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Being pregnant can be wonderful, challenging, tiring and amazing all at the same time.

You change and it seems like everything around you changes too, not the housework though – things keep getting dirty and you still need to wipe them clean.

However, before you tackle the greasy grill, or the carpet stain, get the lowdown of the do’s and don’ts of cleaning when you are pregnant.

1) Mind the cleaning detergents

Carpet, oven and some all-purpose cleaners (actually most) release toxic fumes that may irritate your airways. Inhaled, these could be dangerous for the fetus and may make you dizzy and nauseuous.

For this reason…

Open windows regularly. When you clean, open the windows to ventilate the room.

Did you know that the air at home is 200% more polluted than the air outdoors.

Toxic cleaning detergents, dirty carpets and upholstery corrupt the indoor air quality. Forgetting to open the windows often only makes matters worse.

Wear protective gloves. Chemicals in detergents may irritate the skin on your hands. During pregnancy you might want to wear gloves even when you wash the dishes (if you don’t do so already).

This is because the skin on your hands is sensitive as it is and it becomes doubly more during pregnancy. If you don’t want to feel your hands itchy or dry, it is worth giving gloves a chance.

Look at the labels. Avoid cleaning detergents labelled: “Danger”, “Caution”, “Poison” and never mix bleach with ammonia. The deadly combination was used to produce poisonous gas in WWI. Needless to say this experiment is absolutely forbidden for pregnant women.

The best thing to do is try and make your own cleaning solutions. You will be surprised, but most of them really work and you can always go back to your old favourites once the baby is born if you still wish to do so.

2) Organise Your Chores

Know your limitations.

If you were able to clean the home from top to bottom in a 3 hour cleaning spree before you fell pregnant, now you might find that difficult to do.

For this reason, do a little and often. One or two chores everyday will help you keep the house clean at all times. Do laundry on Monday, clean the bathroom on Tuesday and mop and sweep on Wednesday.

Make your cleaning sessions 15 or 30 minutes long and have time to sit down for a bit, relax your back and lift up your legs.

3) Delegate

Once your baby arrives, you’ll probably be cleaning up something every day for the next 18 years or so, if you are lucky, that is.

So take advantage of your “condition” to minimize your cleaning chores now.

There is no shame in playing the pregnancy card from time to time in order to get help from your husband and close family.

When there are days you don’t feel well don’t stress over coking and cleaning, but focus on getting better.

Delegate chores which involve a lot of bending over, heavy lifting, or climbing on top of chairs to clean the windows or on top of cupboards.

Remember that during pregnancy your hormones soften your connective tissue and you become more vulnerable and prone to injuries.

Also, don’t clean mould yourself, better call professional cleaners who not only know how to clean it, but know how to protect themselves.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com
  • I still cleaned, but I just took it easy.

    Reply

  • I found that I simply had to let things go and allow others to clean my shower and bath tub as there was no way I could do it.

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  • Also watch what you are doing in the garden. Be aware of your contact with fertilisers, sprays and toxic plants, and avoid them where you can.

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  • I’m 36 weeks pregnant with my second. Both times it has been business as usual unfortunately. But we already avoid using cleaning chemicals. I think that I will try and use my ‘condition’ in the last month to justify a break from cleaning!

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  • I hadn’t considered any of these, I just cleaned as normal :/ It’s so hard towards the end, but no one else will do it


    • yeah just don’t get too much chemicals

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  • Good tips! This is interesting! Thank you for sharing this!

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  • Open windows are usually a good thing in general to bring in fresh air.

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  • good topic

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  • My Auntie cleaned one room a day. Floors and Dusting. She washed once or twice a week. The windows got cleaned when they needed it. Those undercover didn’t need doing as often so if she started to get tired they were the ones that got left. Sometimes the inside of them got dusted after windy weather suddenly turned to a dust storm. The windows were opened every morning to allow fresh air to flow through the house provided there was no rain. They were closed early in hot weather and blinds pulled down. It definitely kept the house cooler. She did a comparison with a thermometer one day when I was staying there. Both rooms faced the same way and got the sun for the same length of time. No airconditioning at that stage. A pedestal fan worked quite well in small rooms.

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  • I don’t think I stopped doing things around the house at all when I was pregnant.. I just sort of kept going!

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  • great tips and good ideas, thanks for the article

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  • I had to learn not to be so picky when I started delegating chores.

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  • Great tips, particularly taking regular breaks and staying away from strong chemical cleaners

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  • Very timely and sage advice for me as a VERY heavily pregnant lady at the moment =)

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  • This article is full of such wise advice. Vinegar and water is a great cleaner.

    Reply

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