While infrared saunas are great for health and wellbeing, it is recommended that pregnant women avoid sauna use for the duration of their pregnancy. The main reason saunas should be avoided is because high temperatures can increase the risk of complications or birth defects.
Pregnant women are more susceptible to dehydration, dizziness and lower blood pressure. These symptoms will accelerate during times of extreme heat and become potentially hazardous to the baby.
Risk of Hyperthermia
During the early months of pregnancy, the body and brain are developing. Putting strain on the mother’s body is risky.
Increasing our core temperature above 38 degrees can cause hyperthermia. When hyperthermia occurs for long periods during the first trimester, there is a risk of neural tube defects, heart defects and oral left defects.
While the first trimester is the most dangerous time, it’s important for pregnant women to avoid saunas and hot water baths during the whole nine months.
Other Hot Places to Avoid During Pregnancy
It’s not the sauna that’s of risk to pregnant women, it’s the heat. For this reason, there are other places to avoid during pregnancy. Hot baths, hot showers and spending time outside during 11-2pm should be avoidable.
Safe alternatives to saunas
People use saunas particularly for muscle relaxation. Yoga and meditation are safe alternatives for pregnant women. New mothers often ease back into sauna therapy slowly and combine with these low risk alternatives for the first few months after the birth.