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WHAT TO AVOID IF PREGNANT

Avoid smoking, alcohol, and any form of medicine unless confirmcd as safe by your doctor, throughout pregnancy, but especially in the first three months when the baby's organs are forming.

Smoking

This deprived the baby of oxygen. Babies of mothers who smoke are more likely to be premature and have a low birthweight. Smoking also increases the chances of having a miscarriage, a stillbirth, a malformed baby, or a baby that dies after birth. The more you smoke, the greater the risk, so stop smoking completely. If you really can't give up, switch to a low-tar brand, ration the cigarette's you smoke, donít inhale, and stub out your cigarette when youíve smoked half of it Doctors believe that passive smoking could be a factor in causing cot death, so avoid smoky atmospheres when pregnant. Protect your baby from inhaling other peopleís cigarette smoke

Alcohol

Drinking heavily in pregnancy can seriousely affect the developing baby. No-one knows what a 'safe' level of drinking is. so itís best not to dnnk at all while pregnant. At any rare, drink no more than two units of alcohol once or twice a week (a unit of alcohol is equivalent to a glass of wane or half a pint of lager). Avoid spirits.

Medication

Many drugs can have harmful or unknown effects on the baby, so avoid taking medication in pregnancy, unless it is prescribed by a doctor who knows you are pregnant. This includes many of the remedies you would normally take for minor complaints, such as aspirin. It you need medication to control a condition such as diabetes, your doctor may have to alter your dose.

Other risks

Cats and dogsí faeces, and raw or undercooked meat, may contain a parasite called toxoplasma, which can seriously harm the unborn baby. Wash your hands after handling raw meat, and donít eat undercooked meat. Avoid emptying cat litter trass (if you must, wear gloves and then wash your hands). Wear gloves tor gardening. Wash all fruit and vegetables well before eating to remove any soil.
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