For most women, pregnancy comes with headaches, backaches, body aches, swelling, and soreness– to name just a few. But not all pain medications are created equal– at least when it comes to medication and pregnancy. It really comes down to the question of whether the selected pain medication will harm the baby or the mother and if it will relieve your ailment. First of all, the best advice is to talk with your doctor extensively before deciding on the best course of action. Your doctor will be able to guide you towards the pain medication that is safe for you and your baby. The following list is to be used when you discuss your options with your doctor; it is not meant to be used instead of or contrary to medical advice.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol): This is the most common pain killer that pregnant women use. It is considered safe to use throughout the entire pregnancy.
Ibuprofen (Motrin and Advil): Most doctors recommend Ibuprofen as safe during the first two trimesters. But, it isn’t recommended to use during your third trimester because it can sometimes interfere with labor and delivery.
Naproxen (Aleve): Similar to Ibuprofen, Naproxen is considered safe to take up until your last trimester.
Aspirin: This is one to be avoided while pregnant. It can be harmful to your baby during each of the three trimesters.
If you are looking for medication for specific problems, look at the list below:
Cold or Flu: One of the most common medications for pregnant women who are experiencing a cold or flu is to take Tylenol (Acetaminophen) or Tylenol Cold. You can also try Sudafed, Dristan, Neosynephrine, Robitussin DM, Halls, and Vicks Cough Syrup.
Allergies: Benadryl seems to work well for those expectant mothers with allergies.
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Constipation: It is very common to experience constipation during pregnancy. Luckily, there are several options available which are safe for your baby: Metamucil, Fibercon, and Citrucel.
Diarrhea: On the other end of the spectrum, there is also medication for diarrhea– with a stipulation. In order to use Parepectolin, Kaopectate, or Imodium, it needs to be after the 12th week of pregnancy.
Heartburn: Another common side effect of pregnancy is heartburn. Luckily, there are several medications you can take, including Tums, Maalox, and Mylanta.
Again, talking with your doctor about your medication choices is essential to staying healthy and happy throughout your pregnancy. Keep in mind that if using medication is too worrisome for you, opt for natural remedies. There are as many options through natural means as there are through medications.