Tuesday 8 January 2019

Marla Ahlgrimm: Not all Drugs are Safe For Pregnant Women

Marla Ahlgrimm
Pregnant women are subject to the same types of health concerns as everyone else. And headaches, stuffy noses, and overall discomfort may even be more common in mothers-to-be, says Marla Ahlgrimm. It’s no surprise then that the vast majority of pregnant women have reached for an OTC medication at some point. But doing so without consulting with your doctor is dangerous.

According to Marla Ahlgrimm, certain medications, such as Tylenol, are typically considered safe for a developing fetus when used occasionally. However, women who take over-the-counter pain relief medicine more than three times per month during gestation may put their children at risk of behavioral problems, asthma, and other issues.

Marla Ahlgrimm cautions that medications available without a prescription are not necessarily safe for everyone. This includes supplements, herbal remedies, and vitamins.

Aspirin, Pepto-Bismol, ibuprofen, and pseudoephedrine all come with warnings against use by pregnant women. For example, Sudafed is not recommended during the first trimester and ibuprofen is not recommended during the first and third trimesters. So what is a woman to do if she experiences discomfort but does not want to risk her child? Marla Ahlgrimm offers this advice:

Start with non-pharmaceutical treatment. Pain and discomfort, for example, may be alleviated via massage or a warm bath. Cold symptoms can be lessened by drinking plenty of fluids, eating well, and getting an adequate amount of rest.

If you must take medication, use a single purpose product. Many over-the-counter products are formulated to treat symptoms. Even name brands that are typically considered safe, such as Tylenol, have multi-symptom products that contain active ingredients which are off-limits to pregnant women.

Talk to your doctor. Most importantly, Marla Ahlgrimm says speak with your OB/GYN or primary health care provider before introducing any new substance into your body.

Use of certain medications during pregnancy can cause everything from birth defects to premature delivery. For these reasons, Marla Ahlgrimm asserts that women should read labels, opt for non-medical treatment first, and discuss their needs with their doctor.


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