6 Hidden Home Hazards During Pregnancy

Is it safe to dye or perm my hair?

You might consider putting your hair-coloring plans on hold for a while. Though there's no proof that the chemicals in hair dyes, permanent wave solutions, or relaxers cause birth defects, miscarriages, or any other pregnancy complications, there are no reliable studies that prove these substances are safe either. Researchers do know that they penetrate the scalp and enter the bloodstream, so theoretically they could reach your growing baby. For this reason, some healthcare providers now recommend that pregnant women avoid such hair treatments, especially during the first trimester when their unborn baby's organs are beginning to develop.

But if you're desperate, choose a process that involves less scalp contact, such as highlights. Vegetable-based dyes, such as henna, are also considered safe. If you're the do-it-yourself type, wear gloves to minimize absorption of hair-product chemicals through your skin, and don't leave the product on any longer than necessary. And whether you're at home or in a salon, make sure the area is well ventilated to avoid breathing in any fumes.

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