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Breaking fast on Tishah B’Av

10 August, 2016


I, be”H, will be around nine weeks pregnant on 9th Av this year. It’s my first pregnancy up to this stage. I normally fast well but I do generally feel a little ill for a few days afterwards as a result of the dehydration. The dehydration sort of kickstarts whatever latent fluey–ness I have in me. I do always fast though, but I am nervous as I have not been in this situation before. What do I do about this 9th Av?

I want to make sure that even if, for some unpredicted reason, I feel awful and feel I need to break the fast, I know how to do it in such a way that halachically I am still fasting and don’t get karet…


BeSha’ah tovah!

Tisha B’Av is a rabbinically mandated fast.  Though more serious than the other rabbinic fast days (Tzom Gedalyah, Asarah BeTevet, Shivah Asar b’Tammuz, and Ta’anit Esther), there is no issur karet involved and in cases of sickness a person may be advised not to fast. Typically, pregnant women should fast on Tisha B’Av unless they become sick or there is specific risk to them or the fetus.

This year, however, since Tisha B’Av is pushed off from Shabbat to Sunday, you should start off fasting, but feel free to break your fast if you start to feel at all uncomfortable or dehydrated. This is halachically fully permissible. Just don’t forget to make havdalah before eating or drinking.

Please consult your physician to confirm that this course of action is safe for you, and write back with any further questions.

This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

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