A survey in Britain of mothers and pregnant women has revealed an astonishing level of confusion and perplexity about being pregnant.
The survey by the baby charity Tommy's, has revealed so much confusion that it has prompted the launching of a campaign, 'Let's Talk Baby' to help women overcome their worries and concerns.
According to the survey pregnant women are confused about what food to eat, whether it is safe to have sex, drink alcohol or get on a plane during pregnancy.
The survey also revealed that pregnant women experience a range of potentially embarrassing health concerns, but find it hard to talk to anyone about their problems.
The survey of 1,303 mothers and pregnant women found that 42% had experienced memory loss, 41% had suffered bladder weakness, 40% had experienced mood swings, 34% constipation, 32% pregnancy-related wind, 25% random breast leakage, 21% increased body hair and 14% excessive sweating. A total of 13% had developed acne during pregnancy, 12% had had stronger body odour than normal and 9% had suffered hair loss.
The survey also found that 45% of women had received conflicting advice about pregnancy and 40% were confused about what foods were safe to eat, 29% were unsure if they could dye their hair, 31% did not know which prescription drugs were safe to take and 22% were unaware of safe exercises.
A total of 15% were confused by how much alcohol, if any, they could drink while pregnant, 15% did not know if it was safe to fly and 7% were unsure about sex in pregnancy.
Even more of a concern, 1 in 20 women did not understand why they needed to take folic acid in the first 12 weeks, which protects against spinal defects in the foetus, and 34% of women felt embarrassed by elements of their pregnancy.
The researchers say it is clear women are confused by the conflicting information they receive about pregnancy.
Tommy's says being pregnant is one of the biggest changes the body goes through some of which are unexpected and it is important that women are paying attention to these changes, as they can provide vital early warning signs if something is wrong.