Worried about falling or tripping now that you're pregnant? You're not alone. Find out how to avoid accidents -- and what to expect if something does happen.


Q. What if I fall or am injured?

A. When it comes to accidents, you've got two strikes against you when you're pregnant: First, as your center of gravity shifts, you have less sense of balance and become less coordinated. Second, hormonal changes relax your ligaments, making them vulnerable to injury.

Use extra caution to make up for what you lack in grace. Ask for help when walking on ice or other slippery surfaces. Avoid high heels, clogs, mules, and any other shoes that compromise your stability. Take your time walking down stairs, getting out of the bathtub, and leaning over in the shower to shave your legs. Stay off ladders.

If you're injured, inform emergency health care providers that you're pregnant. If you cut yourself or get a puncture wound and haven't had a tetanus booster within the past 10 years, get one: Infection with the tetanus bacteria can be fatal to both mother and baby. Tetanus booster shots are safe during your pregnancy.

Originally published in You & Your Baby: Pregnancy.

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