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Freediving while pregnant?

Discussion in 'Ask Dr. Decompression' started by KellyAsh, Apr 30, 2012.

  1. KellyAsh

    KellyAsh IDC Staff Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras
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    I know pregnant women shouldn't dive due to pressure issues and the baby but what about freediving? Is there a depth that is safe for a pregnant women to freedive to or is even 2 ATAs too much?
     
  2. DocVikingo

    DocVikingo Senior Member Staff Member

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    Hi Kelly,

    It's the breathing of a compressed gas at depth that is the worry here.

    The depths involved in recreational freediving would appear to pose no major concern as long as the pregnant individual does not sustain any dive-related injuries that have possible consequences for her health and thereby that of the fetus, e.g., pulmonary barotrauma.

    However, before engaging in freediving it would be prudent to contact Divers Alert Network

    Regards,

    DocVikingo

    This is educational only and does not constitute or imply a doctor-patient relationship. It is not medical advice to you or any other individual, and should not be construed as such.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2012
  3. Dr Deco

    Dr Deco Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Issaquah [20 miles east of Seattle], Washington.
    2,384
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    Hello KellyAsh :

    Free diving and Pregnancy

    Congratulations on your pregnancy! [This is from a father of four.] Remember that diving will always be there after your delivery. It is recommended to wait.

    I believe that DAN recommends against this form of diving. Gas loading is probably minimal to 30 fsw, but there are other issues. Should your new baby have some defect, you would wonder through its whole life if your actions caused this; it is a terrible burden to bear.

    Dr Deco :doctor:
     
    flots am likes this.
  4. DocVikingo

    DocVikingo Senior Member Staff Member

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  5. flots am

    flots am Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Wherever you go in life, that's where you are.
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    Considering that you're in the process of producing a new human, who could easily live 80+ years, I wouldn't be in a big hurry to take any additional risks that are purely recreational.

    A lifetime of "what if" really sucks.

    flots.
     
  6. RonFrank

    RonFrank Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Conifer, CO
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    Free diving has some risk factors regardless. People pass out and drown. I have no idea how common this is, but common enough for them to do more research. I think snorkeling would be fine, just do not do much breath hold submersion. 9 months is not long to wait. Take up photography!
     
  7. KellyAsh

    KellyAsh IDC Staff Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras
    109
    16
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    Thanks for the responses. I've flatly stated she will be doing no free diving while pregnant before I posted this question but told her I would ask a doctor about it. You see, she's an addict. She's addicted to compressed air at depth. I think the withdrawals she's experiencing is clouding her judgement. Personally, I think she's huffing my tanks while I'm at school but that's not the issue here. I will show here your responses so she'll stop asking if she can freedive and other questions like, "what if I stay above 20 ft?", and "why not", lol. Thanks againn ya'll.
     
  8. DocVikingo

    DocVikingo Senior Member Staff Member

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    Hey Kelly,Then make sure she doesn't find out that well-known freediver Maria-Teresa Solomons routinely dove while pregnant. On one occasion, she went >50-meters. Ended up with a perfectly healthy baby. It's an individual decision.Regards,DocVikingoThis is educational only and does not constitute or imply a doctor-patient relationship. It is not medical advice to you or any other individual, and should not be construed as such.
     
  9. KellyAsh

    KellyAsh IDC Staff Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras
    109
    16
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    She can freedive vicariously throught his Maria Teresa girl then if she wants to do something. She likes to dream about flying and such so maybe she can dream about freediving and scuba diving until we have the baby.
     
  10. Duke Dive Medicine

    Duke Dive Medicine Scuba Media & Publications

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    If Maria-Teresa Solomons jumped off a bridge...

    But seriously, would it be prudent for a pregnant woman to subject her developing fetus to the hypoxia and hypercapnia encountered in extreme/competitive free diving? It's never been studied in humans, but I'm not sure I'd advise making a guinea pig of an unborn child.

    Best regards,
    DDM
     

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