Worried if certain harmless stuff like a fruit or an eclipse might have any influence over your unborn baby?
Just say the word ‘pregnant’ and you will have women of all ages swooping down on you with words of advice. Every statement they utter will be supported by the deadly disclaimer, “I speak from experience”, and so you will be in dilemma – to believe them or not?
While some of them have been ruled out completely, there are still some myths that have been doing the rounds for so many decades that we have simply come to accept these as true without attempting to discover the real truth behind them. Here we present you the top 23 widely-believed pregnancy myths and the real truth:
Myth 1: Belly Position Determines Baby’s Gender:
Chances are that any prediction your aunty or mother-in-law or any neighbourhood woman does will have a fifty percent possibility of coming true. Think about it. It has nothing to do with belly positions. Each woman carries her
Myth 2: Certain Types of Foods Will Affect the Baby’s Complexion:
This one is completely baseless. Your near and dear women try to push you into drinking too much coconut water with the sound advice that it will make you have a fair baby. Some old timers even go so far as to tell you to stay off iron supplements because they make your baby’s skin dark. First of all, food has nothing to do with complexion. Secondly, staying off iron supplements may lead to serious consequences both for the mother and the baby. Hence this is one myth you should completely disregard.
Myth 3: You Should Eat For Two:
No matter what anyone says, you do NOT need to eat for two. Yes, pregnancy does increase your daily caloric requirement, but only by 300 calories. This means just a single chapatti with ghee, or two servings of fruit, or two servings of salad extra. Not the kind of food bandwagon that is suggested to you just because you have another life growing within you.
Myth 4: Eating Spicy Foods Will Lead to Labor Induction:
No way. Eating spicy will only lead to heartburn and gases. Not labor induction as is told to you time and again. But to reduce discomfort from gas trouble, which may be even painful for a pregnant woman in delicate health, it is advisable to consume spicy stuff in moderate quantity.
Myth 5: More Heartburn Means More Hair on Baby’s Scalp!
The amount of hair on a newborn baby depends a lot on the genetic make-up of the child and not based on how much heartburn the mother suffers during pregnancy. The growing weight of the foetus, often leads to pushing the digestive apparatus upwards towards the cardiac sphincter, leading to acid formation. This is the reason for hyperacidity and not hair. Suffice it to say, many a women with terrific heartburns have given birth to hairless babies, and many women with nay heartburn have had children with heavy hairs on their heads.
Myth 6: No Sex during Pregnancy:
While most doctors may advise you to stay off sex during the first three months, they all agree that during the second and third trimesters it is pretty much safe. Also, many women experience an increase in sexual desire due to an increase in the hormone levels. Fetuses are protected by layers of tissues, and cannot be harmed by intercourse. So unless your practitioner has expressly told you to abstain from sex, please continue getting intimate with your partner.
Myth 7: Eclipses Can Cause Genetic Defects:
Cleft lips and palates are genetic anomalies and are caused due to certain genetic factors predisposing to it. They are more often seen in intermarriages. Under no circumstances are they related to eclipses either of the sun or the moon.
Myth 8: Spinal Anesthesia Causes Backaches:
While spinal anesthesia may contribute somewhat to backaches, they are primarily caused by the shifted center of gravity in pregnant women. All those weight an expectant mother carries causes the spine to curve excessively leading to awkward positioning and backache. Even women who deliver naturally suffer from debilitating backaches, and the only way to prevent it is by doing spine-strengthening exercises both during and after pregnancy.
Myth 9: Ghee for Easy Labor And Delivery:
Well-meaning aunties will tell you to consume ghee in copious amounts, supposedly because ghee lubricates the birth canal, therefore facilitating easy labor and delivery. This particular myth has no base whatsoever and having ghee in high quantity will only make you put on excessive amount of weight! The severity and duration of labor differs with every woman, and consuming ghee will not ease it in anyway. Castor oil is often prescribed by practitioners if labor is delayed, to bring on the contractions, but ghee is just an old wives’ tale.
Myth 10: Papaya Causes Abortion:
The basis behind this myth is that unripe or even semi-ripen papaya contains latex that can activate uterine contractions. However, to cause miscarriage, a woman would have to consume papayas in humongous quantity. Miscarriages often happen because of anomalies in a foetus, making it unviable for continuing. You can easily enjoy your favorite fruits and foods to your heart’s content, but before that always confirm your diet with your doctor.
Myth 11: Determining The Sex Of The Baby, According To The Sexual Position:
Many women may have heard of the ‘idea’ that the sex of the baby can be determined by the sexual position adopted. Well, the truth is, you can‘t determine the baby’s gender by sexual positions, as they have no impact on determining the sex of your baby.