Working While Pregnant: Do's and Don'ts

Working while pregnant is a decision that depends on how you feel about it, as well as the recommendations of your doctor. Learn more.
Working While Pregnant: Do's and Don'ts
Mara Amor López

Written and verified by the psychologist Mara Amor López.

Last update: 05 May, 2023

Are you expecting a baby, but want to continue working while pregnant? You can do it, as long as there’s nothing that puts your pregnancy at risk. This stage doesn’t have to break your daily routine if you feel healthy and productive. What you should keep in mind are the things you should and shouldn’t do to avoid unnecessary risks.

Pregnancy involves many changes in the body and in the mood of the woman, but this doesn’t have to be an obstacle to performing in the professional field. What you do have to take into account is the type of work you do. In this article, we’ll give you some tips on the subject. Don’t miss it!

Working while pregnant

A pregnant woman working in an office setting.
The first thing you need to consider is whether your workplace is a safe and healthy place to work. If it is, your pregnancy doesn’t have to be an obstacle.

Logically, working while pregnant requires taking the appropriate precautions to avoid problems. Also, keep in mind that pregnancy involves a multitude of physical, emotional,l and psychological changes that may affect you at some point.

In the first trimester, which is when the major hormonal changes and increased metabolic activity are triggered, you may feel drained of energy. This can affect your performance at work. In this regard, deciding to stop will depend on you and what your gynecologist or midwife recommends.

If your work requires you to be constantly on the move or moving from one place to another, you may need to slow down, especially after the sixth month. In the third trimester, fatigue increases and back pain, joint pain, muscle tension, fatigue due to the weight of the belly, and low energy appear, among other discomforts. Therefore, if at this stage, you can’t continue, consult with your doctor.

Working while pregnant: The do’s

Here’s a list of tips to help you feel as good as possible at work so you don’t have to stop working:

  • Physical exercise. That way, you can stay healthy and active. Walking is very good for your joints and circulation. You can also do yoga or water aerobics for pregnant women.
  • Maintain a correct posture to avoid back pain, especially if you work in front of a computer or in an office.
  • Maintain a healthy and balanced diet both at work and at home. You should eat every 2 or 3 hours.
  • Rest and sleep the number of hours that you need during your free time.
  • Carry an antacid or analgesic recommended by your doctor in case you feel nauseous.
  • Avoid tight, constricting clothing. It’s best to wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothing. Shoes should be slip-resistant and low-heeled to help you avoid falls.
  • Use correct breathing to relax your body and mind.
  • Take short breaks from time to time so that your legs move and don’t swell. You can do this every 15 minutes.
  • Don’t push yourself too hard with household chores. If there are things you can’t do, you can ask someone else to help you.

Working while pregnant: The don’ts

A pregnant woman feeling fatigued at work.
Deciding to stop working while pregnant will depend on how you feel and what your doctor recommends. If you prefer to continue, you should avoid taking risks for yourself and the baby.

In addition to everything you should do to be able to work during pregnancy, there are also a number of things you should avoid:

  • Comparing your pregnancy with others. Only the pregnant woman herself knows whether or not she can work. Everyone can have a pregnancy that’s totally different from that of another.
  • Working with toxic or harmful substances.
  • Climbing stairs and making great efforts.
  • Carrying or lifting heavy objects.
  • Being in places with a lot of noise.
  • Being under extreme temperatures.
  • Working with large machines that produce strong vibrations.
  • Having stress at work. If you’re stressed, it’s best to stop working, as it affects you and your baby.
  • Being exposed to different diseases, whether you work in the health care field for people or animals.

Working throughout your pregnancy. It’s up to you!

Whether or not to work throughout your pregnancy is a matter for you to decide. It’s very important that you take into account the type of work you do in order to make this decision. For example, working in an office sitting down is very different from working in a hospital, in a warehouse, or moving materials from one place to another.

It’s always advisable to talk to your gynecologist or midwife and follow their recommendations. Don’t take unnecessary risks and take good care of yourself.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Sierra Hernáiz, E. (2016). Prevención de riesgos laborales, embarazo de la trabajadora y lactancia natural. Aranzadi Thomson Reuters. Cizur Menor.
  • Valencia, M. H. (2011). Tendencias de la reproducción femenina y riesgos asociados con el embarazo. Revista Mexicana de Medicina de la Reproducción, 3(3), 101-104.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.