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Is Allergy Relief Safe During Pregnancy

Pseudoephedrine In Pregnancy: Is It Safe

Allergy medications and pregnancy

Pseudoephedrine, sold under the brand name Sudafed, is used to provide temporary relief from sinus congestion and pressure. It also relieves nasal congestion due to common cold, hay fever, and other upper respiratory allergies .

Pseudoephedrine is sold behind the counter, which means it is accessible without a prescription, only after the pharmacist assesses the patients requirements . It could also be one of the ingredients in some nasal decongestants which are sold over-the-counter. In this post, MomJunction tells you if it is safe to use pseudoephedrine during pregnancy, and the possible risks of using it.

Is It Safe To Take Benadryl During Pregnancy

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.

Tests For Allergies When Pregnant

Allergy testing is usually done to ascertain the cause of the allergy in the body. Potential allergens are selected and pricked on a small patch of skin. A redness or reaction indicates an allergic response to the substance. This helps in identifying the cause of the allergy, and subsequent preventive measures to be taken.

Blood tests to test the level of immune response are also done to identify if the symptoms presented are due to allergic reactions in the body.

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Which Steroid Nasal Sprays Should I Use If Im Pregnant

We have the most information about budesonide use during pregnancy as far as research studies go. For this reason, its recommended as the first-choice treatment for allergic rhinitis in pregnant women. Budesonide nasal spray is available with a prescription as generic budesonide or brand-names Rhinocort Aqua, Entocort, and Pulmicort. Its also available over-the-counter as Rhinocort Allergy. Other options that are safe to use during pregnancy include mometasone and fluticasone propionate .

As we mentioned above, triamcinolone , which is also available over the counter, is the main steroid nasal spray of potential concern. If you have questions about which nasal steroid spray to choose, be sure to talk to your healthcare provider before you try any.

Can You Take Allergy Medications When Pregnant

What Kind of Allergy Medicine Is Safe During Pregnancy?

Check with your practitioner to see what medications you can safely take during pregnancy. That goes even if you were already regularly taking prescription, over-the-counter or homeopathic medications: Don’t continue to use any of them until you get the go-ahead from a practitioner, who should be the first and final word on any allergy treatments you use.

That said, there are some general do’s and don’ts about allergy medications during pregnancy:

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What If I Take Benadryl Before Realizing I’m Pregnant

If you took Benadryl without realizing you were pregnant, you dont need to worry. Over-the-counter medications such as Benadryl are considered safe and pose no risk to you or your baby.

However, if you have been taking it regularly and plan to continue regular use of it after finding out you are pregnant, you should talk to a pharmacist or doctor. Even though pregnant people should be cautious about medication, make sure to consult a physician before stopping or making any changes to how you take your regular medications.

How Is Asthma Treated During Pregnancy

Between 4 and 8 percent of pregnant women have asthma, a respiratory condition in which the airways become narrowed when exposed to certain triggers. Symptoms include wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, and persistent coughing. It’s important to control your symptoms: If you’re not getting enough air, neither is your baby.

About 70 percent of people with asthma also have allergies. Asthma triggers include cold air, exercise, strong odors, and lung irritants such as secondhand smoke.

Poorly controlled asthma can deprive your baby of oxygen, increasing the risk of premature delivery, poor growth, and low birth weight. It can also contribute to preeclampsia, a form of high blood pressure that can result in poor fetal growth and premature birth.

Fortunately, most asthma medications are safe during pregnancy. If you have occasional, mild symptoms, you’ll likely need treatment with an inhaled bronchodilator spray such as Ventolin only during flare-ups. If you have persistent mild to severe symptoms, your doctor may recommend an inhaled steroid, such as Pulmicort. Some women with moderate to severe symptoms might need a long-acting bronchodilator such as Serevent.

Doctors prefer to treat asthma with inhaled meds because very little of the drug reaches the fetus. However, if these don’t effectively control your asthma, you can opt to take an oral steroid such as prednisone until symptoms are under control.

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Can I Be Tested For Allergies During Pregnancy

If you have symptoms but aren’t sure what triggers them, getting tested can make your treatment more effective. Here’s what experts have to say about allergy tests while you’re pregnant.

This test, also called RAST, is completely safe for Mom and baby. “It’s performed outside of the body, and therefore there’s no risk of an allergic reaction,” says Mike Tingale, spokesperson for the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. It’s pretty simple — a small amount of blood is drawn. Using this sample, clinicians check for about 20 allergens you get results within a few days. Most insurance companies cover the test, but check in advance to be sure.

A small needle is used to make a series of shallow scratches on the forearm, which are then exposed to potential allergens. If you’re allergic to a substance, the test site will become red and swollen. This test is generally considered safe for pregnant women, but there’s a slight chance of a reaction — including hives, shortness of breath, or closing of the throat. For this reason, many allergists don’t perform it on pregnant women.–Jessica Wohlgemuth

Originally published in the September 2008 issue of American Baby magazine.

American Baby

Avoiding Allergy Triggers During Pregnancy

Treating Allergies During Pregnancy and Beyond

The American College of Allergies, Asthma & Immunology recommends allergy management through environmental control during pregnancy. They offer the following general tips for keeping allergen exposure to a minimum:

  • Remove allergy causing pets from the house.
  • Seal pillows, mattresses, and box springs in special dust mite-proof casings.
  • Wash bedding weekly in 130 F water to kill dust mites.
  • Keep home humidity under 50% to control dust mite and mold growth.
  • Use filtering vacuums to control airborne dust when cleaning.
  • Close windows, use air conditioning, and avoid outdoor activity between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m. when pollen and pollution are at their highest.

A combination of allergen avoidance and alternative treatments can be just the thing for a pregnant woman who wants to avoid allergy medication. The investments she makes in her own health and that of her baby will have long-term ramifications for the health of her home for many years to come. Not only do allergy relief products provide a natural, safe, and effective way to combat allergies during pregnancy, but they will also keep indoor air clean for the new baby and for the entire family. Helping the entire family breathe better is nothing to sneeze at!

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What Is Hay Fever

Hay fever is a common condition that affects nearly 1 in every 5 people in Australia. Hay fever is also known as allergic rhinitis, and is often simply called ‘allergies’. Symptoms of hay fever include an itchy, runny or blocked nose, sneezing, and itchy or watery eyes.

Despite its name, hay fever is not necessarily triggered by hay and does not cause a fever.

Is Allergy Medicine Safe During Pregnancy

If your allergies interfere with eating or sleeping, you may want to discuss medication with your doctor. Although it’s best to avoid unnecessary drugs during the first trimester, many allergy medications are safe during the last six months.

A nasal spray can ease congestion and won’t hurt you or your baby. Your doctor may also recommend an antihistamine or a decongestant. Chlor-Trimeton is one of the safest nonprescription antihistamines but can cause drowsiness. Nonsedating antihistamines such as Claritin and Zyrtec are safe for pregnant women and are also available without a prescription.

Many doctors recommend Afrin, an over-the-counter nasal spray. Little, if any, of the drug is absorbed into your system, which makes it a good choice. Over-the-counter allergy-blocking nasal sprays such as NasalCrom are also considered safe, as are prescription nasal steroids like Nasacort AQ.

If you’re already getting allergy shots, it’s okay to continue them. You should not, however, start shots during pregnancy, because there’s a slight risk of a serious allergic reaction.

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Drug Safety During Pregnancy

According to the Food and Drug Administration , no medicines are considered completely safe during pregnancy. This is because most medications have not been tested in pregnant women. Pregnant women are, naturally, reluctant to sign up for medication safety studies.

Therefore, the FDA has created pregnancy registries that help inform clinicians about the relative safety of specific medications. These registries contain observational information that doctors have gleaned from observing their patients taking medications during pregnancy.

Your doctor can use this information, along with informative prescription labeling, to help you decide whether a medication is right for you.

It is your doctor’s responsibility to talk to you about the risks and benefits of continuing, stopping, or starting a medication while pregnant. Because every woman is different, these risks and benefits must be gauged on an individual basis.

Every pregnancy is different. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of medications for you.

The newer prescription labeling system replaced the old system of putting drugs into categories labeled A, B, C, D, and X. Newer prescription labels provide more detailed information about the potential risks to expectant mothers, developing fetuses, and breastfeeding babies.

Ways To Find Allergy Relief While Pregnant

Allergy Medications During Pregnancy: Are They Safe?

Home ยป 5 Ways to Find Allergy Relief While Pregnant

Approximately a quarter of expectant mothers suffer from recurrent allergies or allergy symptoms while pregnant. If you find yourself a part of this group, dont worry! There are plenty of ways you can find allergy relief that is safe for you and your child:

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Is It Safer To Skip Allergy Medication Altogether When I’m Pregnant

If your symptoms aren’t bad, your doctor may suggest other treatments instead. You could allergy-proof your home or rely on saline nasal sprays.

But if allergy symptoms are a big problem — making it hard to sleep, for instance — taking medication may be better for your health and your baby’s.

If you have allergic asthma, you need to take the medication as prescribed. Uncontrolled asthma can cause serious problems during pregnancy.

Is Benadryl Safe To Take While Pregnant

Benadryl is considered to be safe during pregnancy. Doctors and nurses recommend this OTC medication to help relieve allergy symptoms, even while youre pregnant. Recent studies have found Benadryl to be safe. However, always remember that no medicine prescription or OTC is ever 100 percent safe during pregnancy.

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Allergies Vs Nasal Congestion During Pregnancy

Expectant noses are, unfortunately, stuffy noses. Nasal congestion usually starts sometime in the second trimester, as high levels of estrogen and progesterone increase blood flow throughout your body including in your nose causing mucus membranes to swell and soften. This can make you as stuffed up as if you had a cold or an allergy, resulting in nosebleeds during pregnancy and/or postnasal drip that may make you cough or even gag at night.

So how can you tell the difference between allergies and a bad case of pregnancy congestion? If you’re suffering from allergies, you’ll most likely experience the additional symptoms mentioned above along with the stuffiness and coughing. If noticeable itchiness and sneezing aren’t plaguing you, it could just be the hormone-related congestion of pregnancy. If you’re not sure, talk to your doctor.

What Allergy Relief Is Safe In Pregnancy

Can allergic rhinitis affect pregnancy? – Dr. Sreenivasa Murthy T M

Suffering from allergies during pregnancy is never a fun experience. Not only do you have all the pregnancy related aches and pains, but your nose feels like someone stuffed it with cotton and youre constantly sneezing. Some allergy medications are considered safe for use during pregnancy, but its always the best idea to talk with your obstetrician before taking any medication either over the counter or prescription. Medications are categorized based upon safety during pregnancy and your obstetrician will be able to talk with you about the categories and which medications are best for your symptoms.

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What Are The Possible Risks Of Taking Pseudoephedrine During Pregnancy

In addition to the probable risk of gastroschisis , the use of pseudoephedrine is associated with other risks such as a raise in blood pressure due to its vasoconstricting property. Hence women with high blood pressure should not take this medication unless the doctor prescribes it .

Do not take pseudoephedrine within two weeks of taking monoamine oxidase inhibitor antidepressants such as isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, etc., to avoid a possible drug interactions .

Food Allergies During Pregnancy

Wondering if peanut butter is safe for the little peanut you’re feeding? Good news: The latest research suggests that eating peanuts while pregnant not only doesn’t trigger peanut and other allergies in baby-to-be, but it may actually prevent them. So as long as you’re not personally allergic to peanuts, there’s no reason to skip them now that you’re expecting. Same goes for dairy and other highly-allergenic foods.

From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.

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Allergy Eye Drops & Pregnancy

If you’re pregnant, you may know to question the safety of oral medicine use during pregnancy. But you may not think about topical medicines such as eye drops as having any potential effect on your baby. Eye drops can contain steroids, histamine blockers or mast cell stabilizers that also prevent histamine release. If you suffer from red, itchy swollen eyes due to allergy during pregnancy, ask your doctor what type of allergy eye drops to use, because some types of eye drops may present risks to your baby.

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

How Might Allergies Affect Your Pregnancy And Baby

Allergy Medications during Pregnancy

If you have allergies, you can definitely have a safe, healthy pregnancy. In fact, your baby likely won’t notice a thing in there, even if you’re feeling pretty lousy.

Tell your doctor about your symptoms, and always check before using any medication even those you were regularly taking before conceiving .

Also, try as best as you can to steer clear of known allergy triggers when possible .

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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.

Potential Harm To Baby

As mentioned, some early studies reported that taking Benadryl and other medications with diphenhydramine could cause abnormalities at birth. These included cleft lip, cleft palate, and other problems with the development of the upper mouth and lower nose.

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.

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