Extreme heat on the Gulf Coast causing complications for some pregnant women

BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) – Triple digit temperatures are impacting all of us, but the heat can be especially harmful to those who are vulnerable like pregnant women. Health experts explain they may need to take some extra precautions as summer continues to heat up.

“It definitely is extremely hot and the hormones are raging,” Georgie Weir said.

Weir is one of many expectant mothers leaving the doctor’s office with side effects due to rising temperatures along the Gulf Coast.

“They actually did tell me I was dehydrated,” Weir said. “I have to drink more water. We bought the little packets of Liquid IV’s and we are taking those as well.”

OB/GYN’s explain women in early pregnancy like Weir are more prone to experience dehydration. If not kept at bay, that problem can lead to even more complications, like early labor.

“A pregnant woman can start to cramp and the uterus can start to contract and even put them into pre-term labor when the baby is not quite ready to be delivered so it’s just extremely important to stay well hydrated, stay out of the sun when you can,” Ocean Springs OB/GYN Dr. Jeremy Bertrand said.

However, health experts say Vitamin D from the sun is also needed during pregnancy. That’s why some women are soaking up the sun, in moderation.

“We are taking pool days at the waterpark, I got a season pass,” Weird said. “So we are taking it one day at a time, staying indoors, staying in the A/C, and trying to stay as comfortable as possible.”

Doctors recommend these extra precautions to ensure that both baby and mom are kept as healthy as possible this summer.

“Have a fan by you if you can, and definitely staying well hydrated can go a long way,” Dr. Bertrand said.

As women approach the end of their pregnancies, they may experience shortness of breath and dizziness. Doctors say it’s important to try and cool off, if that happens.

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