Exercise Isn't Always Best: When To Take It Easy During Pregnancy

Posted on: 10 August 2015


When you get pregnant, one of the first things you're likely to hear from your midwife or obstetrician is to keep your exercise routine up. In most cases, exercise is a good thing during pregnancy, but there are some cases where it isn't necessarily safe. Here are some of the most common reasons why your care provider might suggest that you either skip or minimize your exercise routine until your baby is born.

Concerns of Miscarriage

If you have a medical history of miscarriage, you're probably concerned about the risk that exercise can pose to your pregnancy. If this is a concern for you, talk with your healthcare provider about your pregnancy and the warning signs of miscarriage. If you've been seeing any spot bleeding or feeling abdominal pains, that's a warning sign that you may need to be more cautious about your workout routine. Your care provider may suggest that you skip the workout routines until you've reached the end of your first trimester, which is the period at highest risk of miscarriage.

High-Risk Placental Problems

If you have been diagnosed with a condition such as placenta previa, your care provider might suggest that you reduce your general activity level and skip any significant exercise. The risk of premature labor or serious bleeding is significant, and exercise can intensify the risk. Your obstetrician or midwife may provide you with a few options that are safe given your condition. Make sure that you clarify whether these restrictions are temporary or until you deliver.

Risk of Pre-Term Labor

If you've been showing labor signs before 37 weeks along, that's an indication of preterm labor. Your care providers may recommend bedrest or easy activity for several weeks. It is an important consideration, because the activity levels can increase your risk of labor. In some cases, you might be able to go back to routine activity levels after a couple of weeks, but in other cases, you'll have to go easy on the activities until your baby is born. Your doctor or midwife will tell you what's best and why.

Carrying Multiples

If you are carrying multiple babies, your risk factors increase significantly. As a result, your doctor may recommend that you adhere to strict activity levels until the babies are born. You may need to spend some time on bed rest as you near the end of the pregnancy, so make sure that you understand exactly what you can and cannot do. If you're put on bedrest, consider asking your care providers what kinds of exercises you can do in bed to help retain muscle tone.

Worries About Blood Pressure

Your care provider might advise against any kind of routine exercise plan if you have high blood pressure. Exercise can actually increase your blood pressure, which can cause serious concerns if it's already elevated. Talk to your care provider about what exercises are safe for your cardiovascular system, and make sure that you're not overdoing the activity. The goal is to strike a balance between the well-being of the pregnancy and your overall health.

If your care team has suggested that you take it easy during your pregnancy, you'll want to be sure that you understand the instructions clearly. Find out exactly how much activity is safe, and if you're considering something specific, ask about it before you do it. With the information presented here, you can better understand some of the conditions that can lead to discouragement of exercise during your pregnancy. If you have any concerns, talk with your obstetrician or midwife right away. Or you can visit a site like http://www.whallc.com to find a midwife. The support of your healthcare providers is essential to ensuring a healthy pregnancy.