A study released in the May 2014 issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal reported that pregnant women are more susceptible to car accidents. Particularly, women in their second trimester of pregnancy are approximately 42 percent more at risk for being involved in a traffic accident than they were prior to pregnancy.
Researchers speculate that the increase risk might be related to women letting their guard down during the second trimester. This might be related to related stress, insomnia, back pain and fatigue they experience during this time.
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Tips for Safe Driving for Pregnant Women
Just because you’re pregnant, doesn’t mean you have to resort to staying home all the time. You can take a few simple steps to minimize risk until the baby comes.
Moms-to-be can try the following tips to stay safe on the road.
- Always wear a seat belt, particularly a three-point seat belt. Position the lap belt low on your stomach and the shoulder belt over your sternum.
- Leave the airbags on. Some pregnant women assume the airbag, if deployed, will harm the baby, but this isn’t necessarily so. Risk of injury does increase if you’re sitting too close to the airbag, so the recommended advice is to position your seat as far back as comfortably possible and leave the airbag enabled.
- Leave ample clearance between your stomach and the steering wheel, and tilt the wheel to create more space.
- Don’t drive in hazardous conditions.
- Don’t drive distractedly, e.g., no cell phones while driving or putting on make-up.
- Ride as a passenger rather than a driver during your pregnancy whenever possible.
Getting the Support You Need During Your Pregnancy
It’s important to get the support you need while you’re pregnant not only to promote a safe, healthy pregnancy, but also your emotional and mental wellbeing.
“The transition through pregnancy to parenthood is a time when social supports are associated with a woman’s ability to cope,” explains the Creating Circles of Support Advisory Committee. Social support has been associated with health and avoidance of disease in research studies since the 1970s…and is associated with positive self-evaluation of parenting skills and lower stress levels.”
You might find the support you need through the following channels.
- Asking friends or family to help with transportation if you don’t feel up to driving.
- Talking to your partner or others you trust for emotional support.
- Participating in a parenting support group for info and peer support.
- Talking to your doctor or a therapist about any concerns you have along the way.
Call Preszler Law for Legal Help in Ontario
If you have any legal questions or concerns following a traffic accident, feel free to call our personal injury attorneys at Preszler Law in Ontario. Contact us today at 800-JUSTICE® for a free, no-obligation consultation.