The nesting might be kicking in but you’ll be kicking yourself if you don’t stay away from some everyday products that could harm your baby.
Cleaning is a necessary, if less than exciting, part of life, and if the prospect of being a mum is kicking in the nesting instinct (no, us neither) or you’ve got visitors coming round, it’s a good idea to get clued up on what is and isn’t ok.
Don’t stick your head in the oven
Any chore which involves you using harmful chemical cleaners in a pokey, poorly-ventilated space is a big no-no. If you must clean the oven, use natural cleaners instead. White distilled vinegar and baking soda make an effective scouring cleanser.
No painting the nursery
You’ve got the nursery ready, now you just need to paint it. But paint fumes from latex paints can be toxic in pregnancy. They release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air that you breathe in. Unless the room is well-ventilated or you install fans to ensure proper circulation, it’s best to leave the painting to someone else.
Alternatively, buy environmentally friendly solvent and VOCs-free paint from Ecos Paints and get the roller brush out.
Aerosols are off-limits
You might find the fumes from aerosol cleaning products make you feel sick during pregnancy. The chemicals in aerosols are released into the air in a fine mist, which you will breathe in for several minutes and can settle on your skin. It has been found that these particles can cross the placenta and it’s possible they may affect the baby’s development and breathing.
It is always a good idea to avoid breathing harmful chemicals, and keeping them off your skin by wearing gloves and long sleeves. You could get someone else to do the cleaning, or you could rid your home of harmful chemicals and replace them with natural alternatives.
If you must use chemicals, make sure the rooms are well ventilated to minimise the amount you breathe in.
And the one you’ll miss the most…no cat litter cleaning
Sorry mums-to-be, this delightful chore is off-limits when you’re pregnant. Cat faeces can carry a parasite that causes toxoplasmosis, an infection that isn't serious for you but can be for your baby. It’s also found in undercooked meats and unpasteurised milk, hence the pregnancy food rules.
If you have been cleaning out the litter tray, remember your odds of contracting it are small and if you’ve had it, you can’t catch it again.
Err on the side of caution and get someone else to do it. If it has to be you, wear rubber gloves and give your hands a thorough soapy scrub afterwards.