Safely Taking Medications During Pregnancy
When you are pregnant, everything you put into your body is for two, including
your medications. Although some medications can safely be taken throughout
pregnancy, others could endanger your baby, so it is important to consult with your
maternity doctor about any medications you currently take or are considering taking, including
over-the-counter drugs. This guide will help you understand how to safely
approach taking medications during pregnancy.
How can medications affect an unborn baby?
Some medications have been directly linked to birth defects, such as the
Accutane. Taking any of these medicines can dramatically increase the risk of birth
defects in your baby. For other medications, the risk is less clear and
depends on many different factors, including how much of the medicine
you take, when during your pregnancy you take it, and for how long you
take it. Your maternity doctor may recommend that you stop or avoid certain
medicines when pregnant to be safe, even if the exact risk to your baby
is not known.
How are chronic medical conditions managed during pregnancy?
If you have a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes or high blood
pressure, controlling your illness is essential for your baby’s
health. Many medications for chronic conditions can be safely taken throughout
pregnancy to protect both you and your baby. In some cases, your maternity
doctor may recommend you switch to a different medication to manage your
condition during your pregnancy.
How can I treat acute illnesses?
When you are pregnant and come down with a cold or headache, you can’t
simply reach for your medicine cabinet. It is important to discuss any
medication you want to take with your maternity doctor before taking them.
Some over-the-counter medicines, including ibuprofen and many cold medicines,
are dangerous for babies and should be avoided. Your maternity doctor
can offer alternatives.
At Good Samaritan Hospital, we provide care for mothers-to-be at all stages
of pregnancy, from checkups to labor and delivery in San Jose. Call our
hospital today at (888) 724-2362 for a referral to a maternity specialist
or more information about our