You already know you should eat healthy, exercise and keep your prenatal care appointments, but when it comes to other decisions you might have misconceptions about your pregnancy health.
Here are seven of the most common mistakes pregnant women make and easy ways to fix them.
1. Overlooking the Zika virus
As of August 25th, there have been 624 reported cases of pregnant women in the U.S. with lab evidence of the Zika virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Although women have been advised to avoid travel where Zika has been circulating, women who live in those areas or decide to travel anyway might not use insect repellant or use the wrong type of insect repellant to prevent mosquito bites, said Dr. Alyssa Dweck, a board-certified OB/GYN in Mt. Kisco, N.Y. and an assistant clinical professor at the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.
Dweck recommends pregnant women and those planning to become pregnant use insect repellant with DEET sprayed on their clothing, not directly on their skin. If your sexual partner has traveled to an area with Zika, you should also use condoms to prevent the spread of the virus.
2. Treating pregnancy like a condition
The greatest mistake Ive seen women in pregnancy make is this idea that somehow its a much different state than the rest of their lives and that they have to change everything that they do, said Dr. Jennifer Lang, a board-certified OB/GYN in Los Angeles and author of, The Whole 9 Months: A Week-By-Week Pregnancy Nutrition Guide with Recipes for a Healthy Start.
Remember that pregnancy is natural and normal and although you might have to avoid certain foods like sushi, pregnancy shouldnt be a free pass to overindulge on foods you crave.
If its not a great idea to do when youre not pregnant, its not a great idea to do in pregnancy, she said.