Pregnancy Do's and Don'ts



Once you get pregnant, many friends and relatives will rush to give you advice, good-naturedly of course (whether you ask for it or not!): do this, don’t do that, eat this, don’t eat that. It is difficult to follow everything.

So let’s make it a little easier for you. Here are some definite “Pregnancy Do’s” (If you want to read about Pregnancy Don’ts, click here)


Follow-up with the doctor regularly

See your doctor at regular intervals, and when your doctor asks you to come. Prenatal care can help you and your baby stay healthy and provide an opportunity to detect potential problems, if any, early on.

Remember to take folic acid
You need to continue taking folic acid all throughout the pregnancy. Consuming the required amount of folic acid can help prevent or lower the risk of birth defects such as neural tube defects.

Opt for wide range of healthy food
Opt for a wide range of fruits, vegetables, whole grain, food rich in calcium, along with a variety of completely cooked seafood and lean food. 1 Make sure you are getting all important nutrients such as iron and folic acid. Consuming sufficient iron can help prevent anaemia.

Get enough fluids
Make sure you drink extra fluids, especially water.

Be physically active
Be active during pregnancy as it can help prevent back pain and other discomforts, enhance mood and level of energy, maintain weight and help sleep better. Exercises are not only good for you but also for your baby.

Gain healthy weight
Weight gain during pregnancy should be adequate and healthy. Gaining excessive weight during pregnancy can increase the risk of complications during pregnancy. Consult your doctor about how much weight gain would be considered appropriate for you during your pregnancy.

Be particular about hygiene
Wash hands thoroughly, especially after using the bathroom and working with raw meat.

Sleep well
Aim to sleep for 7 to 9 hours every night.

Limit your stress
Control the stress in your life and set limits. Don’t be hesitant to say “no” to requests for your time and energy. Be okay asking help from the others.

  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women’s Health. Do’s and Don’ts. Cited 2016 May 10. Available from:
  2. Mayo Clinic Staff. Pregnancy and exercise: Baby, let's move! Cited 2016 May 10. Available from:


I’m sure you would have noticed that the moment you told people you were pregnant, everyone seemed to have a word of advice for you – from what you should eat and drink to how you should change your routine, to what you should avoid.

We understand that it’s often difficult to keep track of all this. So here’s a list of some important “Pregnancy Don’ts”. (If you want to read about “Pregnancy Do’s, click here)

Do not smoke
Avoid smoking or quit smoking during pregnancy. If you need to, ask your doctor for help to stop that habit. Nicotine and other cancer-causing substances from the cigarette can pass from you to your baby. Smoking may also restrict the amount of nourishment that your baby gets and increases the chances of miscarriage, early birth and infant death.

Avoid exposure to toxic substances
Try avoiding contact with toxic substances and chemicals, such as lead, mercury, cleaning solvents, some insecticides, and most paints.

Prevent foodborne illness
Avoid foodborne illness by correctly handling, cleaning and cooking food. Also make sure that food is eaten and stored properly.

Don’t drink alcohol.
No amount of alcohol is considered safe during pregnancy. Drinking daily or drinking a large amount of alcohol can impact the baby adversely.

Do not clean cat litter boxes
Cleaning the cat’s litter box can increase the risk of an infection called “toxoplasmosis” which can cause a lot of harm to your baby.

Avoid fish with high mercury content
Don’t eat swordfish, king mackerel, shark, and tilefish, as they have high mercury content.

Do not take bath with very hot water
Avoid taking a bath with very hot water, and avoid hot saunas, as the high temperature can harm your baby and you might get faint.

Avoid scented feminine hygiene products
Pregnant women should not use sprays, sanitary napkins, and bubble bath products with a strong fragrance. These products can irritate the vaginal area, and can raise the chances of getting a urinary tract infection or yeast infection.

Avoid x-rays
Avoid undergoing x-rays during pregnancy. If you have to, please tell your doctor so he/she can take extra care.

  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women’s Health. Do’s and Don’ts. Cited 2016 May 10. Available from: