Women go through lots of changes during pregnancy. The expanding waistline, vaginal discharge, hot flashes, dry skin, morning sickness, and many others can cause extreme discomfort. Practicing proper hygiene not only helps pregnant women feel more comfortable and refreshed but also helps prevent infection.
Read on to learn some good hygiene practices during pregnancy.
Why is it important to keep attention on Hygiene Practices During Pregnancy
Personal hygiene definition involves maintaining the cleanliness of one’s body and clothing to preserve overall health and well-being. Basic hygiene practices, as we know it, include brushing the teeth, taking a shower, and putting on clean clothes. They refer to the things we do to clean and take care of our bodies. Germs and bacteria are everywhere – in our home, in our car, in our favorite restaurant, in the place we work, and anywhere else. Without cleaning our bodies regularly, germs and dirt can accumulate and expose us to various health problems, from skin allergies to respiratory disorders and infections. Proper hygiene is the routine taught to us in grade school. It’s the most basic thing for sure.
As an expectant mother, you need to be very careful about every aspect of your life. You need to be in your best physical and mental health. You should aim to develop a healthier lifestyle, proper diet, and good sleeping habits.
Improper hygiene can harm your health and the health of your baby. The developing fetus inside your womb is at its most vulnerable stage ever. Even small amounts of germs or bacteria that enter the placenta can put your baby at risk of infections. Meanwhile, severe exposure to toxins can lead to certain malformations in the baby.
Pay Attention to Your Environment
Proper hygiene involves paying attention to your environment. There is no escaping from disease-causing germs, viruses, and bacteria. They lurk in various surfaces, from your bed to your toothbrush holder, your kitchen sponge, the doorknob, the grocery cart handle, and so on. They also thrive on your phone screen and your keyboard.
In addition to frequent hand-washing, make it a habit to clean items and surfaces before using or touching them. Wherever you go, always bring medical disinfectant wipes by SONO that can get rid of germs right away and reduce your risk of infections. SONO wipes are convenient for quick cleaning and sanitizing objects.
Do not underestimate your Dental Health
Dental health is an important aspect of your overall health, which is also an important part of your pregnancy.
Being pregnant increases your risk of oral health problems like pregnancy gingivitis. There are several reasons for this.
- One is the increase in the levels of hormones progesterone and estrogen.
- Two, pregnancy can cause changes in your eating habits. You may crave for sugary treats and other food that can affect your dental health.
- Lastly, you may brush and floss your teeth less often than you did before pregnancy as these can cause nausea in some pregnant women. Brushing swollen gums (which is commonly experienced by expectant mothers) makes practicing dental hygiene more challenging.
How do you avoid problems like gingivitis and swollen gums, and take care of your teeth during pregnancy?
- See your dentist early on during your pregnancy to detect and treat oral health problems early.
- Have regular teeth cleaning to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
- Brush your teeth twice a day. If you feel nauseous when doing so, use antacids. Alternately, you can rinse your mouth with 1 tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in water.
- Apply inflammatory cream or gel on your gums if you suffer from sore gums.
- Don’t skip your biannual dental checkups.
- Eat healthy foods and try to limit your intake of sweets.
Personal Hygiene Advice
Follow these personal hygiene tips and advice to ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy:
- Wash your hands regularly, especially after visiting the washroom. Apply hand sanitizer after.
- Pack a toiletry bag or kit in your bag. Include disinfecting wipes, antibacterial soap, and clean cloth or towel.
- Take baths regularly. Taking baths during pregnancy also gives you relief from hot flashes.
- Keep your pubic region clean and hair-free to prevent genital infections that can potentially harm your baby. Use a feminine wash that’s suitable for pregnant women, or plain and unperfumed soaps that have low pH levels.
Skin and Hair Care
With massive hormonal changes taking place the whole time, pregnancy brings all sorts of unexpected issues and they include hair and skin problems. While some women may have thicker and bouncier hair, others suffer from significant hair fall. Consider the following skin and hair care tips during pregnancy:
- Maintain hygiene practices like shampooing your hair regularly. Incorporate hair massage in your routine. For your skin, use soap that has a high moisturizer content. Apply lotion and moisturizer after every bath.
- As much as possible, avoid undergoing hair and skin treatments that involve the use of harmful chemicals. Always practice natural hair and skincare during pregnancy.
- Cleanse your skin well. Do not sleep with makeup on.
- Stay out of the sun or wear sunglasses and a broad-brimmed hat when going out.
One of the early signs of pregnancy is enlarged breasts. That’s your body preparing for the day you nurse your baby. Here are some essential care tips for your breasts:
- Use bra that fits your pregnant breasts to prevent pressing, rubbing, or binding that could cause you a lot of discomforts.
- Change bra pads regularly as breasts can get damp and itchy easily during pregnancy.
- Get your breasts and nipples checked by your OB to see if you have issues like inverted nipples so you can ask advice on how to deal with them.
- Prepare your nipples for nursing and reduce the risk of having sore or cracked nipples by applying lotion. Look for the best nipple cream.
- If you experience colostrum leakage, wear absorbent pads in your bra replace them regularly to avoid infection or skin irritation.
Proper hygiene is important at any point in a woman’s life, especially during pregnancy. Practicing good hygiene does not only keep you feeling fresh and comfortable. It also protects you and your baby against infections and diseases. Just as you pay attention to your diet and overall physical health, you must also focus on maintaining the cleanliness of your body. Having poor hygiene can expose you and your little one to numerous bacteria and microbes since your immune system is lowered slightly during pregnancy. Aside from routine cleaning like bathing, showering, changing clothes, and dental care, good hygiene practices also include dental care, skin and hair care, and breast care. Keep in mind these hygiene tips and advice have a healthy pregnancy.