Pregnancy Myths: Fake or Real?

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Every pregnant woman on the face of the earth has likely heard some pregnancy myths. Some are cute. Some are funny. Some are more true than untrue, and some pregnancy myths may even be dangerous.

Old wives’ tales are little tidbits of advice that are passed down from generation to generation. Some may have a grain or two of truth, while others are completely off the wall. Let’s take a look at a few of these pregnancy-old wives tales.


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I’ve gathered the top pregnancy myths below


Heartburn Means Baby Will Have a Full Head of Hair

One common old wives’ tale about pregnancy is that a mother who has a lot of heartburn will have a baby who has a head full of hair. As it turns out, there may be a grain of truth to this one. The same pregnancy hormones that relax the opening at the bottom of the esophagus, which causes heartburn, also influence the amount of hair your baby has. While science still has not proven this old wives tale, it seems it is well on its way to being shown to be true!


Taking a Bath Can Drown the Baby

Believe it or not, it was once thought that taking a bath would drown the baby! We know today that while it is untrue, there is a tiny grain of truth in the form of “be careful when you take a bath while pregnant.” That grain of truth is not that taking a bath is unsafe, but that you should watch the water temperature you are using. Aim for tepid or lukewarm water or water that is no warmer than 100°F instead of scorchingly hot to both enjoy your bath and keep you and your baby safe.

The reasoning behind avoiding the super hot bath water temperature is pretty simple. No, you will not “cook” your baby. However, because the body temperature of a pregnant woman runs higher than usual, you may find yourself quickly overheating. This can lead to passing out, which is dangerous anywhere, but especially in the tub.


Raising Your Arms Above Your Head Will Strangle the Baby

This pregnancy old wives’ tale is kind of silly when you think about it, but it has persisted through the generations. The fable is that you should not raise your arms above your head because the umbilical cord will wrap around the baby’s neck. This could not be farther from the truth.

What is true is that because your center of gravity changes when you are pregnant, by doing the wrong type of stretches, you can painfully stretch ligaments and muscles. To be safe, it is best to speak with your doctor before you begin any form of stretching. He or she will advise you on the proper types of stretching for pregnant women.


How You Carry Can Tell the Baby’s Sex

Want to know what sex your baby will be? Just look at how you’re carrying! According to pregnancy lore, carrying high means you will have a girl, while carrying low predicts a boy. With that said, there is no scientific basis for this old wives tale, but it sure is fun to guess!


What You Crave Can Determine the Baby’s Sex

Another pregnancy myth that supposedly helps predict the sex of your new baby is based on what you are craving. Those old wives who got together and discussed it decided that sweet cravings mean you’re carrying a girl while salty cravings mean a boy. As we all know, though, this is entirely untrue. Unless they are for non-food items, pregnancy cravings are just that; cravings. However, if you have cravings for non-food items, talk with your OB as this could be a sign of a condition called PICA.


Taking Castor Oil Will Induce Labor

It is hard to believe in the days of medical science like we have today that this lore still persists, but it does. Let’s be honest; it persists because women who are at term are usually really ready to give birth. However, castor oil will not induce labor. What it will do is possibly induce diarrhea with excruciating cramps. Because of this, it is best to stay far away from this tale.


Sex Can Induce Labor

Believe it or not, this one is true! If you are at term, there is an enzyme in the little swimmers that can soften your cervix and induce labor! However, this does not mean sex is not safe when you are pregnant. It absolutely is! The enzyme that can induce labor will only do so when your body is ready to go into labor. So you should not let this true old wives tale about pregnancy deter you from being intimate with your partner.



Regardless of if you choose to believe any of the pregnancy myths or not, it’s still pretty fun trying to predict based off of the old wives’ tales. Do you believe any? What old wives tales would you add to the list?




About Morgan Wender

I’m a boy mom, dog mom, bee mom, lover of all things Disney, and lover of making the best out of this chaotic life of mine. I created this platform to share my life, and help normalize “big topic” motherhood issues. I hope you enjoy my mix of life, love, levity, and everything in between.Now that you know a little about me, I would love to know more about you! Find me over on Instagram, and shoot me a DM if you would like to chat!the journey

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Hi, I’m Morgan! I created this platform to be able to share my life, help normalize big topic motherhood issues, and help simplify all the things I learned the complicated way. I hope you enjoy my mix of life, love, levity, and everything in between

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