Medication When Pregnant

Updated on June 26, 2010
J.S. asks from Gilbert, AZ
12 answers

I am 19 weeks pregnant and I just came down with a terrible cold. My nose is so stuffy and runny. My doctor said I could basically take any of the Tylenol products. I got the Tylenol Severe Sinus Congestion. It contains Pseudoephedrine, Aceinamenophine, and Expectorant. It is the non-drowsy kind. I took it and it works really well for my nose but makes me a little jittery. It makes me worry if it is ok for the baby. Do any of you know how safe it is? What did you take when you were pregnant for a cold/

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answers from Phoenix on

I was told I could take regular Sudafed (NOT Sudafed PE). That took the edge off and I was able to do nasal washes which helped tremendously!

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answers from Albuquerque on

I would avoid medication unless I was absolutely dying...history is full of stories about supposedly safe meds that actually harmed babies. Studies come out all the time about new problems caused by medications.

There are lots of things you can do instead...homeopathic remedies totally work and are completely safe. Neti pots and saline rinses help soothe irritated nasal passages and clear them out, too. Use a humidifier. Get lots of rest. Feeling rotten is nature's way of saying, "Take it easy so your energy can be diverted to fighting this bug." A really great thing to take when you're sick is probiotics...the really good, expensive multiple strain ones you get in the health food store's refrigerated section. Good bacteria makes up about 70% of your immune system...antibiotics and meds hurt the balance, so you can restore it and get over this thing faster.

I haven't taken a medication, prescription or otherwise, in 6 years. I almost never get sick anymore. I have three kids, and one in preschool, so that's saying something!

I hope you feel better soon.



answers from Detroit on

I used saline nasal spray (not Afrin... just saline. Simply Saline is the best brand I've found) when I had colds during pregnancy. It's not going to make you feel 100% better but there are def. no ill effects to the baby.



answers from Indianapolis on

I had an awful sinus infection while pregnant with my second child and was prescribed Augmentin. I had to fly to Minneapolis the next day and chose not to take it because of side effects.

Since there's no cure for a cold, there really isn't anything you can do to protect the baby against the infection (virus), but you do need to alleviate your symptoms.

I'd ask a pharmacist first and foremost. Pseudoephedrine is FDA rated Pregnancy Category C meaning that it can have risks to the unborn baby.

Having been in the pharmaceutical industry for a long time and seeing data, it's not a risk I personally would take unless absolutely necessary.

Because your main issue is congestion, I'd recommend a neti pot. I've personally not tried one, but a colleague who is a former ER Nurse has been really complimentary of them for these types of issues.

Your pharmacist should be able to lead you in the right direction.

You CAN also use nasal steroids such as Rhinocort AQ which is approved by the FDA for use in pregnancy (Category B). I've used it to help with congestion (nasal) the past few years because pseudoephedrine causes my blood glucose to drop. I have severe congestion with allergies, and it's been a life saver.

Hope you get to feeling better soon.


answers from Chicago on, and look up each of the individual active ingredients.
Basically, category A & B are fine. Anything else and you don't want to take it while pregnant.

I don't want to freak you out, but decongestents are typically not recommended for pregnancy as they can cause birth defects. HOWEVER, that may be more severe of an issue during the first trimester, so please do some homework on that and don't quote me. Your doctor knows best.

Feel better!



answers from Phoenix on

I took antibiotics and cough syrup w/ very codein (prescribed by my Dr. and OBGYN) when my cold kept me up 4 nights nights in my second trimester. My baby cam out just fine;) The safest things are Tylenol (Class A which means all of the research show scarse to no side effects in pregnant mothers and their babies). The others are okay on moderation usually after the first trimester as advised by your OBGYN.



answers from San Francisco on

My doctors suggested that I take the more natural route. You can clear your nose with a saline solution. I would stay away from the Tylenol products. If it makes you jittery, what is it doing to the baby?

Got to be honest... the saline solution is not as effective but it doesn't effect the baby.

I had the stomach flu with my last pregnancy. I threw up so many times that I worried about the baby. But the advise nurse said because she was in the womb, she was protected from the 'contractions' my stomach were making.

It is certainly not fun to be sick anytime but especially when you are pregnant.

Good luck and get better!



answers from Los Angeles on

i wouldn't take it unless you absolutely need it. i think those medicines just alleviate the symptoms and doesn't actually "cure" it so if you can stand the stymptoms just wait it out. maybe try to find more natrual ways to allevaite the symptoms (i.e. steam, humidifier, chicken soup, etc.)...


answers from Austin on

You should double check on the pseudoephedrine because it does make people jittery and affects blood pressure. I think the tylenol reduces swelling, which can help your sinuses drain.
When I was pregnant I took allergy medicine. I was worried about the side effects, but I was having trouble breathing so my doctor said to go ahead and take it.



answers from Cincinnati on

I was told no cold medicine by my doctor, just Tylenol (but not Tylenol Cold) and Benadryl, and then certain plug-ins and the like. I would call your pharmacist and ask for the medication's pregnancy ratings. B-level is generally considered safe, C-level means a good portion of the medication reaches your baby and so to be taken only when absolutely needed, and X-level means you shouldn't take it.


answers from Dallas on

Call your doctor back, tell them how you're feeeling and that you're scared for the baby, but still miserable. Ask them to call you in a z-pack. It's perfectly safe for pregnancy, I've had to take 2 with my current pregnancy and past pregnancies. From what I've heard it's the safest antibiotic you can take when pregnant, will clear you up FAST and no crazy side effects. Good luck, hope you feel better soon!



answers from Dallas on

How about trying local honey before taking some meds? This alway helps what I have a cold, also I know it is hot out side but hot tea and load up on vitamin C. I hate taking meds especially when I was prego.

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