With the advancement in medical sciences, pregnancy and labor have become a much easier experience for mothers. However, this was not the same for women in the olden times. Pregnant women were made to follow crazy and unusual practices, most of which are simply not acceptable today. It is the better understanding of the human body that has made it possible for mothers to have a safer journey in welcoming their bundles of happiness to this world. Let us look at some of the crazy practices that were prevalent back in the day.
1. Stay Clinched In
All women wore corsets in the olden times. There were no undergarments at the time so a corset was all any lady could wear under her outfits even during pregnancy or nursing the newly born baby. There were special pregnant body designs, which might have made them more comfortable. It remains unknown whether or not the would-be mommies loved this idea, as for most, this type of clothing was nothing more than a curse. Today, we know how seriously the corsets injure a woman’s body.
2. Smoking Cigarettes Was Considered A Suitable Option
For years, doctors recommended that pregnant women smoke cigarettes for two major reasons. First, it would keep the baby’s weight in check i.e. chances of obesity were trimmed down. Second, to keep the would-be mum’s bowel movements regular and smooth. On the contrary, nowadays we have strict warnings on the pack of cigarette itself, highlighting the adverse effects it can have on the health of pregnant women. It is simply catastrophic for children.
3. Chloroform Or Ether Instead Of Epidurals
Possible mothers were essentially knocked out with considerable amounts of chloroform or ether. They were the only option available before the epidurals became available. While using any one, chloroform or ether, the intention was to never render the mother completely unconscious. Both the mother and her baby had to be kept safe since excess quantity of either could prove to be fatal for both.
4. Look At Something Or Someone Beautiful
It was believed that focusing on something or someone attractive and pretty while waiting for their bundle of joy to pop out or/and while giving birth would guarantee a beautiful baby. That being said, there is no doubt that every mother would see their child as the most gorgeous baby on this planet. The practice of focusing on something or someone attractive is not backed by any scientific theory, but it is followed to date by most future mommies. Perhaps, it has something to do with getting positive and happy feelings while you look at something praiseworthy.
5. Drinking Is Fine
Doctors recommended drinking, especially red wine occasionally during pregnancy. Soon-to-be mommies could drink anything if it was not in excess. More recently, alcohol has been identified to create defects in the child which cannot be corrected. Physicians allow a few sips of red wine only, since it is good for the heart and blood. Of course, the little ball of joy is better off if the mother abstains.
6. Minimal Traveling
Mommies in the past were warned against the evils of traveling. They were made to believe that the bumpy roads on a car ride could have the same effect as climbing up onto a bucking bronco. They advised that the lady did not travel. If it were imperative that she did, she should choose to do so by trains. In the modern times, there is no such complication and one can travel anywhere and by any means of transportation smoothly.
7. Ignore Cravings Of All Kinds
It is important to maintain a good weight and healthy lifestyle during pregnancy. Every female body reacts differently to the generation of a new life and to the types of food consumed. A predefined workout regime must be followed. Thus, it is wise to not give into all sorts of cravings. Earlier this rule applied to women, but only to adhere to some kind of aesthetic ideals and not necessarily from the health point of view.
8. Avoid Sunlight At All Costs
Long exposure to the sun is harmful to everyone, especially children in the womb. Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet rays could prove injurious to the unborn baby. Women were made to believe that the mothers should not move out in the sun as it would “cook the baby”. Today, all the surgeons advise the soon-to-be mommy against sunbathing but stepping out wearing sunscreen is fine.
9. Skip Hanky Panky
For a long time, it was thought that expecting mothers should refrain from any kind of bedroom action. Dr. John Harvey Kellogg strongly opposed having intercourse during pregnancy. He ardently believed that “libidinous tendencies” could be inherited by the child. Today, doctors recommend some hanky panky to help induce labor when the child starts to push his way to the world.
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