What Medications Are Safe To Take During Pregnancy?
Some medications are safe to take during pregnancy, while many others are not. Some are even more dangerous for a baby in the first three months. Before taking any medicine, you should speak with your doctor to make sure it is safe for you and your baby.
Ideally, you should speak with your doctor if you are thinking about getting pregnant and are on any prescription medications. Some medications may need to be stopped, while a simple switch of some medications is all that is needed to keep you and your baby healthy.
If you don’t get a chance to speak beforehand, you should talk to the doctor about the medications you are currently taking when you first know that you are pregnant. They will be able to tell you if the medicine is no longer safe and try to provide an alternative.
In some situations, the risk of stopping a medication could be worse for both you and your baby. For example, urinary tract infections are dangerous during pregnancy if left untreated. They can cause you to get a kidney infection, which in turn could result in early labor, severe illness for the mother, and low birth weight.
Important tip: Remember to tell any healthcare provider you see that you are pregnant.
Prescription medications aren’t the only ones you will need to know about. The over-the-counter medications you are accustomed to taking for headaches, allergies, and other issues can also be dangerous, although many are considered safe. Here is a quick list of medicines that are generally considered to be safe for your baby, although you should talk to your doctor about them.
Heartburn and acid reflux are common during pregnancy and can be uncomfortable. The condition is caused when the hormones produced during pregnancy cause muscles in the esophagus to relax. This can allow the fluids in the stomach to travel upwards, especially after a large meal or when you lay down.
Another reason you may have heartburn or acid reflux during pregnancy is that your baby is pushing on your stomach. This happens during the second and third trimesters.
GERD is a condition that comes with other issues, like trouble sleeping, difficulty swallowing, and constant heartburn. Speak with your doctor to ensure you do not have GERD and about the possible treatments that are safe for both you and your baby.
Medications that are safe for GERD, acid reflux, and heartburn:
The common cold is not fun at ANY time, but especially during pregnancy when you may already be uncomfortable. Most colds are viral and do not require antibiotics. In many cases, rest and fluids are the best course of action.
Before we discuss any medicines, it can be helpful to consider other methods of treating the symptoms. For example, cough drops and Vicks VapoRub®, while technically medicinal, can help you deal with things without taking harsher medicines like Robitussin. Also consider the following, to help with symptoms:
With precautions, you can take some cold medicines safely. Just remember to look for those with the fewest ingredients, avoid anything with Ibuprofen or aspirin, and never use herbal medications without consulting with your doctor.
For many women, nausea is just part of pregnancy. It is caused by the human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) hormone and is most common during early pregnancy, within the first thirteen weeks. For women who do not have severe morning sickness, nausea and vomiting should dissipate after that time.
There are many natural and easy remedies for nausea, including changing your diet and lifestyle, avoiding stuffy rooms, and munching on ginger candies or peppermints. If these and other remedies do not help, or if you experience severe nausea for longer than thirteen weeks, it’s time to talk to your doctor.
Many different sleep disorders can affect women during pregnancy, but insomnia is one of the most common. The first step for treating this condition is to make lifestyle changes.
Melatonin is a common OTC drug that many think is safe during pregnancy but is actually, not. Many insomnia medications have not yet been approved for use during pregnancy, so trying other things first is important.
Before taking any medications for sleep disorders, prescription or not, you must speak with your doctor. This is because the risks to your baby are higher with these medications than with others. Unisom SleepGels® and Benadryl are the only two medications that are likely safe, but each situation is different.
Whether you are pregnant for the first time or already know what to expect when expecting, the team at WHA is here to help! We are there for you through every step of your Pregnancy. Give us a call at (806) 355-6330 to schedule an appointment and learn more about our Services.
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