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Take care to protect your developing fetus from dangerous substances during your pregnancy:
Nail polish, artificial nails, hair dyes, and hair permanents all contain strong chemicals. There is not very much research about the use of these products during pregnancy. It is always a good idea to reduce your exposure to these chemicals and be sure the room is well ventilated. Go to the website https://mothertobaby.org for more information about the effects that chemicals can have on a fetus.
A single diagnostic X-ray , such as a dental X-ray, does not harm your fetus.footnote 3 But it's still a good idea to avoid unnecessary X-rays. If an X-ray is necessary, be sure to tell the technician that you are pregnant. Many X-rays can be delayed until after pregnancy. If X-rays are needed, they can be done with a lead apron that shields your belly.
If you travel by plane frequently on business or as an airline pilot, flight attendant, air marshal, or courier, it is possible for you to exceed the cosmic radiation limit considered safe during pregnancy (1 millisievert, or mSv). Although the occasional flight doesn't pose a risk, frequent low-altitude domestic flights or several high-altitude international flights may increase your radiation exposure.footnote 4
The radiation from electrical appliances such as televisions, computers, or electric blankets (electromagnetic radiation) has not been shown to cause birth defects. Electric blankets or water bed heaters can be used to warm the bed, but it is a good idea to turn them off when you get into bed so that you don't become overheated.
CitationsShannon MW (2007). Lead. In MW Shannon et al., eds., Haddad and Winchester's Clinical Management of Poisoning and Drug Overdose, 4th ed., pp. 1129–1146. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier.U.S. Food and Drug Administration and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (2017). Eating fish: What pregnant women and parents should know. U.S. Food and Drug Administration and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. www.fda.gov/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/Metals/ucm393070.htm. Accessed April 3, 2017.Cunningham FG, et al. (2010). General considerations and maternal evaluation. In Williams Obstetrics, 23rd ed., pp. 912–925. New York: McGraw-Hill.American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (2009). Air travel during pregnancy. ACOG Committee Opinion No. 443. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 114(4): 954–955.
Adaptation Date: 5/6/2021
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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