Health and Safety
Saunas, Hot Tubs, and Hot Baths
Hot tubs and saunas can be relaxing and soothing, but it is important not to increase your inner body temperature. This overheating can increase your developing baby’s body temperature. It is important for your baby not to become overheated. Being overheated can affect your baby’s healthy development.
If you choose to use a hot tub or sauna:
- Lower the temperature to below 38.9°C.
- Limit your time in the hot tub or sauna to 10 minutes, or less if you feel uncomfortable.
- Have another adult with you.
- Get out right away if you feel dizzy, faint, have rapid pulse, irregular heartbeat, stomach pain, or tingling in feet and hands.
For more information, see the HealthLink BC file Hot Tubs: Health and Safety Tips.
If you have contact with your cat’s feces (poop), you can get a parasite that can cause a serious infection, called toxoplasmosis, in your unborn baby. This can result in miscarriage or birth defects. The disease is often mild or without symptoms and can be mistaken for the flu.
How can I practice safety with my cat?
- Have someone else empty the cat litter box, or wear gloves and wash your hands well.
- Wear gloves and avoid direct contact with garden soil that may have cat feces in it.
- You should wash your hands well with soap and water after handling your pets.
For more information, see the HealthLink BC file Toxoplasmosis during Pregnancy.
If you get your drinking water from a private well or other non-regulated source such as a creek or lake, get the water tested by a laboratory to ensure the drinking water is safe. Harmful bacteria and chemicals can be found in untreated water. For example, high levels of nitrates have been found in wells throughout the province. High levels of nitrates can be dangerous for babies. Nitrates interfere with the ability of the blood to carry oxygen. In severe cases, this can cause death.
For more information about getting your well water tested, see the HealthLink BC file Should I Get My Well Water Tested?. For more information about the dangers of nitrates in well water, see the HealthLink BC file Nitrate Contamination in Well Water.
If you get your drinking water from a creek, river, or lake, you should also boil it before drinking it. Boiling kills bacteria but does not remove chemicals.