Yes, pregnant women can shoot too! The freaky notion that a pregnant woman puts herself and baby at a greater risk is ridiculous. There are a few things you can do to make sure these tiny issues do not become your issues.
Carrying your gun does not put you at any additional risk of shooting yourself or your baby. If you are well trained, responsible and smart enough to prevent shooting yourself any other day of the year, this day should work just the same. Remember the cardinal rules and expect the same from others and all is well.
Let’s discuss what you do need to avoid and how to keep you and baby healthy. The question of noise, pollution, lead, bacteria and all those other bad words come to mind. One thing a woman learns to ask almost the moment she gets pregnant, “Is it safe?” You ask this now before taking up any new activity or even continuing with older activities you may have considered safe before…like shooting.
Let’s take a look at the components of your firearm first. Your firearm is made up of several aspects and components. Steele, polymer, aluminum, scandium/titanium and so many other sturdy items make the list. If you own a Hi-Point it will contain plastic and Paper Mache (insert laughter here). These items are not a huge threat when clean and used appropriately with a firearm. If you are burning them in a bonfire and breathing in the debris, that’s a different topic of smarts we need to delve into later
When it comes to your ammo, you are dealing with the items that will cause waste and dirt. You are dealing with lead, dust, powder and more. Casings are more than likely made of brass and everything is sealed in well. Only when fired are you exposed. The word LEAD is the one we all worry over so.
There are ways to trump these issues. Using an outdoor range will provide great ventilation and freedom of air flow. You are not trapped with the excessive use of other shooters. If you do use an indoor range, choose one that has a quality filtration system and find time alone. You should always wear a dust mask. Do not reuse. Once done, trash it.
Consider also wearing shooting gloves to prevent the lead from sitting on your skin. It would take great amounts to absorb or be ingested but we are talking about precautions here right? After shooting, wash your hands in soapy cold water, blow your nose and get your clothes changed and washed. This practically eliminates any risk of exposure. This all goes the same if you are nursing.
We now have you bundled like the hazmat guy clearing an asbestos field, and you will be safe. You still worry about noise though. This is the easy part. As much as I refuse to use or allow a .22 in my life for the sole purpose of self-defense, I do use them for plinking and cheap practice. Another time I use them is with a pregnant student. I recommend she go shoot alone with just me on the range, and she uses a .22. The noise is controlled and at a minimum. There is very little stress and sound for baby. To make you feel even better, wrap your belly as a sound barrier.
Isolating us to the range gives the safety of the only shooters. No “irresponsible” guests in your elbow space also shooting. It is just you. The sound is at a controlled minimum and there is very little debris and lead.
Now go get that permit and make sure your practice is on track. You will be a pistol packing mama in no time. If you are expecting and want to discuss better ways to get through the training safely, contact me and I will work with you.