We are all surrounded by chemicals and toxins, be it in the atmosphere, on the road, or at home. Every day we use and come in touch with a toxin in the house and outside. When a woman gets pregnant, she is advised to skip alcohol or smoke to avoid any chances of congenital disabilities, miscarriage, or stillbirth. Additionally, there are many chemicals and products we use in everyday life, which are toxins for pregnant mothers and should be avoided as much as possible.
Toxins to Avoid in Pregnancy
Though exposure to chemicals and certain household products in small quantities doesn’t cause much harm, if the exposure is in large amounts, it may lead to congenital disorders for the baby. The toxins in the household products would enter the mother’s bloodstream and pass onto the baby through the placenta. Some of these household toxins are:
1. Pesticides and Herbicides
These sprays and medicines affect the pregnant mother and developing fetus. The expecting mother must stay far away from these two medicinal household chemicals. If spraying pesticide or insecticide is necessary, assign the work to someone else or ask a pest control professional to do it.
2. Cleaning Products
Though the majority of cleaning products and essentials are safe, certain household chemicals develop wheezing in newborn babies. It is essential to wear gloves and a protective mask and avoid breathing in the fumes gushing out of ovens and cleaners.
Avoid any solvent-based paints and old paintwork essentials as they contain traces of lead. Instead, choose a water-based color for your home and use a paintbrush or roller rather than a spray to paint the house. Ventilate the room well when you paint or better ask someone else to do it.
4. Mosquito Repellent
Mosquito repellents contain traces of Picaridin or DEET, which is harmful to the pregnant mother. It is essential to avoid mosquitoes by putting on fly screens or adorning to other effective ways of repelling mosquitoes at home.
Mercury causes brain deformities, hearing and vision impurities in a developing baby. As such, the mother must stay far away from it. There are fish like sharks, marlin, and swordfish which contain mercury. Pregnant women should not take these species of fish, and if necessary, eat once a fortnight. If you require a dental filling, opt for dental filling methods that don’t include mercury.
6. Arsenic-Treated Timber
Wood is often treated with elements like copper, chromium, or arsenic. This prevents the wood from rotting, forming fungi and termites. Arsenic is the root cause of certain cancers, diabetes miscarriage, as well as stillbirth cases. It is essential not to use arsenic-treated timber and wood and always wash hands properly if you have to handle it.
7. Nail Polish
Nail polish and certain cosmetic products contain a chemical- Formaldehyde – which causes skin irritation. It is essential to limit the exposure to this chemical to form skin issues in the pregnant mother.
Asbestos causes lung diseases like lung cancer and mesothelioma. The pregnant mother should avoid coming in contact with asbestos for her safety.
This chemical is found in plastics and can easily pass from the mother to her developing fetus in the womb. This chemical causes brain and behavioral issues in children
Mothballs consist of the chemical naphthalene. This chemical causes nausea, dizziness, and vomiting in people and also can cause serious health issues for children. Parents mustn’t use mothballs at all-around children under three years.
How to Avoid Exposure to Household Toxins
- Store chemicals and household toxins safely, out of the reach of children.
- Strictly follow the instructions of the packaging carefully- be t regarding storage, use or discard.
- Find alternatives to household toxins.
- Wash hands regularly and adequately.
- Try to not renovate during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
- Keep the house well ventilated.
If exposure to any household toxin or chemical occurs, don’t panic. Consult the doctor, take precautions, enjoy a healthy pregnancy. And always keep in mind, it is long-term exposure to toxins and chemicals that cause harm to the baby. A one-off exposure to them is unlikely to bring any damage.
Also Read: Dehydration During Pregnancy