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Can Pregnant Women Take Allergy Medicine

Is It Safe To Take Benadryl During Pregnancy

What medicine can a pregnant woman take for allergies?

When youre suffering from an allergic reaction, you want to take something to help relieve the symptoms. Pregnant people have used Benadryl routinely and safely as an antihistamine to block the effects of allergic reactions.

Benadryl is generally safe to take during pregnancy. It is classified as a Category B medication by the Food and Drug Administration . This classification means the drug is believed to pose no risk to people taking the medication during pregnancy, and no risk to the baby as well.

However, it doesnt mean that its completely risk-free. There are no controlled studies to show its definitely safe in pregnancy, says Dr. Taraneh Shirazian, an OB-GYN at NYU Langone Health and founder of Saving Mothers.

Pregnant people still need to be cautious when taking the drug. Healthcare professionals advise to take Benadryl only when you need it for allergies since no medication is 100% safe to use during pregnancy, says Clinical Pharmacist Jerry Wong, PharmD, who has worked at Texas Children’s Hospital and Houston Methodist Hospital. Benadryl should be used in the lowest effective dose for the shortest time possible, he cautions.

If your allergies are ongoing and you need relief beyond the occasional dose, speak to your physician. Don’t use any medication regularly in pregnancy unless prescribed by a physician, advises Dr. Shirazian.

List Of Allergy Medications For Pregnant Women

The findings are published in the journal Science Translational Medicine. New findings published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology reveal that vitamin-D rich foods during pregnancy could reduce allergy risk in children.

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OTC Medications to Use While Pregnant Pregnant women commonly use over-the-counter medications. Although most over-the-counter drugs have an excellent safety profile, some have unproven safety or are.

“Its very important for pregnant women to take very seriously any respiratory infection,” said Tony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Pregnant women, as I previously reported, are at much greater.

WebMD experts and contributors provide answers to your health questions.

Can Allergies Harm Pregnancy And Fetus

If you have previously had allergies, you can have a safe and healthy pregnancy. In fact, your baby is likely not to be affected by anything in the womb, even if you feel that your allergies are very bad.

Tell your doctor about your symptoms, and always check carefully before using any medication. Even the drugs you took regularly before becoming pregnant. Some drugs are considered safe during pregnancy, while others are not.

Try your best to avoid known allergens if possible. It can be difficult, especially if the trigger of the allergy is pollen or some invisible dust.

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Does Benadryl Affect Baby In Womb

Potential harm to baby

However, several recent medical studies have found that diphenhydramine doesnt cause these or any abnormalities at birth at all. This research shows that taking Benadryl at any stage of your pregnancy, even the first trimester, is safe.

Which Allergy Medications Are Safe During Pregnancy

What medicine can a pregnant woman take for allergies ...

Can you take Benadryl while pregnant? What about Claitan? Heres the scoop on whats safe for pregnancy, so you dont have to suffer from a stuffy nose and itchy eyes in silence!

While many women report that their allergies improve or disappear during pregnancy, some still experience symptoms. If you’re among them, you should know that there plenty of ways to relieve symptoms both with and without medication.

Your best defense against allergy symptoms is to avoid the triggers that cause them. Of course, you can’t control what happens outside, but you can reduce your exposure in your home by wearing a mask when you dust or vacuum, keeping pets out of your bedroom, and protecting your mattress and pillows with special covers to keep out dust mites. Using a dehumidifier to keep the air in your home under 50 percent humidity can also help fend off mites and mold.

Its always best to avoid taking any type of medication during pregnancy, if possible. That said, if allergies or nasal congestion due to upper-respiratory infection are keeping you from sleeping, eating, or participating fully in your life, your doctor is likely to consider Claritin to help you cope with your symptoms. Rest assured that after years of research on animals and humans, Claritin has been classified as safe to use during pregnancy. Antihistamines like Chlor-Trimeton and Benadryl are also deemed safe for pregnant women to take.

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Allergy Relief Alternatives To Zyrtec

While using this particular medication while pregnant is most of the time a normal thing, there are certain women who may be interested in avoiding drugs and turn to other alternatives that involve allergy relief.

Here`re a few drug-free methods that can be used to aid relieve seasonal allergic reactions.

  • Avoiding pollen peak time frames Pollen is a massive trigger of allergies. If it also involves you, you should try and remain indoors as the day starts and then again around the middle of the day when it`s considered the pollen count to be at the highest.
  • Physical exercise Research proves that exercises and workout could in fact aid ease the inflammation of the nose.
  • Using saline Lots of people who experience allergic reactions are making use of saline spray in order to flush out the nasal passages and get them rid of various irritants. You could try and use a neti pot that is filled with saline water as well.
  • Close the windows Although most people love fresh air, it isn`t a good idea when it comes people suffering of allergies, especially when talking about pregnant women. You should try and maintain the windows closed while in allergy season, and if it is hot outside, just use the air conditioner.

About Antihistamines And This Study

About antihistamines

Antihistamines include both prescription and over-the-counter medications. They typically are used to treat

  • Asthma and/or allergies
  • Indigestion .

About 10-15% of women report taking antihistamines during pregnancy.

About this study

Researchers reviewed more than 50 published scientific articles that looked at the link between antihistamine use during pregnancy and birth defects. They evaluated the articles based on certain criteria: how researchers selected their study populations, how researchers determined antihistamine use in pregnancy, and how researchers identified babies with birth defects.

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What Are Some Alternatives For Treating Allergies While Pregnant

Even though for the most part Benadryl and many over-the-counter allergy medicines are possibly safe during pregnancy, natural alternatives may be something to explore as well. Some women may try to take no medications unless absolutely necessary during pregnancy. Medical professionals might also recommend trying alternatives to medicine first. One non-medication option for allergies is the use of a neti pot. With a neti pot, individuals can clear allergens and irritants from their nasal passage. Its also called sinus irrigation. Other allergy prevention strategies can include avoiding triggers or wearing a mask when certain allergen levels are high, or air quality is low. Some pregnant women may opt to stay indoors on days when there are high levels of pollen for example.

How Pregnancy Can Affect Allergies

Re: Are there good allergy medications that pregnant women can take?

If youve already noticed that youre more bothered by allergies, youre not alone. Studies suggest that allergy symptoms increase for 10 to 30 percent of pregnant women. But allergies are also unpredictable. Some women find no change while others say theyre less affected when pregnant, and still others develop allergies for the first time.

Though having allergies can be difficult for you, the allergies themselves dont seem to affect your baby directly. What you take for them, however, could pass to him or her in the womb. The problem is that it’s not entirely clear which drugs do this, making it hard to know whats truly safe, according to research in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Also, few studies have looked at the best ways to treat allergies in pregnant women.

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Pain Or Headache Relief

Acetaminophen is the drug of choice for pain during pregnancy. Its widely used with very few documented adverse effects.

Aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , on the other hand, should be avoided during pregnancy.

NSAIDs include:

  • ketoprofen
  • naproxen

If your pain is particularly severe after a surgery, for example your doctor may prescribe a short course of opioid pain relievers. When taken as directed, they may not affect fetal development.

That said, opioid use during pregnancy does carry the risk of withdrawal, called neonatal abstinence syndrome , after delivery.

Instruction When Using Zyrtec

Zyrtec normally comes as a tablet of 10 mg. Just one tablet needs to be taken per day. Other generic Zyrtec versions include a 5 mg option.

If you don`t experience extreme allergic reactions, and you only require a bit of relief, you can choose to use this drug.

Zyrtec has to be used at the same hour every day. However, if it may happen for you to miss one dose, you can take one pill as soon as you can. If you just remembered that you have to take a dose near the time when your dose was scheduled, it`s not such a big deal if you skip one dose.

Still, try to avoid taking 2 doses of this medication at the very same time.

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Can Allergy Medications Safely Be Used During Pregnancy

Antihistamines may be useful during pregnancy to treat the nasal and eye symptoms of seasonal or perennial allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, the itching of urticaria or eczema, and as an adjunct to the treatment of serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis . With the exception of life-threatening anaphylaxis, the benefits from their use must be weighed against any risk to the fetus. Because symptoms may be of such severity to affect maternal eating, sleeping or emotional well-being, and because uncontrolled rhinitis may pre-dispose to sinusitis or may worsen asthma, antihistamines may provide definite benefit during pregnancy.

Chlorpheniramine , and diphenhydramine have been used for many years during pregnancy with reassuring animal studies. Generally, chlorpheniramine would be the preferred choice, but a major drawback of these medications is drowsiness and performance impairment in some patients.. Two of the newer less sedating antihistamines loratadine , and cetirizine have reassuring animal and human study data and are currently recommended when indicated for use during pregnancy.

When women with asthma and allergies get pregnant, one-third find their asthma and allergies improved, one-third find they worsen and one-third remain unchanged.

Allergist James Sublett, MD

What Can I Do To Reduce Allergy Symptoms During Pregnancy Without Taking Medications

Is Nasal Decongestant Spray Safe To Use During Pregnancy?

Stay away from people who are smoking. Smoke can make allergies worse. Exposure to secondhand smoke during pregnancy isnt good for you or your baby.

If youre allergic to pollen, try to stay inside as much as possible. If you do go outside, try wearing wraparound sunglasses to keep pollen out of your eyes. When you come back inside, take off your shoes, wash your hands and face, and change clothes so the pollen doesnt stay with you. Then put your clothes in the wash. Shower and wash your hair before you go to sleep to help relieve nighttime symptoms.

If youre allergic to dust, make sure your house is cleaned regularly or hire someone to clean for you. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter, a wet mop or a sweeper to avoid stirring up dust. A microfiber cloth is better than a traditional feather duster. Try to keep away from attics, basements and other musty places.

If youre allergic to pets, let your dog- and cat-owning friends know of your allergy before you drop by so they have time to make arrangements. If youre suddenly allergic to your own pet, try to make at least one room in your house pet-free.

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Safety Of Benadryl During Pregnancy

Youre not alone in seeking allergy relief while pregnant. Up to 15 percent of women in the United States report taking antihistamines like Benadryl while they were pregnant. Medical research shows that Benadryl is most likely safe for your growing baby.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that Benadryl is in a group of antihistamine drugs called H. This group has been tested by many research studies and found to be safe during pregnancy.

Other brand-name allergy meds in this family of antihistamines include Claritin and Zyrtec. Doxylamine, another H antihistamine commonly used to help with sleeplessness in pregnancy, is considered safe. You may know it by its brand name, Unisom.

Another kind of allergy antihistamine drug is called H. This kind has been tested by fewer medical studies and may not be safe during pregnancy. OTC antihistamines in this group include Pepcid, Zantac, and Tagamet these should only be used under the supervision of a doctor.

Sneezing Runny Nose And Watery Eyes

These symptoms are the result of histamine release, which isan immune response to an invading virus. Chlorpheniramine, such as TriaminicAllergy, and diphenhydramine, such as Benadryl, are safe to take duringpregnancy. However, both can cause drowsiness, so these are best taken atbedtime. The maximum dosage for chlorpheniramine is 32 mg in 24 hours.

When compared to placebos, antihistamines have the most successful resultswithin the first couple days of treatment. Patients didnt report any relief ofsymptoms between days three and 10. Newer antihistamines, such as loratadine, are approved for allergies, not colds, so there isnt informationabout how well they work for cold symptoms.

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Main Findings From This Study

  • Scientific research suggests that using most types of antihistamines during pregnancy is not linked to birth defects.
  • Out of 54 studies examined, 9 studies showed potential links between certain antihistamines and certain birth defects. Researchers need to study these potential links further.
  • Researchers found many studies on antihistamine medications typically used to treat allergies, asthma, or nausea and vomiting .
  • Examples of H1-receptor antagonists include diphenhydramine , dimenhydrinate , loratadine , and cetirizine .
  • In contrast, researchers found relatively few studies on antihistamines typically used to treat indigestion .
  • Examples of H2-receptor antagonists include ranitidine , famotidine , and cimetidine .
    • Talk with your doctor if you are pregnant and you have taken any medicine or are thinking of taking any medicine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as dietary or herbal products.
    • Pregnant women should not stop or start taking any type of medication that they need without first talking with a doctor.
    • If you are planning a pregnancy and are using any medications, please talk to your doctor about which medications are necessary and should be continued.

    Should Pregnant Women Take Allergy Medicines

    Allergy medications and pregnancy

    Strangely, in many women, allergic symptoms disappear during their pregnancy, but that may not be true for all pregnant women. Now if you are pregnant and have an allergy, you are likely to wonder if you should avoid allergy medication. The answer would be yes, but there are ways to deal with it with or without antihistamines during pregnancy.

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    Can Pregnant Women Get Allergy Shots

    Allergy shots are considered safe for pregnant women, but only for those who have received the injection for a while before becoming pregnant. Most allergists say its not a good idea to start allergy shots during pregnancy, as they trigger changes to an already fluctuating immune system and can cause unexpected reactions.

    Medications For Seasonal Allergies During Pregnancy

    • diphenhydramine
    • loratadine

    There are always risks when taking any medication during pregnancy. Women should talk with their doctors before taking allergy medicines to make sure they arent potentially harmful. While doctors consider many oral over-the-counter medications safe for seasonal allergies, using both oral and nasal spray decongestants isnt as studied or well-known. Use of nasal sprays may be safer than oral decongestants. Thats because nasal sprays arent as likely to be absorbed into the bloodstream. An example is oxymetazoline, an ingredient in brands like Afrin and Neo-Synephrine. Women should exercise caution when using nasal sprays for more than three days. This is because using decongestants for longer can make allergy symptoms worse by causing nasal swelling. Some women also get allergy shots. These are compounds of allergens that are injected as a means to desensitize a person to an allergen. If a woman becomes pregnant while she is in the course of her allergy shots, she can usually keep getting them. Pregnancy isnt a good time to start getting allergy shots. Its possible they can cause strong allergic reactions. Without knowing a womans reaction, its best to delay starting allergy shots until after giving birth.

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    How To Reduce Your Symptoms While Pregnant

    Unfortunately, one of best ways to reduce allergy symptoms is to avoid your triggers, but thats often easier said than done. You cant just lock yourself inside your house during ragweed season!

    But there are a few alternative remedies for cutting down on your exposure to allergens, says Dr. Jones. You can:

    • Change your clothes after spending time outside or exposed to allergy triggers.
    • Run a humidifier to remove allergens and impurities from the air.
    • Stay hydrated.
    • Use nasal saline irrigation.
    • Utilize air conditioning in your car and home instead of keeping the windows open.

    Of course, if youre still struggling with your allergy symptoms, you should reach out for additional help.

    Don’t hesitate to chat with your physician or midwife regarding your symptoms and seek their expert advice what can be done, says Dr. Jones.


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