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It’s common to be concerned that your customary activities might cause harm to your growing baby.  We have compiled this list to help sort out safe activities during pregnancy.  If you don’t see your concern or question listed below call our office or ask the provider at your next office visit.  Women with medical complexities or pregnancy complications may have additional restrictions.


These are generally considered safe, for women with uncomplicated pregnancies:

  • Manicure, pedicure, facial, bikini wax, mud bath, salt scrub, seaweed wrap, massage (be aware that some skin types become more sensitive in pregnancy)
  • Having your teeth cleaned, whitened, filled, crown applied, root canal
  • Having your hair permed/relaxed or colored (with good ventilation)
  • Taking a warm bath (not Hot!)
  • Swimming in a chlorinated pool, lake, or ocean (watch out for big waves!)
  • Carrying your toddler
  • Benzoyl peroxide applications for acne
  • Using soothing skin balms like Icy-Hot or Vicks Vapor Rub
  • Acupuncture, Chiropractic, and Physical Therapy services—but make sure your clinician is aware of your pregnancy
  • Working on a computer or with cell phones
  • Raising your arms above your head
  • Applying topical self-tanning lotions and sunscreen
  • Applying topical essential oils (but not ingesting them)
  • Sexual activity (if you are not at risk for placental bleeding)
  • Traveling through airport security, body scanners, metal detectors
  • Wearing a seat belt … please do!

Safe, with Reasonable Accommodations

These are generally considered safe, with reasonable accommodations:

  • Moving furniture (depends on the weight and size)
  • Having your home exterminated, walls painted, hardwood floors refinished (with good ventilation)
  • Using Mosquito sprays or DEET use (small amounts on exposed skin or clothing only)

Safe, BEFORE 20 Weeks of Pregnancy

These are generally considered safe, BEFORE 20 weeks of pregnancy:

  • Sleeping on your back or stomach
  • Sit ups and abdominal crunches
  • Breastfeeding


These activities should be considered UNSAFE during your pregnancy, or there is such limited safety information available that the activity cannot be recommended at this time:

  • Drinking alcohol or using illegal drugs
  • Participating in sports or activities that expose you to a risk of being struck in the abdomen
  • Ice skating, rollerblading, water skiing, snow skiing, horse riding, or participating in activities that expose you to a risk of falling
  • X-rays, CT scans, MRI, unless approved by your physician
  • Deep heating ultrasound
  • Using a hot tub, sauna, steam room, Hot Yoga, or very hot bath soak
  • Using a tanning bed
  • Laser hair removal with the use of associated topical anesthetics
  • Cleaning out your cat’s litter box (wear gloves if absolutely necessary)
  • Contact with rodents and their excrements, including guinea pigs and hamsters
  • Blood donation
  • Getting a tattoo
  • Using acne medicine containing retinoic acid or derivatives
  • Firearms training, use, or exposure (lead and noise toxicity)
  • Scuba diving
  • Air Travel in non-pressurized (non-commercial) aircraft
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