Unless you’ve sworn off Facebook the past few weeks, you’ve probably seen quite a few videos of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Celebs like Britney Spears, Kerry Washington, and Hayden Panettiere (who confirmed her pregnancy in her video!) have drenched themselves in freezing water to raise awareness of the disease.
But when we saw Zoe Saldana opt out of the getting-drenched-in-cold-water part in the name of her baby bump (see her video, below), we had to ask, is it safe for pregnant women to take on the Ice Bucket Challenge?
The short answer: Yes. “Pouring cold water over your head is perfectly safe in pregnancy,” says Julie Chor, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Chicago. The only risk, she says, is the possibility of slipping on ice, so watch your step, and be careful not to drop a heavy bucket on your belly. (Ask a friend to help you out.) Other than that, “cold water in and of itself is A-OK, as long as you take safety precautions,” says Dr. Chor. But hey, there's no shame in the Saldana approach, either.