Women who are pregnant or may become pregnant can take several steps to have a healthy pregnancy and birth including:
- Stop smoking and avoid secondhand smoke
- Do not use alcohol or illegal drugs
- Visit your doctor for screening for infections and treatment
- Get preconception health care and early prenatal health care and follow nutritional and other advice carefully
- Don't work hard or stay outdoors when the Air Quality Index shows unhealthy levels of particulate matter and other air pollutants
- Cut out or reduce any indoor sources of particulate matter, like wood-burning stoves and fireplaces, and try to reduce the amount of time spent outdoors near areas with lots of traffic
- Stay away from lead.
- Stay away from mercury.
- Some fish, especially albacore tuna, may have been contaminated with mercury. State health departments send out public fish consumption guidelines that pregnant women can follow.
- Do not use pesticides (insecticides, herbicides, rodenticides, miticides, and fungicides) if you are pregnant.
- Stay away from rooms that have been recently sprayed with insecticides and from other areas with potential pesticide exposure.
This symbol means you are leaving the CDC.gov Web site. For more information, please see CDC's Exit Notification and Disclaimer policy.
Copyrighted images: Images on this website which are copyrighted were used with permission of the copyright holder and are not in the public domain. CDC has licensed these images for use in the materials provided on this website, and the materials in the form presented on this website may be used without seeking further permission. Any other use of copyrighted images requires permission from the copyright holder.
Tracking Hot Topics
- Birth Defects and the Environment
- Learn the Signs. Act Early.
- Female Breast Cancer and the Environment
- Children's Environmental Health Initiatives
- Tracking Children's Environmental Health
- CDC's Information for Parents
- View our Tracking Success Stories to learn how Tracking is making a difference across the U.S.