UNICEF has declared that pollution can affect babies even before birth, impacting their growth in the womb. In fact, risk of premature birth or low-birth weight are heightened due to air pollution. Mothers who are exposed to toxic air are likely to deliver babies with high chances of long term cognitive and physical damage. Immunological diseases like asthma are also quite common.
A WHO survey has warned that the air quality in Delhi is the worst among the 1,650 major cities across the globe. So, if you are residing in the National Capital Region, adopt these steps for a risk-free pregnancy.
1. Check the Air Quality Index
Even if you are able to breathe properly or the air looks clean, it could be contaminated. Get hold of an air quality monitor to check the pollution and stay away from areas that are hazardous. A value more than 500 is dangerous. Know the levels of humidity, dirt, dust and chemical pollutants as well, which could be potential threats to the fetus. Also, if you are constantly fatigued or suffer from sinus congestion and dryness in the nose and throat, the indoor air quality could be poor as well.
2. Stay Indoors
During heavy traffic and peak office hours, make sure to stay indoors. Take your pregnancy exercises or walks inside the house, rather at than the park or even terrace. This is particularly useful if the forecast warns of pollution. Additionally, try to create a healthy environment within the home by reducing the use of paints and sprays. This will make staying inside safe and comfortable.
3. Use Air Purifiers
Now that 90% of us are spending our days inside, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, an air purifier would be of great help. Efficient ones are scientifically tested to remove airborne bacteria, seasonal allergens, pollen, mould and several other impurities invisible to the human eye. They also tend to improve the air flow, remove unpleasant smells and neutralize smoke.
4. Maintain Hygiene Habits
The best maternity hospitals in Delhi ensure top-notch hygiene measures. But, additionally, you must take your own precautions. Wash your hands thoroughly when you return from the outdoors to remove any dust particles or germs. Clean your gums and brush your teeth to reduce any chances of oral intake of pollutants. Use a thick face mask every time you step out to keep yourself from inhaling the dust, pollution and germs.
5. Indoor Plants
The most natural way to stay away from pollution is to get aloe vera, bamboo palm, spider plant and tulsi plants. They are known to reduce carbon dioxide levels and increase oxygen. Both the mother and the growing child will be breathing in high quality air. This will further eliminate the chances of particles reaching the placenta and blood stream.
Apart from these effective steps, doctors at the best maternity hospital in Delhi suggest getting educated about the impact of air pollution. It will help new mothers make informed decisions.