Hear everybody out, but do not listen. This has probably been one of the best advices I got after giving birth.
During and after pregnancy, you're hoarded with so many do's and don't's that you either get thoroughly confused or blindly follow each and every thing told to you. I went and am still going through the same phase. The worst is when these come from those who you thought would know better.
- Don't eat brinjals, else your baby will be dark. Really? The fact is that brinjal is heavy to digest and may cause acidity. However, the baby's complexion is purely genetic and has nothing to do with brinjal!
- Have milk with saffron to ensure that the baby is fair. Again! To something like this, I'd say that we should even start applying Fair n Lovely on the baby bump!!
- Eat for two as you need the extra calories for another person growing within you. The fact is that you need to eat just about 250-300 extra calories, so an extra chapati in lunch and a sandwich in the evening would suffice. Eating for two would only leave you with too much of the extra weight you would find difficult to get rid of.
- Acidity or heartburn is due to the baby's (in the womb) growing hair! Now, how is that possible? In fact, acidity is a common problem during pregnancy.
- Rest as much as possible and do not exercise. Well, while excessive exercise and heavy weightlifting is an absolute no, regular walk and exercise is important for a healthy pregnancy.
- Eating ghee and butter would help in normal delivery. This happens through muscle contractions and the ghee and butter do absolutely nothing to smoothen the baby's track (if that is the logic)! It will only give you extra kilos you would find difficult to shed later.
- Watching an eclipse is bad for the baby. When my father first got the news, the first thing he called to tell me was that there was an eclipse on August 25 around midnight and I shouldn't be out then. An eclipse is said to harm the baby and cause a deformity. Well, I surely wasn't loitering around at midnight then; however, a baby is well protected in the mother's womb to be harmed by an eclipse.
- Itching the baby bump would cause stretch marks. As the skin stretches, some of us experience itching; however, it is not related to stretch marks in any way. Unless you are one of the lucky few, you will have the tiger marks during and after birth. While some oils and creams are said to reduce them, there's no way to prevent them completely.
- The day you conceive determines the sex of the child. If so, then whatever happened to the X and Y thing we learned in school!
- If the fetal heart rate is slow, it's a boy, else a girl. To be honest, I always heard horses racing during the visits to the doc and I have a baby boy :)
- You will not have enough milk as you don't drink as much milk! Now, how is this even related? A cow eats grass (and all sorts of junk), right?
- As the baby starts speaking, your hair fall will increase. Hair fall post the baby's birth is due to the hormone withdrawal that takes place then. Guess, this myth came into being as it's at the same time when a baby starts babbling too.
- You and the baby should not go out for the first 40 days after birth. Well, even I have been confined in the house during this period. There's only so much you can do to fight off such myths. In other countries, though, babies as old as a couple of weeks even go grocery shopping. However, this myth does give you time to regain strength and allow the child to adjust to the world outside, while keeping you both away from infections.
- Avoid working on the computer or reading after giving birth as that weakens the eye. I have not taken a day's break from work since delivery and haven't had my eyes checked since either :)
These were a few that I could rattle off without much thinking. That's as much you can expect from a sleep-deprived mother :)
Go on and add those you may have heard (or even suffered) :)
Will be back soon. Till then, take care and stay precious :)