There are rumors spread far and wide through emails and often, you don’t know if they are true or not! OB/GYN Dr. Thais Aliabadi joins The Doctors to discuss three sexual health-related emails your mom may have forwarded you!
The first email says you could make a DIY pregnancy test by just adding bleach to a cup of urine. If your urine foams, that means you’re pregnant. Put the bleach away, Dr. Aliabadi says this is not true! She even created her own experiment by using the urine of her pregnant patients, as well as a control sample of non-pregnant patients. She separated the pregnant patients out by trimester, but no matter what, there was no reaction when she added bleach to any of the samples.
If you are pregnant and looking to induce labor, can a foot massage help? This email The Doctors read contains a very common pregnancy myth, but this too is incorrect! Dr. Aliabadi says she hears this rumor all the time yet it’s not true. The belief is the pressure points in your foot supposedly increases the flow of blood to your uterus, but she doesn’t buy it. When she was pregnant, she got a foot massage every week and she still had to be induced with medication.
ER physician Dr. Travis Stork asks if anything can be done to induce labor and Dr. Aliabadi has one possible solution, but it must be done in the doctor’s office. In a vaginal exam at around 39-40 weeks the doctors can separate the membrane between the amniotic sack and the cervix, and stripping that membrane can supposedly release prostaglandins which can put patients into labor.
The last email The Doctors read warns people of taking foods and supplements with activated charcoal in them saying it can interfere with how well birth control works. This one, however, you may want to listen to. Dr. Aliabadi says this would make sense since activated charcoal is a natural treatment used to trap toxins and chemicals in our bodies and then flush them out. If taken with medication, it makes sense that it would probably affect their absorption.
If you are someone who regularly consumes activated charcoal and takes birth control pills, Dr. Aliabadi recommends using another form of birth control as a backup. Dermatologist Dr. Sonia Batra adds to stagger your medications within two hours of taking the charcoal just to be extra cautious.