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People who take old wives tales seriously...

(117 Posts)
lagertops Tue 24-Sep-13 01:32:19

Especially RE pregnancy. Ive been asked a couple of times if ive 'found out' the sex of my baby by doing the ring on a string thing by people with a serious face. Also had a friend tell me that she just couldn't understand why her baby was born without loads of hair as she had really bad heartburn throughout pregnancy...

And today was the icing on the cake. My OHs step-grandmother absolutely demanded that I was in no uncertain terms to buy my babys pram until after he was born. I didnt bother asking why as she talks crap a lot until the third time she had said "Buy the cot, but do not get the baby's pushchair!!" and her reply was simply 'Its an old wives tale.'

Im sorry, but I cant be bothered with superstition to the point where it's affecting my practical choices. I know for most people its a bit of fun, but does anyone actually take this nonsense as gospel?

WillSingForCake Thu 26-Sep-13 19:24:03

I remember reading in the local paper about a woman who'd saluted a magpie whilst on her driving test, and (quite rightly) subsequently failed for not paying due attention to the road!

Mrsmorton Thu 26-Sep-13 19:09:02

But gingivitis (hormone driven) is very different from your child sucking calcium from your teeth. Pregnancy gingivitis is widely recognised as a side effect.

ILetHimKeep20Quid Thu 26-Sep-13 18:45:35

I assumed it was because you are more vulnerable to illness and ailments. Like how you get offered the flu jab

fuckwittery Thu 26-Sep-13 18:31:30

Its true that pregnancy can increase the risk of gum disease, its called pregnancy gingivitis and presumably in ye olden days, when people had worse oral hygiene and no free dental treatment, it was common to lose a tooth in pregnancy. My gums absolutely piss blood everytime I brush them during pregnancy.

nickelbabe Thu 26-Sep-13 17:29:57

Ilethimkeep - you get prescriptions free too - during pregnancy and until your child is 1year old.
I presume it's because it's expensive having a baby.

Mrsmorton Thu 26-Sep-13 17:26:02

sassh that's like saying you can lose protein from your hair. Your body can't take your tooth tissue away once it has made it just like it can't ungrow your hair. Complete bollocks I'm afraid

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 26-Sep-13 10:18:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 26-Sep-13 10:14:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VenusDeWillendorf Thu 26-Sep-13 08:53:17

I think old wives tales abound because childbearing and childbirth are so fraught with danger, and a lot of the processes are hidden.

It makes sense to me to have 'wisdom' passed along which might help <even if it's off the wall>

More women have died in childbirth than in any war, and there's no tomb of the unknown mother, or Poppy Day for her. Why not? Maybe time for a pink poppy?

ILetHimKeep20Quid Thu 26-Sep-13 08:39:08

My mil lost teeth through her pregnancies. Why do you ght free dental treatment when you're pregnant?

sashh Thu 26-Sep-13 07:30:14

I still get a few people at the dentist who believe pregnancy steals the minerals from their teeth or that you lose a tooth for every pregnancy you have.

There is a grain of truth in that though, when you are pregnant your body will try its best (yes I know internal organs do not have a personality) to give the baby all the nutrients it needs and if calcium is lacking in your diet it will be taken from an existing source.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Thu 26-Sep-13 06:41:44

Showy, your advice helped me a lot when I was overdue with DD2, actually. I suddenly realised that not only was trying to bring labour on making me crazier crazy, but all of the things recommended (except sex) would go a long way to ensuring that when I did go into labour, I would do so when tired and uncomfortable. So instead of spending my last couple of days slogging up hills, eating spicy things and drinking horrible tasting tea, I spent them napping and watching TV. It didn't help, but it was far more enjoyable.

That was two years ago, and I'm still grateful!

MoominsYonisAreScary Thu 26-Sep-13 06:27:57

I dont think the really bad hg I had during pg helped my teeth

garlicbaguette Thu 26-Sep-13 02:02:15

Ooh, you're right, Bitchy! Never knew that!

"Your hips and pelvic area may begin to ache as pregnancy hormones relax the ligaments (tough, ropelike bands of tissue) that hold bones together. The bones will begin moving in preparation for childbirth. ... Pregnancy hormones also affect the ligaments and bones in your mouth, so teeth may loosen. This will go away after pregnancy."


BitchyRestingFace Wed 25-Sep-13 23:57:31

I thought that the same hormone that triggers ligaments to loosen also affects gums and that was the cause of the lose-a-tooth thing.

AKissIsNotAContract Wed 25-Sep-13 22:28:36

Pregnancy hormones give an exaggerated response to plaque so an increased risk of gum disease. Losing a tooth for every pregnancy is just a wives tale.

AdaProgrammer Wed 25-Sep-13 22:25:06

I think "Gain a child, lose a tooth" must have some basis in fact, otherwise why would we be given free dental treatment during pregnancy? Mind you, I lost a tooth despite the free treatment.

ZingWantsCake Wed 25-Sep-13 22:11:43


grin ah for getting that wrong! there's opium in poppyseeds, not herion - do correct them!shock

purrpurr Wed 25-Sep-13 21:50:20

Daley grin you like a deadline huh?

Juniper, seconding the hiccups. I hiccuped at random like a drunk tramp at the start of my labour.

AndHarry Wed 25-Sep-13 21:31:25

My favourite ridiculous 'tip' was when I was pg with DS and not-so-DSIL was Very Concerned because I was eating poppyseed bread and so DS would be born with a heroin addiction confused

DaleyBump Wed 25-Sep-13 21:21:09

Shit. I'm getting married on the 5th of November. I'm due on the 30th. I'm not going to my wedding, am I?

FrightRider Wed 25-Sep-13 21:16:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GroupieGirl Wed 25-Sep-13 21:13:52

Drmelons what a crock of shit. Everyone know it's cider.

ShowOfHands Wed 25-Sep-13 21:02:55

Zing, I'm not being arrogant. I'm not telling anybody what did or didn't start labour. I simply don't know. What I'm saying is that you cannot categorically say what started labour, nobody can because they don't actually know how labour starts. We do know that in every conceivable trial or test carried out, sex has shown no cause and effect link to labour starting. What you're talking about re prostaglandins in sperm is theory only. There are prostaglandins in semen just as you'll find a specific enzyme in pineapple which is also associated with the beginning of labour. But we know they aren't found in significant enough quantities to make any difference. And as far as the theory is concerned, the prostaglandins you find in semen are far more likely to have an effect on you if ingested orally and interestingly, research has shown that a slightly higher percentage of people have started labour after ingesting them orally than after sex but still absolutely no evidence whatsoever to suggest anything other than coincidence.

So no, I'm not being smug, I'm being honest and realistic. I'm not saying people don't have sex and then have babies some time afterwards. I'm saying people have sex all the way through pregnancy with no ill effects, people have sex right at the end all the time and no labour. And research tells us that it doesn't work as well as logic. It's the time old MN adage of anecdotes not equalling data.

And I'm aware of the research. My friend did a PhD in it and I helped her out quite a lot!

Sorry you think I'm being arrogant. I'm not. I truly see no harm in people believing what they want about their own bodies. They may even be right. As I said in my earlier post, what I don't like is that all the old wives' tales (which is all they are as science has found no basis for them) being used to tell pregnant women or any women what to do. I know too many women who have ended up thoroughly demoralised, sore and unhappy because they've been told categorically that x has been found to start labour and you should do it when it simply isn't true.

juniper9 Wed 25-Sep-13 19:06:13

I struggled to lift the washing machine above my head too

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