hazards, toxic environment (chemical dust particles, gases, such as inhalation
anesthesia), medical or obstetrical complications, or employment regulations of the
(2) Activities that are dependent on a good sense of balance should be
discouraged, especially during the last half of pregnancy.
(3) Excessive fatigue is usually the reason for employment termination.
This may be prevented by modification of the job requirements temporarily and
adequate rest periods during the day.
(4) Patients who have sedentary jobs need to walk around at intervals and
should never sit or stand in one position for long periods. Chairs should provide
adequate back support. A footstool can help prevent pressure on veins, relieve strain
on varices, and minimize swelling of the feet.
b. Travel. This is perhaps a detail of prenatal care, which most patients think
very little about, unless they have a tendency to become nauseated or have had a
previous miscarriage, which precludes any extensive strain. Traveling should be
discussed with the physician, even though there is little restriction on travel from a
medical point of view. Extensive trips should be approved by the physician.
Traveling is not a cause of abortion or premature labor.
Lowered oxygen levels may cause fetal hypoxia in high-altitude regions.
(3) Fatigue or tension are primary problems due to change in personal
habits and diets. The patient should take frequent rest periods; stop and walk around
every two hours if traveling by auto. Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
These steps will help prevent fatigue, relieve tension, and increase circulation.
Consider traveling by air for long trips to reduce travel time.
Wear seat belts at all times (see figure 7-1).
Figure 7-1. Seat belt wear.