Health and Safety Tips for Pregnant Trade Professionals
Women have been taking more active roles and functions in many societies since the turn of the century. Before this period, women had played more conservative roles that revolved majorly around housekeeping and other domestics duties. They were considered weaker beings, unfit for physicality-demanding tasks.
However, with the advancement of the digital age, there’ve been demands from several women advocacy bodies on the need to deploy and incorporate them into more active roles. They’ve been persistently requesting that women get opportunities to take more responsibilities. Thanks to those calls and advocacy, today, women are present in large proportion in virtually all endeavors previously dominated by men. They ply their trades in corporate settings as well as trade professions.
Who are Trade Professionals?
Not everyone relishes sitting behind a computer in a tiny office located in a corporate environment. As a result, many have resorted to making careers out of trade professions, and women are not left out.
Trade professionals are known to play significant roles in the development of a nation’s economy. Without them, there wouldn’t be electrical wiring, plumbing pipe works, automobile repair, and servicing, etc. their expertise and know-how are essential to vital sectors like construction, power, mining- which are instrumental to the sustenance of everyday lives.
Skilled trades aren’t for men only; they feature a good number of women. Over the years, the number of women making careers out of skilled professions like welding, plumbing, HVAC engineering, painting, etc. has increased tremendously. While many of these trades demand a considerable amount of physical strength, women are bossing it out in them.
Health and Safety Tips for Pregnant Professionals
Workplace health and safety is an essential aspect of every profession. It’s a concept that should be taken seriously by every worker and professional. While safety is everybody’s business and responsibility, there’s a category of trade professionals that require extra safety measures. Pregnant trade professionals are in this category.
In averting maternity issues, pregnant women in skilled trades need to safeguard themselves during their pregnancy period. They should avoid any risk or hazard that may negatively affect their health or that of their babies. This article will be discussing health and safety tips pregnant trade professionals will find useful.
Avoid Alcohol Usage
Not taking alcohol at all is one of the safest decisions you can make as a pregnant skilled professional. Drinking alcohol during a pregnancy period puts the fetus at risk as it can lead to the damage of the fetus’ cells, with the brain and spinal cord likely to be the most affected organs. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), which is a known cause of developmental disabilities in infants, is a condition that could arise as a result of alcohol consumption during the pregnancy period.
While the use of alcoholic drinks is not uncommon among trade professionals, you should note that the act’s dangers are way more severe than you can imagine. Common effects of alcohol usage during a pregnancy period include; growth problems, congenital disabilities, feeding challenges in new-borns, learning difficulties in children, behavioral problems, unusual facial features in children, etc.
Go for Regular Check-ups
You need to book regular check-up appointments with your doctor or midwife, no matter how healthy or fine you may be feeling. These visits allow you to talk about pregnancy-related issues on which you may need clarifications. During these visits, you get to ask questions and put your curiosity to bed.
Booking check-up visits with your doctor should start as soon as you find out you’re pregnant. During these visits, you’ll get to choose the type of care you want, the potential visiting hours and frequency, and the tests and scans you would have to take all through the pregnancy period.
Avoid Unhealthy Food Items and Beverages
As a pregnant trade professional, there’re certain food items and drinks you would normally take on regular days in your line of work that you should avoid during your pregnancy period to not put your baby at risk. Food items and drinks in this category include; undercooked meat, foods containing vitamin A, unpasteurized dairy products, oily fish, raw eggs, caffeine, alcohol, etc.
Consuming these and other junk foods, besides their chemical effects, can increase risks of allergies and genetic abnormalities in the baby. So, it’s best to avoid them completely.
Adequate Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
In the early days of her pregnancy, a female trade professional might still decide to be working, provided it isn’t an energy-draining task. However, to do this, adequate workplace safety equipment must be put in place. PPE is equipment capable of protecting against health and safety risks or hazards associated with your work. The use of items such as helmets, flare-resistant gloves, safety footwear, and eye-protection gear is essential to keep baby-carrying trade professionals like welders, electricians, etc. from injuries or unnecessary exposure to unfavorable elements. A quality PPE enables users to move freely and still provides much-needed protection.
Utilization of Quality and Easy-to-Handle Working Tools
To avoid hazards associated with a trade profession like welding, high-quality, and easy-to-use tools are of paramount importance. Essential equipment like MIG welders is ideal for a baby-carrying welding operator in performing gas metal arc welding (which is the most popular welding method). Although MIG welders can get expensive, they’re worth their prices. Welding accessories like electrodes, electrical wires, welding tables or workbenches, angle grinders, pliers, metal files, measuring tools, etc. must be of standard quality to prevent hazards.
Ensure Adequate Ventilation in Workspace
Workspaces for skilled trade activities require adequate ventilation to keep harmful gases and fumes away, so pregnant operators don’t inhale them. Ventilation systems must be put in place in work areas to avoid health issues.
Pregnant skilled professionals should always consult their doctor for guidance, and also take medical pieces of advice seriously. Adherence to medical safety protocols and rules is highly essential to avoid pregnancy-related complications.