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Q. I am pregnant, and I went into a temperate pool, which was 98 F. Will it affect my baby?

Answered by
Dr. Sonal Prasad
and medically reviewed by Dr. K Shobana
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 02, 2017 and last reviewed on: Nov 03, 2021

Hello doctor,

I found out that I am pregnant, and the next day I went to a spa. Knowing that hot tub and sauna are not good for me, the lady at the spa told me to go to the temperate pool, which was 98 F. I went for five minutes, and now I am so scared. Did I do something wrong? Please help.

#

Hello,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • Do not worry, sauna is to be avoided in pregnancy, but not ones with temperature as body temperature. The lady at the spa was wise.
  • Make sure you take your antenatal vitamins throughout pregnancy. For more information consult a doctor soon.

Hi doctor,

Thank you so much. I am worried because I read online that hot temperature gives birth defect. So you confirm that the 98 F pool will not give my baby any birth defect? In addition, if I want to take a bath at home if the water is 98 F, is that fine? Thank you so much for your time. I was really worried and could not sleep.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • You have read it right. High temperatures do cause birth defects, but 98 F is close to body temperature, thus not that hazardous. You can very well use water of the same temperature for a bath.
  • Make sure you avoid exposure to any kind of radiation, allergy causing drugs or foods, in fact, it would be wise not to try any new food, that you have not eaten earlier during the first three months of pregnancy. Avoid spas and medications.
  • Keep taking antenatal vitamins and get level 2 ultrasound done at 20 weeks. Forget the stress and have good nights sleep. These things boost the baby's brain development. Happy parenthood. Take care. For further queries consult a doctor online back.

Thank you doctor,

What temperature is considered hot to give birth defect? Sorry to ask, but I am so stressed out and feel so bad that I went into the pool.

#

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • Theoretically, 101 F is considered hot to cause a birth defect, but practically temperature over 99 to 100 F should be avoided. For more information consult back.

Thank you doctor,

Did I cause any problem in the 98 F? I am not sleeping because of the guilt.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • No, there is no problem in 98 F. If you need further surety, get an ultrasound for nuchal translucency at 11 to 13 weeks along with a dual marker, both will come out to be normal and you will be stress and guilt-free. For further queries consult a doctor online back.

Thank you doctor,

Sorry to bother, but I need to be explained why 98 F is not a problem. I think if you give me a medical explanation about temperature and why 98 F is fine, I will feel better and finally sleep. Thank you so much, you have been really helpful.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • See, birth defects happen among other reasons due to high temperature as high temperature leads to the formation of free radicals, which disrupts organ growth.
  • Normal body temperature is 37oC, which converts to 98.6 F. As 98 F is close to body temperature, it does not produce free radicals to cause defects. The higher temperature of 100 and 101 F, in the case of fever, hot weather, etc., are harmful, not body temperature of 98 F. Sauna has a high temperature of 120 to 125 F. Do not worry, you are fine. For more information consult back.

Thank you doctor,

Thank you so much.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

During the first three months of pregnancy, you should be very careful. You should have sent a friend or family member to make such inquiries. Exposure of 101 F or more does expose the fetus to congenital malformations due to the formation of free radicals. The good thing is that the room temperature was well low. Make sure you keep taking antenatal vitamins (Folic acid) 5 mg once a day as it helps in clearing malformations.

Thank you doctor,

Oh god, what have I done? I am so scared now. I went and sat there to test the temperature and felt better about it. Instead, I did worst. Even just sitting on it can be harmful. Please answer. I am devasted.

#

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Please do not be tense. The study says 101 degrees Fahrenheit of core body temperature (and not local area exposure) is a slight exposure, and there is nothing to get worried about. (as your exposure was local and the room temperature was well in control). Also, note that with exposure to heat, there is only a four percent chance of malformation. And with regular intake of prenatal vitamins (tablet Folic acid), the risk is reduced to 0.4-0.8%. I suggest that rather than dwelling on what has happened and its guilt (actually, there is nothing to be guilty or worried about), you should focus your energies on positive things like taking prenatal vitamins and regular check-ups. Everything will be fine. Do not worry.

Thank you doctor,

On the next day, I noticed some pink spots on my bikini. Do you think I got some damage since I was sitting on the marble heated? Is it related!? I called the doctor to see about the spots, and she said it was not normal as she did not know about going to the spa to check the temperature and quit myself. I did it thinking that it would help me. The spa people told me that it was not very hot. I sat on the seat for 30 minutes, talking with the head of the spa. I am a mess now because I think that this spotting could be related. I started to be depressed, and I am normally not paranoid. This pregnancy is freaking me out. I need to know that all is good. Please help.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Please do not be worried. Get your ultrasound done tomorrow, and let us carry on from thee. All the very best dear.

Thank you doctor,

Hello, I went for the sonogram yesterday, and the gestational sac was empty. My last period was 40 days back. So I am so surprised that they could not see anything. The sonogram machine could not detect anything but the sac. The doctor said to go back next week. Now I feel so guilty that my baby did not develop because of the spa and stress, and that is why it is not there. The doctor said that could be a miscarriage. Please help.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

The gestational sac is the sac in which the baby develops. If there is no fetal node in the gestational sac, there is no baby, only the covering. The presence of only a gestational sac can be due to two reasons.

1) The baby is developing late (the pregnancy itself is delayed).

2) You had what is known as biochemical pregnancy (where pregnancy test comes out to be positive, but there is nothing on the ultrasound).

The only way you can do it for sure is by doing a repeat ultrasound after a week. If there is the presence of a fetal node, the pregnancy will progress (was delayed). If there is no fetal node, then the pregnancy was only biochemical with pregnancy test positive but no fetus (baby) inside. It is not the SPA, but the stress might be the causative factor of the same. Keep your fingers crossed and hope for the best.

Thank you doctor,

Do you think that stress can cause it?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Stress does cause difficulty for people to conceive. Like in your case, the conception ( pregnancy) itself is not yet established. It is possible only when we see the fetal node by the next ultrasound, confirming the pregnancy.

Thank you doctor,

So, unfortunately, I got a miscarriage. The sonogram showed only the gestational sac and the yolk like I was at the fifth week of pregnancy, but it was my seventh week. Shortly after a course, I started bleeding, and I was devastated. So you are saying that this was caused by the stress I had? Does stress cause abortion? Everybody should be on anti-depressive at this point if you are telling the reason as stress.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

I am so sorry, dear. Stress may be one of the causes. It would be advisable to get in touch with a psychologist because of your anxiety levels. Please do not start any antidepressants unless prescribed by a psychiatrist.


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