Pregnancy in the heat of summer

Tips for being pregnant in the heat of summer

Being pregnant can be uncomfortable. You’re carrying around extra weight, your feet swell up, and you’re getting kicked in the bladder. But being in the third trimester during the heat of summer? Now that’s torture. Here are some tips to keep you and your baby healthy, and hopefully a little more comfortable, while enjoying the summertime.

  1. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. All pregnant women, no matter the season, need to drink 64 oz. of water each day to stay hydrated. It’s even more important if you’re out in the sun and sweating, so you’ll need to drink more to replenish those fluids. Add lemon, strawberries or mint to freshen up the taste. Limit caffeinated drinks to no more than 8 oz. per day. Staying hydrated throughout pregnancy will keep your body running properly and may increase your milk supply once your little one arrives.
  2. Wear comfortable shoes and prop up your feet. Unfortunately, the heat can only add to any swelling you may already be experiencing. Prop up your feet any chance you get, but when you’re on your feet, forego the heels and wear something more comfortable and practical.
  3. Wear sun protection. Being pregnant is uncomfortable enough. Don’t add a sunburn to the mix.
  4. Stay cool. It’s important to not overheat. If you’re outside, choose the shade whenever possible, carry an umbrella, and keep a bottle of ice cold water with you.
  5. Eat on a regular schedule. Summertime, especially vacations, can throw off our regular schedules. Eat regular meals and try recipes with plenty of healthy fruits and vegetables.
  6. Before you take vacation or go on that baby-moon, talk to your physician or midwife.
    1. They will be able to tell you if it’s safe for you to travel and any precautions you may need to take.
    2. It may also be important to have a copy of your latest medical records just in case you go into labor early or another health need arises. Your medical records will allow the health care team to more promptly and accurately care for you and your baby.
    3. If you’re planning to fly, keep in mind most domestic airlines won’t allow you to travel during the last month of your pregnancy. For more tips on traveling during pregnancy, visit: https://www.acog.org/-/media/For-Patients/faq055.pdf)
  7. Protect yourself from mosquitos. if you are going to be someplace where there are mosquitos, try to avoid being out at feeding time (dawn and dusk) and DO use mosquito repellent. DEET is safe in pregnancy, and lemon eucalyptus oil is effective if you are worried, despite that reassurance. (Some mosquitos, primarily outside of the U.S., may carry diseases like the Zika virus, which can cause birth defects.)
  8. Enjoy yourself and take time to relax. Amid a busy summer and preparing for your new arrival, take time for yourself. Relax and enjoy this season.

Looking for an OB/GYN? Call UofL Physicians – OB/GYN & Women’s Health at 502-588-4400.

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About Jennifer Hamm, M.D.

Dr. Jennifer Hamm is an obstetrician and gynecologist with UofL Physicians – OB/GYN & Women’s Health. She is division chief of General Obstetrics and Gynecology in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health at UofL School of Medicine, where she is also associate professor. She delivers at UofL Hospital’s Center for Women and Infants.

All posts by Jennifer Hamm, M.D.