What Medicines Can Take While Pregnant? (Part-3)

Yeast infections

Yeast infections are common in pregnancy. Still, it’s a good idea to contact your doctor for a proper diagnosis before treating it at home.

Safe medications include:

  • miconazole (Monistat; category C)
  • clotrimazole (Lotrimin; category C)
  • butoconazole (Femstat; category C)

Home remedies and natural treatments are generally not recommended for yeast infections during pregnancy.

Skin rashes, cuts, scrapes

Rashes and itchy skin can be treated with OTC hydrocortisone cream during pregnancy. But mention these symptoms to your doctor to rule out conditions like pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy. You doctor may prescribe steroidal creams for certain conditions.

For cuts and scrapes, clean the area well with soap and water. You may then apply an OTC antibiotic ointment, like Neosporin, for added protection.

Difficulty sleeping

Safe medications for insomnia are those in the diphenhydramine (category B) family, including:

  • Sominex
  • Nytol

Doxylamine succinate (Unisom; category B) is another possibility that may also be used if you’re experiencing insomnia.

If OTC methods don’t work, your doctor may prescribe the following after weighing the benefits and risks:

  • sedating tricyclic antidepressants (Amitriptyline, Nortriptyline; category C)
  • benzodiazepines (Ativan, Klonopin; category D)

Benzodiazepines may be associated with risk of cleft or lip palate. Use in later pregnancy may not carry this risk.

Lifestyle changes you can try include the following:

  • Schedule sleep for consistent wake and bedtimes.
  • Get regular exercise.
  • Limit napping to no more than 30 minutes per day.
  • Skip caffeine and other stimulants.
  • Create a nighttime ritual. For example, take a bath, listen to music, or do yoga.
  • Explore alternative treatments, such as meditation or acupuncture.

Supplement use during pregnancy

Discuss any supplements you take or plan to take during your pregnancy with your doctor.

While prenatal vitamins are recommended to support levels of essential vitamins and minerals, like folate, other supplements may pose risks to your baby. They may also interact with medications you’re already taking.

Note that just because something is labeled “all-natural” doesn’t always mean it’s safe. Supplements are not regulated by the FDA in the same way as prescription drugs. Approach them with caution and discuss using with your doctor before starting any.

Prescription medications you’re already taking

Before pregnancy, you may already be taking prescription medications for thyroid issues, high blood pressure, or other conditions. Speak with your doctor about continuing these medications, especially if you’re already pregnant or plan to become pregnant in the near future.

In many cases, you may safely take your medication during pregnancy. Sometimes you may need to either adjust dosages or switch to another medication that’s considered safer for you and baby.

Alternative therapies

Complementary and alternative therapies may be good options to during pregnancy. Examples include:

  • acupuncture
  • acupressure
  • chiropractic care
  • massage therapy

Certain complementary and alternative medication methods, especially those involving herbs or supplements, may not be safe, however. In general, alternative therapies aren’t well-studied, so discuss any you plan on trying with your doctor.

Also, do your homework on different practitioners before heading in for a visit. Ensure they have the appropriate licenses to practice on pregnant women.

The takeaway

There are many medications you can safely take during pregnancy. The key is communicating with your healthcare provider.

A great online, evidence-based resource to check is Mother to Baby. It provides fact sheets on different drugs as well as additional information on potential interactions and birth defects.

Even better, most obstetrics offices have a helpline you can call between appointments. Don’t hesitate to dial in with any and all of your questions or concerns.

See More: What Medicines Can Take While Pregnant? (Part-2)

 

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