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Pregnancy: Work and School Issues - Topic Overview

Many women continue working or going to school (or both) during pregnancy. Doing so can increase your activity level, help you focus on things other than your body's changes, and prevent you from feeling lonely.

Work or school activities that mostly involve sitting can usually be continued right up to the due date in an uncomplicated pregnancy. But if your work or school involves more than 3 hours of standing at a time or a lot of walking or demanding physical activity, discuss with your doctor how long you can continue this activity. It's likely that you will simply have to pay attention to how you feel as your pregnancy progresses and take precautions not to get overly tired.

Precautions

  • Avoid exposure to people who are sick.
  • Avoid being around harmful substances, such as hazardous chemicals, fumes, or X-rays.
  • Avoid lifting heavy objects, standing on ladders, and using or being near machinery that vibrates.
  • Women with uncomplicated pregnancies can usually keep working until they go into labor. But women who have jobs that require long periods of standing or repeated lifting, or who often have job-related fatigue, may be at a higher risk for poor fetal growth, preeclampsia, and preterm labor.1, 2

Cutting back or stopping work

Your doctor may want you to reduce or stop working at some point in your pregnancy if you have:

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: July 23, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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