Working: Is a long commute dangerous when pregnant?

I am trying to conceive. Five days a week I commute 90 miles each way to attend law school. Will this long commute be dangerous during pregnancy?

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Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

Many women successfully manage a very active lifestyle durng pregnancy with no difficulty. I feel it depends on the degree of stress, your health status and risk factors during the pregnancy, your personality and attitudes and the amount of support you get from your partner.

Some questions you may want to ask yourself: Could you join a car pool for at least a part of the journey? If a pregnancy complication arises, will you be able to slow down? Is there anything in your personal medical history that might put you in a high-risk category for preterm labor or pregnancy complications?

Recent research has shown that stress can impact pregnancy outcome. If your lifestyle allows time for relaxation and time with those who are important and supportive in your life, then the risk of adverse effects would probably be low. On the other hand, if you are "driven" to accomplish at the expense of your personal and social time, then the risk of complicaitons such as miscarriage, preterm labor, low birth weight, toxemia, etc. would be greater.

The commute itself can be made more pleasant with company, tapes, music and dinner waiting when you get home. You can even do isometric exercises in the car. Long periods of sitting gets more difficult the farther you get into pregnancy. Your bladder will probably demand frequent rest stops, so be sure to stop and take regular breaks.

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