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.
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.