The moment you see that two red lines, different emotions arise. It’s a mixture of happiness, excitement and of course, worries. You begin to become anxious about the last cups of sodas, wines and coffees you have recently taken in.

Pregnancy can be an overwhelming, thrilling and worrisome experience. The moment you have learned about your pregnancy, you become extra mindful about everything you do and what you take into your mouth. But can mindfulness affect the health of your unborn baby? CERTAINLY!

According to research, pregnant women who are mindful about their health as well as their baby’s health during pregnancy tend to produce healthier and fitter babies. Women who are less mindful about what they eat and what they do, tend to expose their babies to higher risk of suffering from birth defects and other undesirable consequences. So what are the things that you should be mindful about during pregnancy?

Alcohol Consumption
Consumption of large amount of alcohol imposes harm to you and your baby. Though the “safe amount” of alcohol consumption is still unknown, studies show that alcohol can cause physical and mental birth defects. Binge drinking can also cause damage to the baby’s nervous system and it can trigger the development of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS).

Caffeine
Over consumption of caffeine is not good for the body. Intake of over 150 milligrams of caffeine increases a pregnant woman’s risk for miscarriage. Make sure to cut down your consumption of alcohol to give your baby the best possible health. Take note that caffeine does not just refer to coffee. Caffeine also includes green tea, cola, softdrinks and black tea. You can have chocolates but only in moderate amount.

Medications
There are certain medications which you should avoid. Make sure to ask your doctor about the OTC and prescription drugs which are safe and unsafe to use. Some medications impose negative impacts to the health of babies. The use of recreational drugs can actually trigger premature birth, learning and behavioural problems, poor growth and birth defects. If you have used any of drugs during your pregnancy, make sure to consult your doctor about it.

Cigarette Smoking
In whatever circumstances, cigarette smoking is never beneficial to the body. By smoking, you also allow your unborn baby to smoke. You in fact encourage him or her to obtain carbon monoxide and nicotine which are very harmful to the body. In effect, your baby is at a greater risk for low birth weight, premature birth, stillbirth, asthma and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners
Make sure to avoid artificial sweeteners. According to research, excessive consumption of artificial sweeteners can trigger the development of serious health conditions such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, bladder cancer and birth defects.

Exercise
Some low-impact exercises are beneficial for a pregnant woman’s body. However, high impact exercises such as bouncing, scuba diving, leaping, jarring, sit-ups, heavy lifting and weight training should be avoided. These exercises can exert too much pressure on the structures found within the uterus which can cause bleeding or premature labour. Instead of engaging in these exercises, perhaps you can do some yoga, swimming, walking and water aerobics.

Bug Spray and Household Chemicals
Avoidance from these chemicals is strongly recommended as they impose drastic impacts to the health of the babies. Frequent exposure to these chemicals can cause birth defects, premature delivery and miscarriage.

Lead
Make sure to avoid materials which contain lead. According to research, exposure to lead can cause premature delivery, developmental and learning delays, low birth weight and miscarriage.

In one study, it was found out that mindfulness can actually help in fighting off stress and anxiety. Also, it is proven to be effective in improving the overall health being of the baby as well as the mother. Women who have undergone mindfulness training during the early stages of their pregnancy earned greater satisfaction and higher self-esteem which results to less emotional distress. This creates positive impact on their delivery and to the health of newborns.

Pregnancy should not really be a worrisome journey. Too much worry and anxiety can just cause stress which can affect your baby’s health if left uncontrolled. Make your pregnancy an enjoyable and exciting experience and follow your doctor’s advices. By so doing, you get a higher probability of having a healthier and stronger baby.

Find FREE expert information about many aspects of pregnancy, including special health conditions, on the blog of Merrion Fetal Health. This is a medically led ultrasound clinic, in Dublin, where you can get pregnancy scans supported by a consultant led team.