Jacuzzi Baths pregnancy
Sitting in a hot tub when pregnant, or taking a long hot bath sounds like a relaxing and wonderful way to get relief from all your pregnancy-related aches and pains. But you might want to resist the temptation. One of these options is safe, and one is not. So what’s safe during pregnancy – a bubbling hot tub, or a hot bath?
If you guessed – hot bath, you’re right. Taking a hot bath, as long as the water is comfortable and not scalding hot, is perfectly safe when you’re pregnant.
On the other hand, hot tubs and pregnancy do not go together. It is a dangerous mix, and you should avoid it when pregnant. Hot tubs, especially in the first trimester, can increase your risk of complications, such as miscarriage and birth defects.
The Danger of Hot Tubs in Pregnancy
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the American Pregnancy Association, the March of Dimes, and other health organizations warn pregnant women to stay away from hot tubs in all trimesters of pregnancy. Hot tubs can potentially cause complications for your unborn child.
Hot tubs increase your body temperature and cause you to overheat. When you’re pregnant, a high body temperature can cause your blood pressure to fall – a condition called hyperthermia. Because you have twice the amount of blood in your body during pregnancy, lowered blood pressure can decrease the amount of oxygen and nutrition that your unborn baby receives. Not getting enough oxygen or nutrient can cause problems for the baby in the womb.
Many hot tubs are programmed to automatically set the water temperature to 104 degrees Fahrenheit; so sitting in a hot tub for 10 to 20 minutes can increase your body temperature to 102 degrees easily. Because your body is immersed in the hot water, you don’t release heat by sweating. You overheat easily, and this is dangerous when you’re pregnant.
- Research studies have shown that there’s a higher risk of birth defects in pregnant women who have an increased body temperature, especially in the first trimester.
- There is also evidence that hot tubs may also increase a woman’s risk for miscarriage.
For all these pregnancy risks, ACOG recommends that you do not allow your core temperature to get above 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit. To keep your unborn baby safe and healthy, you should stay away from hot tubs, jacuzzis, and saunas while pregnant.
Hot Baths in Pregnancy are a Safer Alternative
If you love soaking in hot water, why not take a hot bath instead? Hot baths in pregnancy are perfectly safe, as long as the water temperature isn’t too hot. Make sure the water is comfortable before you get in.
Hot baths are safer, because water cools down over time. The water doesn’t maintain a constant hot temperature – like in a hot tub. In addition, in a hot bath, your body is not fully submerged, so your body temperature increases more slowly.