Tell your doctor what kind of work you do and talk about when you should stop working. Many women stay on the job until their baby is born. You may have to make a few changes at work. Here are some things to think about:
When you sit for a long time, your muscles get stiff. Your back may hurt. The veins in your legs may swell. Move your head, feet, and shoulders once in a while if you sit a lot. Each hour, take a short walk, or stand up and shake your arms and legs.
Standing in place for too long can make your legs and back hurt. If you have to stand much, wear shoes with low heels. Also wear support panty hose. Try to put one foot up on a box or stool from time to time. Take breaks often.
If you lift heavy loads at work, ask your doctor if it's still safe. If lifting makes you feel dizzy or sick to your stomach, stop doing it. When you pick something up, don't bend over from the waist. Bend your knees and squat down. Keep your back straight. As your belly gets bigger, your balance changes. Be careful not to fall.
Some illnesses can harm your baby. If you work in a doctor's office or at a hospital, try not to get close to other people who are sick. Wash your hands often. One infection, toxoplasmosis, can be spread by changing cat litter. Try to get someone else to do it, or wear rubber gloves.
Avoid x-rays. If you have an accident, be sure to tell the doctor that you're pregnant before the x-ray is performed. You may have to wear a special apron. Let your dentist know about your pregnancy. The dentist may be able to put off taking x-rays until your baby is born.
You shouldn't work with lead when you're pregnant. It can harm your baby's brain. To be sure you're safe, find out if you work with any products that contain lead. And try to avoid renovating a home or stripping old furniture, which can increase the risk of lead exposure.
Chemicals can be dangerous for your baby while you're pregnant. You should make sure to stay away from
- spot removers, cleaning fluid, and some cleaning products
- turpentine and paint thinner
- insect sprays
- strong glues
- paints, particularly oil based or latex