I had an amazing time having 2 summer pregnancies. My first baby was due on September 5th and my second baby was due on May 17th.

Although the 1st born was due in near fall, however, the place I live weather is always hot and humid even in late September. The good thing is I quickly learned how to survive overheating in summer pregnancy with a few tips I’m going to share with you in this article.

Pregnancy really cranks up the heat! Your blood volume can increase by as much as 45% (as the research shows), and lugging around an extra 20 to 30 pounds means your body works overtime. This extra effort can make you sweat more and dehydrate quicker.

Plus, your heart is working harder too, with cardiac output rising sharply in the first trimester and continuing to climb through the second. All this activity means it’s easier for your body to overheat, which can be risky for both you and your baby. It’s crucial to stay cool and hydrated to manage these changes effectively.

What To Expect Being Pregnant During Summer?

Well, did you know that during pregnancy, your body temperature naturally ticks upward because of all that increased blood flow? That’s right, you’re not just imagining the extra warmth.

But then, add summer heat to the mix, and it’s a whole new level of UGH! Expect a few summer-specific issues like:

  • Fatigue
  • Dehydration
  • Sunburn
  • Heat rash
  • Headaches
  • Nausea

All the usual pregnancy discomforts like swelling, exhaustion, and feeling overheated get a big boost from the summer temps.

I remember my hands and feet swelling up so much that my rings were a no-go, and bending down to shave my legs felt like a workout! And the sweating, the places I discovered I could sweat, yukh!

But it wasn’t all struggles and sweaty moments. Having a summer pregnancy has its perks! Dressing summer pregnancy outfits was a breeze with fewer layers needed, slipping sandals on and off was effortless, and there was always a cooling fan or some AC within reach.

Plus, welcoming summer and fall babies is pretty magical. You get the best seasons to enjoy the outdoors and introduce your little one to the joys of fresh air right from the start.

It’s just that last trimester during the summer months that really tests your mettle.

Causes Of Overheating In Pregnancy

When you’re pregnant, feeling like you’re overheating isn’t just uncomfortable—it can be concerning. There are quite a few reasons why you might start to feel too hot, but some factors are more common culprits than others.

It’s crucial to be extra cautious during pregnancy, especially in warm conditions. Here are some common causes of overheating in pregnancy:

  • Hot weather: Just stepping out on a sweltering day can elevate your body temperature.
  • Excessive physical activity: Especially in the heat, activities like jogging or even long walks can become too much for your pregnant body.
  • Strenuous exercise: Extended periods of intense exercise can significantly raise your core temperature.
  • Extended exposure to heat: This could be from sitting in a sauna, soaking in a hot tub, or taking very hot baths for too long.
  • Certain medications: Some medicines can interfere with your body’s natural ability to cool down.
  • Illness: Being sick can also affect your body’s heat regulation.

The American Heart Association specifically warns that the summer heat brings special health risks for pregnant women, emphasizing the need to take these risks seriously.

Understanding The Real Risks Of Overheating During Pregnancy

Overheating might sound like a minor discomfort—something a quick splash of water and a shady spot could easily fix.

However, when you’re pregnant, the stakes are much higher. Your body heats up faster than usual, and maintaining a normal temperature becomes more crucial yet challenging. Here’s why overheating is a big deal during pregnancy:

The Serious Consequences Of High Body Temperatures

The risks of getting too hot extend beyond mere discomfort. Research shows that elevated body temperatures during pregnancy can lead to serious adverse outcomes, including preterm birth, stillbirth, and babies born at low birth weights.

Conditions like congenital heart defects and neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, have also been connected to maternal overheating.

Additionally, high fever in early pregnancy is specifically linked to increased risks of severe neural tube defects, including anencephaly and encephalocele.

The Dehydration

When overheated, your body can quickly become dehydrated, complicating pregnancy further. Dehydration strains not just your kidneys but also impacts your cognitive function, digestion, cardiac health, and can trigger headaches.

During pregnancy, it’s recommended to drink at least 8-12 glasses of water a day—and even more when you’re active or it’s particularly hot out.

Amniotic Fluid Concerns

Amniotic fluid is vital for your baby’s protection and development, facilitating movement and helping regulate their temperature. Overheating and the resulting dehydration can decrease amniotic fluid levels, a condition known as oligohydramnios. This can lead to birth defects, miscarriage, and even increase the risk of pre-term labor and stillbirth.

The Threat Of Pre-Term Labor

Research from the National Institutes of Health indicates that exposure to extreme heat, especially during the first seven weeks of pregnancy, can significantly increase the risk of premature birth.

Extreme heatwaves early in pregnancy have been associated with an 11% increase in deliveries before 34 weeks. Continuous exposure to high temperatures can also escalate the likelihood of premature delivery between 36-38 weeks by 21%.

Increased Risk Of Urinary Tract Infections

Pregnant women are already more susceptible to urinary tract infections (UTIs) due to hormonal changes. While data on dehydration‘s impact on UTIs is mixed, recent studies suggest that increasing water intake can help prevent recurrent infections, particularly cystitis in premenopausal women.

Tips On How To Survive Summer Pregnancy And Avoid Overheating:

You’ve probably heard all about the “pregnancy glow” and the adorable baby bump, but let’s be real— it doesn’t always feel that glamorous, especially during a scorching summer when you’re heavily pregnant.

Here are my top tips for surviving a summer pregnancy. I’ll cover everything from keeping cool at night to actually getting some sleep, to making the most of the warm weather without feeling like you’re melting away.

1. Stay Hydrated:

Staying hydrated during pregnancy is non-negotiable, especially through those sweltering summer months when dehydration can sneak up on you. With your body working double time to support your growing baby, it’s crucial to keep fluid intake high to ensure both you and your little one stay healthy.

Carry a water bottle with you everywhere—hydration on the go is key, and it’s especially important not to wait until you’re thirsty to drink; thirst is a sign you’re already dehydrated. To make water more appealing, try infusing it with fruits like lemon or orange, or whip up a refreshing smoothie.

Limiting caffeine is also wise as it can contribute to dehydration and has been linked to lower birth weight. The Research suggests keeping caffeine under 200 mg a day to mitigate these risks.

Watch for signs of dehydration such as:

  1. Infrequent urination
  2. Dark-colored urine
  3. Dry mouth
  4. Braxton Hicks contractions
  5. Frequent headaches
  6. Dizziness
  7. Feeling unusually tired after heat exposure

Staying hydrated is essential during pregnancy and nursing. To make it easier, try infusing your water with fruits like lemon, lime, or strawberries for a flavorful boost.

If you find it hard to drink enough water, consider using a time-marked water bottle that you need to refill three times a day.

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It’s a simple way to ensure you and your baby are adequately hydrated, especially during a tough summer pregnancy. Follow these tips to stay cool and comfortable.

Keeping on top of your hydration can help you manage these symptoms and enjoy a healthier summer pregnancy.

2. Wear Loose Comfortable Maternity Clothes

Summer pregnancies have their perks, especially when it comes to fashion. I loved the ease of slipping into a tank dress and flip-flops, no bending to wrestle with socks, no layers, and no need for those pricey maternity coats you’ll never wear again.

Plus, it’s the perfect chance to wear those snug dresses and proudly show off your bump, something I would hesitate to do otherwise! Summer maternity wear is generally lighter, less bulky, and more budget-friendly.

A big learning from my first pregnancy was buying too many maternity clothes, thinking I’d use them for future pregnancies. Instead, focus on a few versatile, lightweight pieces to keep cool.

Lightweight maternity dresses from places like Amazon can be a lifesaver in the heat. Here are some top picks to help you stay comfortable:

Investing in the right maternity clothes can make a hot summer much more enjoyable!

3. Eat Cool Foods And Desserts

Eating cool foods is a fantastic way to stay comfortable during a hot summer pregnancy. Opt for water-rich fruits and vegetables like melons, berries, cucumbers, oranges, and grapefruits.

Raw veggies such as lettuce, celery, and carrots are also excellent for keeping cool. For a fun twist, try popsicles made from fresh juice, or enjoy a bowl of cold soup.

Natural yogurt topped with fresh fruit offers a refreshing snack too. And if your stomach agrees, indulge in some ice cream for a delightful treat!

My biggest pregnancy craving was ice cream. It was the perfect treat to satisfy my cravings and cool down on those warm summer evenings. So, go ahead and indulge in all the ice cream you want because now’s the time you have the perfect excuse!

Here are 14 Best Foods to Eat when you’re pregnant!

If you find yourself reaching for ice cream daily like I did, you might consider exploring healthier alternatives that still fulfill your frozen dessert cravings but come with fewer calories or additives.

4. Try To Stay In The Shade

If you either live in a hot climate or are visiting one, it’s crucial to take extra care to manage the heat. Staying out in the sun can be really daunting to your body, even if you’re keeping up with your hydration. To avoid the worst of the heat, try to schedule your outings for early in the morning or later in the evening when temperatures are more bearable.

During heat advisories, it’s best to stay indoors where it’s cool. If you find yourself at an outdoor event on a sweltering day, make sure to take breaks in the shade or go inside if you can. It’s totally fine to spend more time in an air-conditioned space or in front of a fan.

And if you’re at a park without much relief from the heat, don’t push yourself. It might be a good idea to cut your visit short or cool down in your car with the AC on for a bit. Never feel guilty about needing to take it easy—keeping cool is not just about comfort, but about staying healthy and safe during your pregnancy.

5. Use Sunscreen To Protect Yourself From Heat

Dealing with sunburn on top of the usual pregnancy aches and pains is no joke!

While you can’t completely escape the discomforts of pregnancy, you can certainly shield yourself from the sun by choosing a high-quality mineral sunscreen. I discovered Earth Mama Mineral Sunscreen after my pregnancy, and it’s been a game-changer.

I love this sunscreen so much!. Unlike chemical sunscreens, which absorb UV rays using synthetic chemicals, mineral sunscreens use natural minerals like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide to reflect UV rays away from the skin.

This is particularly important during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Opting for mineral sunscreen means you’re applying something safe and gentle on your skin—something that won’t harm you or your baby. It’s a small but powerful way to take care of both your health and comfort.

6. Enjoy A Good Pool Day

I know the thought of slipping into a swimsuit might not be the most appealing right now, but trust me, lounging in the pool can be incredibly refreshing on a hot summer day.

Being in the water is also fantastic for easing some of those pregnancy aches. It helps relieve pressure from your joints and organs, making you feel a bit lighter and less burdened.

Consider buying a simple blow-up pool so you can chill and catch some rays right in your backyard!

When it comes to choosing maternity swimwear, if you’re comfortable with it, a two-piece can be a great option. It allows your belly some freedom and tends to keep you cooler than a tankini or a one-piece, which can feel a bit stifling when it’s really hot out.

You might think your old bikinis will do the trick since it’s mainly your belly that’s growing, but your hips and breasts will likely increase in size too, making your pre-pregnancy swimsuits a tough fit.

You don’t necessarily need a special maternity bikini, but opting for styles with more breast coverage and a wider bottom might offer more comfort. If you prefer non-maternity swimwear, just remember to size up—one or two sizes larger than your pre-pregnancy size should accommodate your changing shape nicely.

7. Take It Easy On Your Sodium Intake

Summer is definitely a time for enjoying all those tasty treats, and I’m all for satisfying those cravings—but in moderation, of course.

However, there’s a catch when it comes to sodium. High salt intake can lead to water retention. While it might seem like retaining water is beneficial, especially when you’re trying to stay hydrated, it actually can disrupt the balance your body tries to maintain among your organs, including your kidneys. This imbalance can lead to issues like edema (swelling) or even high blood pressure.

Plus, if you’re not drinking enough water, high sodium intake can increase your risk of dehydration.

So, the takeaway here is to be cautious with how much salt you’re consuming. Enjoy your delicious summer foods, but remember to keep an eye on the sodium to avoid complicating your pregnancy with unnecessary health issues.

8. Put Your Feet Up

Pregnancy increases the volume of both blood and fluids in your body, leading to inevitable swelling. Add in the summer heat, which causes your blood vessels to expand, and the swelling can become even more pronounced.

This is especially true in the later stages of pregnancy or if you’re dealing with conditions like preeclampsia, where your feet and hands often swell first. Due to gravity, all that extra fluid tends to pool in the lowest parts of your body. A simple and effective way to combat this is by elevating your limbs.

Sit back, relax, and lift your feet up high on a pillow. Raise your arms above your head as well. These positions help redistribute the fluids more evenly across your body and can significantly reduce swelling. So take a moment to unwind and literally put your feet up—it’s not just comfortable, it’s beneficial.

9. Keep A Water Spray Fan

Keep a water spray fan handy during those sweltering summer months, especially when you’re pregnant. The heat can be unbearable with the extra discomforts of pregnancy like swelling and fatigue.

A portable, battery-operated fan with a misting feature can be a lifesaver. It provides a quick cool down with a refreshing spritz of water combined with a breeze, helping you beat the heat.

Not only is it essential for keeping you comfortable when you’re out in the sun, but it’s also great for after the baby arrives. You can use it to gently cool down your little one when you’re enjoying time outdoors together. This simple tool can make a big difference in how you and your baby experience those hot days.

10. Shop At A Mall

Consider making the mall your go-to spot for staying cool and getting a bit of exercise during your summer pregnancy. This isn’t about going on a shopping spree; rather, it’s about finding a comfortable retreat from the heat.

Malls are perfect for this because they’re air-conditioned and spacious enough to allow for leisurely walks. You can enjoy the summer light streaming in through skylights without being overwhelmed by the heat.

It’s a fantastic way to get out of the house, move around, and stave off any cabin fever while keeping cool and comfortable.

11. Invest In A Shower Stool

If standing in the shower is becoming a challenge during your pregnancy, consider getting a shower stool or tub bench. Pregnancy can lower your blood pressure, making you prone to lightheadedness, especially under hot water or when bending over to shave your legs.

As your pregnancy progresses, even standing for short periods like 10 minutes can feel exhausting and might leave you feeling dizzy. I experienced this myself towards the end of my showers and often had to lie down immediately after.

A shower stool not only helps you sit comfortably but also makes it easier to manage tasks like shaving your legs—something that becomes quite a feat as your belly grows and your feet become a mere memory!

This simple addition can make your shower time safer and more comfortable, allowing you to keep up with personal care as you rock those summer dresses and shorts.

12. Take A Nap

Overheating during pregnancy—not to mention the regular exhaustion from carrying a little one around is real! It’s crucial to listen to your body and give it the rest it needs.

If you can, carve out some time in your day for a refreshing nap. It’s a simple way to recharge, especially when dealing with the extra strain pregnancy puts on your body. If the weather’s too warm, turning on a fan can help cool you down and might even aid your sleep.

The steady hum of a fan often doubles as white noise, which can be incredibly soothing and help drown out disruptive sounds. If you haven’t tried sleeping with white noise before, now might be the perfect time to start. It can make a significant difference in the quality of your rest!

13. Reduce Your Cooking Time

When you’re pregnant, especially during the summer, it’s essential to lighten your load wherever possible. Cooking every night, along with all the other household duties, can be overwhelming. Here are some strategies to ease the burden:

  1. Meal Prep: Choose one day a week to plan and prepare all your meals. This can significantly cut down on daily cooking time and reduce stress.
  2. Order Takeout: Give yourself a break and order takeout a few nights a week. It’s a simple way to ease the cooking duties and enjoy a variety of foods.
  3. Grocery Delivery: This service has been a lifesaver for me! Instead of trekking to the grocery store, have your groceries delivered right to your doorstep.
  4. $5 Meal Plan: If you’re new to meal planning and wondering how you can eat healthy while on a budget, I have found another best way for you. The $5 Meal Plan!

This plan is perfect for anyone who wants to save money and time with their meals. You will get one week of recipes that are easy as well as a list of groceries according to your dietary needs or restrictions- all delivered every Friday right in your inboxes at just 5 bucks per month! Sign up now just for $5!

Utilizing these options can significantly reduce your time in the kitchen, allowing you to focus more on resting and enjoying your pregnancy.

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my tips to survive summer pregnancy in this scorching heat

13 Tips To Survive Overheating In Summer Pregnancy