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Diving And Pregnancy: Is It Possible?

September 11, 2017 3 min read

Women often find it difficult to give up their hobby of scuba diving, ignoring the fact that they are pregnant. But, isn’t it possible to dive during pregnancy? Well, this topic has been much debated about followed by certain experiments being carried out. Mostly, these experiments were conducted on animals and not humans for the obvious ethical reasons. But, the conclusion of the animal experiments could not provide a valid proof whether scuba diving can lead to termination of the pregnancy or not.

Well, if you or any of your loved one is pregnant, but still wants to enjoy scuba diving, referring to the following information would be handy for her:

Reasons why doctors recommend not to scuba dive during pregnancy

Even though, none of the studies has confirmed that scuba diving during pregnancy can take a toll on the foetus, doctors still refrain from advising women to take up their passion during this period due to these three main reasons:

1. Keep the pangs of Decompression illness out

The foetus breathes through the oxygen from the placenta and if any gas bubbles form during scuba diving, complications may arise. This takes place as the foetus’s lungs will not be able to filter out the air bubbles created underwater. Since, it can reach any vital organ, several complications may develop.

2. Tight diving gear may affect woman’s body

The other important reason that can be cited over here is the amount of fat gets deposited in the woman’s body during pregnancy. Wearing a tight diving gear and going 23 m deep under water can subject the pregnancy at risk.

3. Psychological roots

Since, not much studies have been conducted on this issue, there is no specific conclusion to prove that scuba diving can be harmful for a pregnancy, so, most of the doctors cite psychological roots to the entire issue. If a woman experiences a miscarriage underwater, she will continue blaming herself for undertaking diving. Due to these psychological roots, doctors do not recommend scuba diving to pregnant women.

Reason stated by the studies

A survey was conducted by Undersea Biomedical Research Journalin 1980 to examine this issue. They studied two types of women, the first group was the one which dived during pregnancy and the second group who did not. Diving led to birth defects and miscarriage of the women pregnant divers, whereas the women who did not take up the sports activity had no complications. But, there is no concrete evidence till date to prove that this was a result of scuba diving.

If you are pregnant and still wish to go for scuba diving, it could be quite risky.

Benefits of diving during pregnancy

However, there are a few advantages of scuba diving during pregnancy. Read below to explore the same:

  • Going underwater for sometime can act as a temporary relief from the aches of pregnancy.
  • Happiness of mother creates a positive impact on her foetus. If the mother is happy while undertaking her favourite water sport, the body will release endorphins of a positive nature, which will be good for the unborn child.
  • Feeling weightless during pregnancy is a common dream of every pregnant woman. But, the feeling of weightlessness can be experienced underwater only during scuba diving.

Even though, there are several advantages involved in diving during pregnancy, there are risks as well. So, what is the solution?

Go Snorkeling after seeking doctor’s consultation

Of course, you don't have to give up on your underwater passion! The best thing you can do is to avoid scuba diving at a great depth and breathing compressed air. But, you can still have the underwater experience by doing snorkeling and swimming.

You need to be cautious before taking any action  during pregnancy. It is advisable to buy/rent only a good quality diving gear and lastly, it is worth mentioning that you should have a firm belief on diving experts further letting them help you with snorkeling!

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