All Your Pregnancy Questions, Answered
Is it true that certain sex positions give you a boy or a girl?
I wish I could say there was some magic position that yields a boy or girl. The fact is, it’s the luck of the draw. Semen contains millions of sperm—half with an X chromosome, half with a Y chromosome. Whether you’ll have a bouncing boy or a giddy girl in nine months is determined by which sperm (X or Y) reaches the egg and fertilizes it first.
Countless studies have looked for a relationship between sex positions and gender and come up empty. (Same goes for methods of timing sex around specific days in your cycle.) So no need to twist yourself into a pretzel... unless you want to, of course!
Why do innie belly buttons pop out during pregnancy, but not weight gain?
The growing fetus, uterus, and buildup of amniotic fluids cause the abdomen to expand rapidly during pregnancy. So much pressure so fast stretches the skin and ultimately turns an “innie” navel into an "outie." During normal weight gain, the stretching is much more gradual, so there’s no intense, outward push on the abdomen. If your transformed belly button alarms you, don’t worry: It should become an innie again in a few months postdelivery. On the off-chance that it doesn’t (this happens infrequently), minor plastic surgery could restore innie status.
Can I become pregnant while pregnant?
Yes, but it's extremely uncommon. When you get pregnant, your cervix should seal itself with a mucus plug. You also should stop ovulating, or producing eggs.
That means you can have sex without conceiving another baby. In rare cases, though, that's not how it works.
Some women may make two eggs instead of one, or (even rarer) may ovulate up to a few weeks after they've become pregnant. If the mucus plug doesn't form, you could conceive twice.
Finally, it's possible to have two wombs, each of which could hold babies conceived separately. Still, it's so incredibly unlikely that you don't have to worry about making the news any time soon.
My friend wants us to breast-feed each other's baby? Is that even safe?
Breastfeeding is an incredibly special bonding experience between you and your baby. Why would you want to share that with anyone else besides your little one?
Plus, swapping boobs might confuse him. He is used to you—your smell, your voice, your shape and size, and even the taste of your nipple. He may not want to suck from another breast; if he does try it, he may not want to go back to yours.
Also, many drugs, both legal and illegal, alcohol, and some infectious diseases (like HIV and TB) can be passed through breast milk to your baby.
I personally would not trust anyone else to feed my baby. Especially a friend who would make a suggestion like this—she sounds nutty!
I just had a baby, and now I'm really gassy. What’s wrong?
All that gas is a side effect of weakened muscles and nerves in your pelvis and rectum, which makes it harder to control gas. Believe it or not, you were probably just as gassy before the baby, but it’s much more noticeable now because you can’t keep it in. Lucky you.
Controlling the gas should get easier as your muscles naturally strengthen again. Kegel exercises may be a big help. While sitting, imagine that you are trying to stop your urine flow; hold for 10 seconds, and relax for 10 seconds. Repeat 10 to 15 times, three times a day. You may also want to eat fewer gassy foods like beans, cabbage, and onions, and drink less soda, at least in the short term.
I'm pregnant. Why are my feet getting bigger?
As you've discovered, your belly isn't the only thing expanding during your pregnancy. A pregnant body produces the hormone relaxin, which causes your pelvic ligaments and joints to loosen to make room for the baby's exit. That same hormone also relaxes the ligaments in your feet, allowing the bones to separate a bit.
This, coupled with the fact that your increased weight puts more pressure on your foot arches, causing them to fall a bit, makes your feet grow.
On average, you'll go up half a shoe size. Plus, our feet tend to swell from retained fluids. Any change in size from fluid retention will disappear about a month post-delivery, but your new shoe size is here to stay.
So don't celebrate getting preggo with a new pair of stilettos-you may need a bigger size in nine months.
Does eating Mexican food around your due date really bring on labor?
Although I have friends who swear this is true, there is no medical evidence to support their stories. By the time that due date finally arrives, most women are so uncomfortable and desperate to go into labor they'll try anything-even an urban myth like eating spicy Mexican food. What makes these urban myths so compelling is we all know someone who tried it and then—surprise!—went into labor. But think about who tries these bring-on the-baby tricks: Women who are at or past their due date! So they might have still gone into labor if they'd had Chinese food, or even broiled chicken, instead of chimichangas.
The truth is, there is no way to rush the process. Babies come out when they decide it's time. So eat all the Mexican food you want. You may not get a baby at the end of the night, but enjoying some chips and salsa should take your mind off your burning desire to get that kid out of you already!