Can You Use A Hot Tub When Pregnant?

Unlike strawberries and cream, pregnancy and hot tubs are not something you should match together. Although hot tubs can provide tremendous health benefits, they should be used with extreme caution when pregnant. 

In this article, the team at H2O Hot Tubs will go over whether you can use a hot tub when you’re expecting, why it could potentially be unsafe depending on the trimester and the water temperature and discuss some frequently asked questions surrounding using a hot tub when pregnant. 

Is it Safe to Use a Hot Tub When Pregnant?

First, some basic facts. Sitting in water with a temperature above 40°C (104°F) for a long period of time can cause your core body temperature to rise to an unsafe degree. A rise in your body’s temperature is particularly dangerous during your first trimester (that's the first 12 weeks of pregnancy). 

According to the NHS, it is ‘advisable to avoid [hot tubs] because you risk overheating, becoming dehydrated, or fainting’. Therefore, hot tubs should be used with extreme caution or avoided entirely during pregnancy. But that's not necessarily the end of the story.


Hot Tub


Why it’s Unsafe to Use a Hot Tub During Pregnancy

Hot Tub Temperature and Pregnancy 

It’s best to avoid hot tubs and swim spas during pregnancy as your body temperature shouldn’t exceed 39°C (102.2°F) during your carrying term. Spending just 10 minutes in a hot tub set to 40°C can raise your body temperature above this threshold and is, therefore, dangerous. Although even lower hot tub temperatures can be hazardous, so it’s best to avoid hot tubs when pregnant. 

Hot Tub Bacteria and Pregnancy  

Another reason to avoid hot tubs during pregnancy is the germs. Harmful bacteria love the warm conditions and moisture of a hot tub, and they can breed rapidly if your hot tub’s chemicals are out of harmony. 

You can use an at-home chemical test kit and disinfectants to ensure your hot tub is optimal for use when you are not pregnant or when using a hot tub with extreme caution when pregnant.  

pregnant woman

How To Use a Hot Tub During Pregnancy 

As mentioned, we do not recommend using a hot tub during pregnancy, particularly during your first 12 weeks. However, if you are in your second or third trimester, you may use a hot tub for a minimal time after consulting with your GP and confirming whether this is safe for you. 

On top of your doctor's advice, here are our recommendations for anyone past week 12 of their pregnancy using a hot tub:

• Ensure the hot tub temperature is no higher than 32°C (89.6°F). Use a thermometer to measure your hot tub’s temperature accurately. 

• Do not exceed 10 minutes in the hot tub per session (ideally not more than once per day). 

• Sit furthest away from hot jets of water. 

• If you feel hot or sweaty, remove yourself from the hot tub immediately and use cold towels to cool down. 

• Avoid putting your upper torso, arms, shoulders and head in the water. 

• Do not use a hot tub if your temperature is already above normal (37°C is considered a normal temperature for adults, and anything over 37.8°C is considered a fever). 


woman in hot tub

Alternatives to Going in a Hot Tub When Pregnant

We realise a slightly warm bath doesn’t sound as appealing as a bubbling hot and steamy hot tub, but this option is far safer when you are pregnant and can still allow you some of the soothing benefits of warm water. 

You may also wish to soak your feet for 10 minutes or go for a relaxing prenatal massage to gain some of the health benefits of using a hot tub, such as stress relief and improved sleep. 

However, you still need to bathe or soak your feet with cation by avoiding hot water and limiting the time you spend in the bath. It’s also wise to drink plenty of water and cool yourself off quickly after a bath.  


What temperature can you go in a hot tub when pregnant? 

If you are choosing to use a hot tub when pregnant, ensure the water does not exceed 32°C

Can I put my feet in a hot tub during pregnancy? 

After your first trimester, you may wish to dip your feet into warm water. Nevertheless, you should exercise caution and limit exposure to warm water on your body to 10 minute periods. 

Can you go in a hot tub at 4 weeks pregnant?

We do not recommend anyone between weeks 0-12 of their pregnancy use a hot tub. 

How long can you go in a hot tub when pregnant?

If you have spoken to your doctor and taken the necessary precautions to reduce your risk when using a hot tub, such as keeping the hot tub clean and disinfected and reducing the water temperature, you should not stay in the hot tub for longer than 10 minutes per session.

Allow yourself to cool off completely before a new session, or limit yourself to 10 minutes per day. 

What happens if you go in a hot tub while pregnant? 

There are several risk factors associated with using a hot tub during pregnancy. 

You risk raising your body temperature and overheating. This could lead to fainting and reduced blood flow to your vital organs and the baby. As a pregnant person, you are already at a greater risk of fainting due to hormone fluctuations. 

Your body could experience fever-like symptoms if its temperature goes above 37.8°C (100°F). Some research shows fever in early pregnancy can cause developmental problems in babies, while other studies show an indication of a greater chance of miscarriage. Although these papers confirm that more research is needed to confirm these findings, it is best to exercise caution and avoid hot tubs when pregnant, as the adverse side effects could be life-altering for your baby. 

Can I still have a bath when pregnant? 

You can use a mildly warm bath when pregnant for a limited time. Although baths are generally not recommended when you are pregnant, the NHS recommend you can exercise in water at 32°C. And at risk of sounding like a broken record, it’s always best to consult your doctor before taking a warm bath. 



Lounging in a hot tub can be an enjoyable and therapeutic pastime, but the risks of using one when pregnant mean this luxurious experience could be far from relaxing. 

If you are pregnant, please speak to your doctor about the safety of using a hot time when pregnant and ensure to follow their advice. Although you may be craving a dip in the tub, there are plenty of relaxing things you can do this summer before your little one arrives, and may we refer back to the strawberries and cream reference from the start of this post! Just make sure you choose a pasteurised cream when pregnant, but that is a topic for another time. 





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