Are You Craving The Smell Of Air Conditioning While Pregnant?

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Updated May 19, 2022

Are you Craving the smell of air conditioning while pregnant?

Summertime is a great time to be pregnant.

The weather is warm and you can go outside and enjoy the sun.

However, there is one thing that many pregnant women find themselves craving in the summertime – the smell of air conditioning.

 

 

Air conditioning smells good to many people, but is it safe for pregnant women to sniff?

We asked our OB/GYN Doug Penta, MD and he said it can be dangerous to sniff the air coming out of your air conditioner if there are leaks or if the filters are not cleaned and disinfected. 

While the risk of a modern air conditioner leaking is low, it is still best to not sniff air conditioning while pregnant.

In this article, we will discuss the risks associated with craving the smell of air conditioning during pregnancy and provide some safe substitutes that you can sniff instead!

 

Craving the smell of air conditioning while pregnant – what does it mean?

Pregnancy cravings are normal and not all of them are cravings for food.

Most of us are familiar with pregnancy cravings for foods like pizza,

Non-food items like the smell or taste of non-food items can be concerning for pregnant women as well – especially when it’s something that might harm you physically (examples include chemicals, gasoline, sharpies, and paint).

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II is important if you are having cravings for non-food items l that you discuss with a healthcare provider.

Some cravings can indicate a pregnancy complication called iron deficiency anemia.

When you are craving to sniff certain smells during pregnancy with no desire to ingest the item that is called Desiderosmia.

Desiderosmia can be associated with iron-deficiency anemia in pregnancy but it isn’t always and even if it is once you start on iron supplements from your doctor or midwife your cravings will stop.

This is why it is important to let your healthcare provider know if you develop the desire to sniff non-food items during pregnancy.

-Dr Doug Penta, MD, OB/GYN

Iron deficiency anemia is not always the cause of non-food cravings like wanting to smell air conditioning.

Iron deficiency anemia is one possible cause of sniffing-related cravings during pregnancy.

Another possibility is that it’s caused by the hormone fluctuations that occur in pregnancy.

Hormonal changes during pregnancy are associated with many strange and annoying issues including morning sickness, changes in skin color, acne, fatigue, and muscle and joint pain to name a few.

Another theory is that the craving for air conditioning is actually a way of satisfying your body’s need for certain minerals and nutrients.

 

What is iron-deficiency anemia in pregnancy?

Though there are many causes of anemia, for women, the most common cause is iron deficiency anemia.

This type of anemia is often related to having heavy menses.

Women with heavy menstrual blood loss may not be aware they are anemic.

The first time many women will learn they have anemia is when their blood count is checked at their first prenatal visit.

Symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia can include fatigue, exhaustion, shortness of breath, and olfactory cravings.

These symptoms usually subside once you are treated with an iron supplement.

It is critical to get your anemia diagnosed and treated quickly because it directly affects the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood to the fetus.

 

What is PICA during pregnancy?

PICA is a disorder that causes craving and consumption of non-food items.

PICA can occur in pregnancy and is more common in pregnant women who have iron deficiencies.

Pica occurs in up to 40% of pregnant women in the United States and that could be an underestimated number.

While the exact cause of PICA is unknown, it is thought to be related to changes in hormonal levels during pregnancy or a deficiency in micronutrients

The most commonly craved items include dirt, clay, ice, and chalk.

But some pregnant women crave wood, wood shavings, ash, corn starch, coffee grounds, and paint chips.

While eating these items may not always be harmful to the mother, they can pose a risk to the developing baby.

Ingesting nonfood items can lead to gastrointestinal blockages or perforations, and may also increase the risk of infection, birth defects, or low birth weight.

If you think you may have PICA, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider.

They can help to rule out other causes of cravings and can provide guidance on how to safely satisfy your cravings.

 

So, what are the risks associated with craving the smell of air conditioning while pregnant?

The air that comes out of air conditioning units is considered safe and non-toxic aslobg as the unit is operating properly.

If there are any cracks in the system, the refrigerant running through the pipes can leak into the air.

The refrigerant is harmful to both you and your unborn baby.

In addition, the cool air from the air conditioner can cause you to feel dizzy or lightheaded, which is not ideal when you are pregnant.

This is a craving you’ll want to break.

it is potentially very unsafe and while leaking refrigerant does have an “odor” it could the sweet smelling leaking refrigerant you are drawn too.

 

What are some safe substitutes that you can sniff instead of air conditioning?

We have a few suggestions for safe substitutes that you can sniff.

One option is to sniff essential oils.

There are many different essential oils that have a variety of benefits, and they can be used to help you relax or feel refreshed.

Another option is to sniff lemon or lime slices.

These fruits have a refreshing scent that can help to combat the craving for air conditioning.

Finally, you can try sniffing lavender.

Lavender has a calming effect, which can be helpful if you are feeling anxious or stressed about your pregnancy.

It can be very hard to stop or deny your cravings, so be gentle on yourself if you struggle to break the habit.

Many pregnant women with olfactory cravings during pregnancy find it difficult to stop.

 

Why do I like weird smells while pregnant?

One of the many mysteries of pregnancy is why some women develop strange cravings for certain smells.

While the jury is still out on the science behind this phenomenon, there are a few theories that may offer an explanation.

One possibility is that these strange smells help to satisfy a pregnant woman’s nutritional needs.

Pregnancy can cause deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals, and these cravings might be the body’s way of trying to correct those imbalances.

Another theory is that these cravings are the result of hormonal changes.

As pregnancy progresses, levels of estrogen and progesterone fluctuate, which can affect a woman’s sense of smell.

Finally, it’s also possible that these cravings are simply a matter of psychology.

Pregnancy can be a stressful time, and the act of smelling something pleasant might help to calm and relax an anxious mom-to-be.

Whatever the reason, pregnancy cravings are just one more example of the amazing changes that occur during this special time.

 

Is air conditioning good for pregnancy?

For pregnant women, air conditioning can be a godsend during the hot summer months.

Not only does it help to keep them cool and comfortable, but it also reduces the risk of heatstroke and other heat-related complications.

In addition, air conditioning can help to control indoor allergens, which can be especially helpful for women who suffer from asthma or allergies.

Of course, there are a few things to keep in mind when using air conditioning during pregnancy.

First, it is important to make sure that the room is not too cold.

Second, Women should drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.

Third, It is a good idea to avoid sitting or standing in front of the air conditioner for extended periods of time.

By following these simple guidelines, pregnant women can safely enjoy the benefits of air conditioning.

 

 

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, it is not safe to crave the smell of air conditioning while pregnant and to act on those cravings.

You should let your healthcare provider know about your craving so you can be checked for irin defiency anemia in pregnancy.

If you find it hard to stop this craving, there are many safe substitutes that you can sniff instead. essential oils, lemon or lime slices, and lavender are all great options that can help you combat the craving for air conditioning.