals in a normal balanced diet.

Unfortunately, this is not always easy in pregnancy when nausea, vomiting or dietary preferences may interfere. Additionally, iodine deficiency is a significant concern for pregnant women and can be avoided with these supplements.

I may recommend additional iron, folic acid, calcium, magnesium or vitamin D depending on your circumstances.

Sexual relations are generally safe at all stages of pregnancy. It is not unusual to have a small amount of bleeding after sexual intercourse. This is not a cause for concern unless the bleeding is either heavy or recurrent.

If you have a history of miscarriage you may prefer to abstain in the first trimester.

Female orgasm is completely safe.

There are many myths about sleeping positions for pregnancy. You may sleep on either your left or right side at all stages of pregnancy. It is best to avoid lying on your stomach from 12 weeks to avoid “squashing” your baby although the actual risk is very small. It is best to avoid lying on your back from 20 weeks so you avoid compressing the major blood vessels in your abdomen. This can lead to low blood pressure and fainting.

In practice, the risks to your baby are very small. If you wake up and find that you have been lying on your stomach or back do not panic! You will have done no harm; your body has done exactly what it should and woken you to allow a position change.