Have you ever wondered, “Can I take an ice bath while pregnant?” Let’s dive into this chilly topic.
Ice baths also known as cold water immersion are popular among athletes for recovery. Many people swear that the cooler temperatures help them feel better faster. But what does this mean for pregnant women?
This article will help you understand this better. If there is any, we’ll look at the benefits and precautions to also consider, and what experts are saying about this.
Can you take an ice bath while pregnant?
It is generally safe for pregnant women to rather take cold water baths or cool showers. But exposure to very cold temperature such as those found in ice baths below 15 degrees or 59 farenheight should be avoided.
This is basically because such temperatures are likely to cause vasoconstriction, which means reduced blood flow that leads to discomfort.
If you’re now looking to try ice baths, it’s recommended that you gradually adapt by starting with shorter durations and warmer water temperatures for a much safe and comfortable experience.
Is cold exposure good for pregnancy?
Feeling cold can give you that balance of an increased energy and alertness. This usually happen because our bodies release ‘get up to go’ chemicals when exposed to cold.
However, these benefits have not been entirely studied in pregnant women.
During pregnancy, higher temperatures could heighten the risk of preterm birth. This insinuates that pregnant mothers should be cautious when it comes to extreme temperatures, both hot and cold.
So even though cold exposure may be good for some people, it’s not advisable to get exposed to them while pregnant.
Should a pregnant woman bath hot or cold water?
A pregnant woman can bathe in both hot and cold water, but it’s crucial to pay attention to the water’s temperature. Very high or very low temperatures could potentially have risks.
The ideal water temperature for pregnant women is close to body temperature because too cold and too hot water can cause heart rate to increase and even reduce blood flow to the baby, causing fetal distress.
Cold baths or showers can manage hot flashes and swollen feet. But the risk of vasoconstriction makes it important to get rid of icy water.
Therefore, it is recommended for pregnant women to bath in warm water rather than extreme hot or cold waters.
Effect of cold bath during pregnancy
Taking cold water(not icy) baths is generally considered safe and can even have some benefits.
- One benefit is the improvement of blood circulation. This can help relieve muscle pain and reduce swelling, which are two common symptoms during pregnancy.
- Cold water baths could also help ease morning sickness and nausea -making it potentially beneficial particularly during the first trimester when these symptoms are often at their worst.
- In addition to these physical benefits, bathing in cold water may also have some positive effects on your mood and sleep. During the second and third trimesters, pregnant women usually have mood swings and restless nights. It has been suggested that a cold bath can promote better sleep and boost moods.
- Moreover, cold baths might stimulate the immune system and decrease inflammation, helping you to handle fatigue.
Even though cold water baths have benefits, it’s important to have them safely. Note that the water shouldn’t be too cold or iced as ice showers or baths is rather unsafe in pregnancy.
What not to bathe in when pregnant?
Taking care of yourself and the baby especially is very important in pregnancy, and this includes when taking a bath.
But don’t worry; it’s not too difficult to understand what you should avoid when you go by these caveats:
- Watch the temperature of your bathwater. Generally it shouldn’t be hotter than 100 degrees. Very hot waters can cause burns and other problems to you and the baby.
- Keep an eye on the clock. You don’t have to last more than 10 minutes in the shower. Spending too much time in warm water can make your body too hot which isn’t safe for your baby. So remember to check the temperature before you hop in.
- Don’t forget to read the ingredients or chemical makeup of your bath products. Some products have harsh chemicals that might harm you or the baby. So always go for organic products that eliminates the harsh chemicals.
- Check with your dermatologist or doctor first anytime you need to add salts such as Epsom salts in bathwater. These can help soothe aches and reduce swelling but always ask your doctor before using.
No, swimming in cold water should generally not cause a miscarriage. But pregnant women who indulge in regular ice baths can have hypothermia which can cause some pregnancy complications.
It is not advisable for breastfeeding moms to cold plunge because exposures to extreme temperatures can affect blood circulation, make you uncomfortable and even impact milk production.
This is because pregnancy increases blood volume, which triggers the feeling of thirst usually, satisfied by cold water. Your body’s demand for water for more amniotic fluid to protect the baby, better circulation of nutrients and elimination of wastes also makes you thirst for water and you naturally would intend to satisfy this with ice water.
Cold or cool water is good for pregnant women, but bathing in extreme cold temperatures as with ice bath is unsafe and simply not the best.
You can still derive the benefits you want in ice baths in cool or cold water. Also, make sure you listen to your body anytime you consider taking cold showers. If you have concerns or questions, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor