Is it possible for pregnant women to go to the bathhouse or sauna and take a steam bath – all the pros and cons

Is it possible for pregnant women to go to the bathhouse or sauna and take a steam bath - all the pros and consIs it possible for pregnant women to visit the bathhouse and sauna, what do the doctors say? Undoubtedly, the Russian SPA is very popular among women, as an excellent tool for relaxation, toning, strengthening the immune system, as well as for losing weight. But are bath procedures and a steam room harmful during pregnancy?

Today we will take a closer look at this issue.

The content of the article:

  1. The benefits of baths and saunas
  2. It’s all about timing
  3. Contraindications and warnings
  4. Bath procedures rules
  5. Which bath to choose
  6. Bath alternatives

The benefits of baths and saunas during pregnancy

If we talk about the benefits of this pleasant pastime in general, then each of us will note the undoubted advantages for improving well-being, raising mood and getting rid of negative thoughts.

And what are the advantages and benefits for a pregnant woman?

  1. A visit to the “Russian SPA” normalizes hormonal levels, which often get out of control during pregnancy. As a result, the expectant mother’s sleep and appetite are normalized, toxic effects disappear, mood improves, tearfulness, mood swings and fears are eliminated.
  2. As you know, the effect on the body of steam and high temperature of the environment enhances blood circulation and metabolic processes in tissues. In the people – “disperses the blood.” A pregnant woman gets rid of edema, and also actively supplies the baby with oxygen.
  3. The steam room helps to relieve pain in the joints and spine.
  4. Heat and steam effectively affect the skin and muscles, making them more elastic – this is very beneficial for the upcoming childbirth and serves as an excellent prevention of stretch marks.
  5. During bath procedures, the blood better supplies the breast of the expectant mother, and this better prepares her for sufficient milk production and expands the milk passages. Milk stagnation can be avoided by regularly visiting the bathhouse.

Rules for visiting the bath and sauna of a pregnant woman

Bath or sauna in early and late pregnancy

During the entire 1 trimester – that is, up to 12 weeks inclusive – doctors categorically do not recommend visiting steam rooms. This is due to the high risks of abortion or freezing of pregnancy, as well as to the increased vulnerability of the fetus, in which all organs and systems are laid.

In late pregnancy, hot procedures are allowed against the background of the absolute health of the expectant mother, but only until 39-42 weeks of pregnancy.

Bath and sauna during pregnancy - indications and contraindications

The harm of baths, saunas during pregnancy – important warnings and contraindications!

First, let’s designate the categories of expectant mothers who go to the bathhouse or sauna – alas! – closed.

In addition to general contraindications that apply to everyone – such as fever, illness, infections, inflammatory processes in the body, high blood pressure, pustules and skin ulceration, pregnant women have their own list of contraindications.

Categorical contraindications for visiting the steam room and heat treatments:

  • Placenta previa, all pathologies of the location and development of the placenta.
  • Low water.
  • Pathology of the cervix with its premature disclosure.
  • The state of hypertonicity of the uterus.
  • Multiple pregnancy.
  • Hypertension of pregnant women, as well as hypotension with frequent fainting.
  • Complicated eye pathologies with the threat of retinal detachment.
  • Early and late pregnancy.

Everyone knows that the steam room and heat treatments can harm a healthy body, if used incorrectly. Therefore, expectant mothers need to familiarize themselves with the important rules for visiting baths and saunas – and strictly follow them.

Is it possible to have a bath and a sauna during pregnancy - for and against

Bath procedures for pregnant women

The first and immutable rule that no pregnant woman should ignore is consultation with your attending physician and strict adherence to his recommendations!

  1. Never go to the steam room alone!
  2. Ensure your safety and comfort – put on slates with non-slip soles, prepare enough cool drinking water or warm tea. Bring a spacious bath towel or sheet you can quickly wrap yourself in, loose-fitting clothing so that dressing is not inconvenient. Place a bowl of cool water in the foot bath – it will come in handy when you leave the steam room. Take a towel to the steam room to sit down and lie down on a non-bare shelf.
  3. The bath or sauna should be visited no more than 1 time per week. At each visit to the attending physician, you should consult about bath procedures, finding out if there are any contraindications for them.
  4. Do not go into the steam room or sauna right away – sit in the dressing room, get used to the temperature. By the way, at the same time you can drink tea, listen to music and arrange yourself an aromatherapy session.
  5. Do not apply creams or oils to your face and body before the steam room. In the bath, the skin should begin to “work”, pushing out excess water through the pores. By the way, it is undesirable to wet the skin with just water – the stratum corneum should be steamed out under the influence of the heat already in the steam room, without interfering with the separation of sweat.
  6. Put a felt sweating hat on your head – this will help you to adapt better and feel good at high temperatures.
  7. No feats! Top shelves are no longer for you. The maximum temperature of the steam room should be 75-80 degrees. The lower shelves are the safest option for pregnant women, where the heat is concentrated in the upper half of the body, leaving the lower half without extreme temperature effects. First, sit with your feet lowered to the floor, then put your feet on the shelves, or better lie down. As a result, the whole body should be in the same temperature regime.
  8. You can use a broom to actively whip your legs from knees to feet, as well as your arms and shoulders. Upper thighs, belly and lower back – rub gently with a broom, like a washcloth, rather than clapping.
  9. By the way, the choice of a broom for a steam room should be taken seriously. Birch and oak brooms will prevent cellulite and even varicose veins of the lower extremities. A broom made of currant or cherry branches will give you a real aromatherapy session and prevent toxicosis. A broom of spruce, pine branches will help to improve blood microcirculation in the limbs and perform a kind of massage.
  10. Refuse splashing water with essential oils or herbal decoctions on the stove – this can cause an allergic reaction. Even if no allergy to these drugs was observed before pregnancy.
  11. Scheme of visiting the steam room or sauna: 3 minutes in each entry, between which there should be at least 15 minutes in the steam room. The time spent in the steam room can be increased to 7 minutes if the woman feels well. But remember that the rest periods in the dressing room between steam room sessions should be 2 times longer.
  12. Constantly replenish water balance organism even in the steam room – drink water and still mineral water, fruit drink, warm tea.
  13. Check your pulse periodically – the indicator should be not more than 120 beats per minute in the maximum value!
  14. Avoid the sudden changes in temperature that can harm you and your baby during pregnancy. Do not dive into a cold water pool after a steam room, do not wipe your body with snow and ice. All you are allowed is to hold your feet in a basin with comfortably cool (not ice-cold!) Water, and also take a shower 2-3 degrees lower than your body temperature – about 32-34 degrees.
  15. After the bath procedure, it is better to lie on a flat surface for 10-15 minutes.


It is worth leaving the steam room immediately if you feel symptoms of discomfort or dizziness, bouts of nausea, pulling pains in the lower abdomen, headache and palpitations!

If the above symptoms do not disappear even in the dressing room, see a doctor immediately!

How to properly visit the bath and sauna during pregnancy

So a bath or sauna during pregnancy, or maybe a hammam is better?

The variety of types of baths and saunas is great – let’s try to determine the best options for visiting a pregnant woman.

  1. Finnish sauna. Dry heat, extreme high temperature in the compartment. During pregnancy, it can exert an undesirable overload on the body. You can only visit women who have previously become accustomed to this type of sauna – of course, in the absence of contraindications and adherence to the correct temperature regime and the recommended visiting algorithm, which we considered in the rules.
  2. Russian sauna. Dry heat can alternate with hot steam, which is not so extreme for the body. It is worth giving preference to an institution where you can track the temperature in the steam room, as well as having a dressing room with a resting place, shower and swimming pool. We remind you that a pool with ice water is contraindicated!
  3. Hamam, or Turkish bath… The most comfortable option for pregnant women is pleasant warmth without extreme exposure, the opportunity to get a relaxing massage of the back and legs, a pool with warm water, perfect for a relaxing swimming of the expectant mother.
  4. Portable sauna for the room: This type of bathing procedure is prohibited during pregnancy.

How to properly visit a pregnant bath or sauna

Alternatives to a bath or a sauna for a pregnant woman – what to replace?

If the expectant mother has categorical contraindications for visiting the bathhouse or sauna, or for some reason she is afraid herself, you can choose an excellent alternative to relaxation for body and soul.


We remind you that each specific procedure may have its own contraindications, therefore, the nuances should be discussed with the attending physician – and his further recommendations should be followed!

  1. If you want to visit a bathhouse or sauna with swimming pool with water of comfortable temperature (33-36 degrees) – it is worth replacing the sessions in the steam room with swimming sessions. Pleasure is not less, but even more benefits!
  2. If you can’t go to the bathhouse – pay attention to massage sessions… We agree that the choice of massage methods for a pregnant woman is significantly narrowed, but, nevertheless, you can choose a safe option for yourself. For example, foot and leg massage, shoulder and head massage.
  3. Pleasant warm baths help to relax and relieve stress from the spine. But remember that the maximum allowed water temperature is 40 degrees, and the bath time is 15 minutes.
  4. If you yearn for steam sessions, but can’t – arrange yourself steam bath … for the face! The device for steaming the skin of the face will eliminate skin problems, tighten it – and give the familiar relaxation to the whole body!
  5. Cold and hot shower – an excellent and useful alternative to bath procedures during pregnancy. Just don’t go to extreme temperature changes. By the way, when dousing only legs to knees, you can just alternate between higher and lower water temperatures than on the body.

How to replace a bath for a pregnant woman - the best alternatives


By visiting a bath or sauna during pregnancy, you accept responsibility for all the risks associated with these procedures – especially if you have not received a doctor’s approval.

Take our warnings seriously, make informed decisions and carefully assess your health! And, of course, do not neglect the advice and recommendations of a specialist!

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