Wonder what medications are safe to use while pregnant? Check out Pregnancy and Medicine | Treating for Two Tips from a Nurse & Mom. This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.
Pregnancy and Medicine | Treating for Two Tips from a Nurse & Mom
I miss pregnancy. One of my greatest joys was being pregnant – the doors held open for me, the doctors orders included things like “eat a brownie everyday,” and a beautiful reminder everyday of the miracle of life. But as much as I’d like to sit here and gush over this time in our lives, I read a stat recently that rocked me to my mama core.
9 out of 10 pregnant women will take medicine during their pregnancy, but not all of those medicines are safe.
This week is National Women’s Health Week. And as a mom and a nurse – I just can’t sit on the sidelines and not do something about medicine safety for my fellow pregnant mamas. So today I’m sharing my best Pregnancy and Medicine tips and why the Treating for Two website by the CDC is a great resource for all moms (aka bookmark this PRONTO).
Pregnancy and Medicine – Why Should We Worry About Safety?
9 out of 10 pregnant women will take medicine during their pregnancy. That’s so close to 100%. But to be quite honest, there’s very little research done on medicine safety while pregnant. And those new medicines? We just don’t know enough about them.
It’s hard to keep up with the ever changing medical field, and even harder when you’re trying to do what’s best for your little growing baby and your health. Why should we worry? Because mixing medicines with lives can be potentially catastrophic: birth defects, pregnancy loss, prematurity, infant death, or developmental disabilities – aka the scary stuff. We as women need to take action, ask questions and make informed decisions when it comes to pregnancy and medicine.
Make a List & Check It Twice
Pregnancy brain. Yeah, I remember those days. When my brain is mush (let’s admit it, it’s still mush), I always write things down. Whether on my phone or the “old school” way, making a list helps me to remember what’s important when it comes to pregnancy and medication questions. And I will be the first to admit that even though I had 4 years of college, an externship and a full time job as a nurse, I still didn’t have all of the answers. So write them down. No question is dumb or small. Here’s just a sampling of questions that ran through my mind when I was pregnant. I made sure to write them all down for my first appointment and every appointment after.
- What medicines am I taking now? What medicines did I take before pregnancy?
- What about over-the-counter medicines, dietary supplements, vitamins and any other pills?
- What medicine should I take for “this situation?”
- What family health history is important when pregnant?
- Is there something I should look for on the medicine warning label?
- Can I take this cold medicine? What about a severe headache?
- This website said that this medicine is safe for pregnant women. Is it?
- How do medicines affect my birth plan?
4 Things You MUST Discuss with Your Health Provider NOW
It’s hard to spill our whole lives to a person we may see once a year. I get it. But that open and honest communication with our doctors/nurses/midwives/doulas can really benefit everyone when it comes to pregnancy and health. We need to start the conversation with our healthcare providers and give them as much information as possible to make care the best it can be. Take the initiative and discuss these 4 important things with your healthcare provider right away:
- All medicines and pills that you take, including over-the-counter medicines, herbal and dietary supplements, and vitamins.
- Plan for starting or stopping medications you are currently on.
- Best actions for controlling any of your health conditions and concerns.
- Your personal goals for managing any health conditions while pregnant.
Make Informed Decisions
Anyone else use Google as their go-to doctor? The internet is full of information these days, but not all of it is true. As a nurse and a mom, one of the best sites that I use for any sort of pregnancy and medicine guidance is the CDC (Centers for Disease Control). And with a focus on women and health, the CDC has revamped their website, Treating for Two, chock full of great information on pregnancy and medicine. Visit the website and bookmark now to:
- Learn the basics: Learn why medicine matters in pregnancy and access guidance on how to manage health conditions in pregnancy.
- Find the latest research: Find key research findings by health condition and learn how CDC studies medicine use in pregnancy.
- Download multimedia and tools: Listen to our podcasts, watch our videos, share our infographics, and download posters and fact sheets.
Remember That You’re Treating for Two
It’s a lot of info. I get it. Even when I was nurse and pregnant, it was so many things to remember. Diet. Medicines. Weight. Health. Safety. There are so many factors in growing a tiny human being. But the biggest takeaway? Remember that you’re Treating for Two. So whether it’s that extra brownie or a dose of medicine, everything that you put in your body affects not just you but your baby as well. I’m certainly not saying to avoid all medicines for your pregnancy. But you know your body.
And those pregnancy questions you do have? You have a healthcare provider who can guide you and your family through your pregnancy. Read the facts. Get more tips on medicine and pregnancy at the Treating to Two website.
What is your best tip for pregnant moms? How did you balance medicine and pregnancy?
This post was funded under a grant to the March of Dimes Foundation from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Birth Defect and Developmental Disabilities and the Office for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support. Be sure to follow Raising Whasians for more family tips, delicious recipes, and kid crafts.
This is so important! A lot of people forget that just because a medicine is good for us doesn’t mean it’s good for our babies. We have to be careful.
robin rue says
I only took some Zantac for heartburn (when it was so bad I couldn’t stand it) and a tylenol once or twice when I was pregnant. I was paranoid about putting medications into my body.
The worst part of pregnancy is when you are sick and NEED medicine but can’t do it. I went through 8 pregnancies and had flu’s and colds and couldnt take anything it was awful but worth not harming the baby. This is great info!
Kim Croisant says
It’s been so long since I was pregnant, that I can’t remember if I took any meds or not. It’s scary to think your doctor would prescribe a pregnant lady anything that would harm them. I say do your own research for sure.
Melissa Chapman says
I take medication on a regular basis but to be ultra safe i stopped them when I was pregnant. You don’t know about most meds for sure during pregnancy and nursing. It made the pregnancy tougher but I feel safer avoiding medication during pregnancy.
Danielle Smith says
I’ve bookmarked this for reference and to share with expecting moms. Knowing what medicines can be helpful or harmful during pregnancy is so important. Knowledge is power!
Vera Sweeney says
You can’t put a price on this info! What’s good for the goose, isn’t always good for the goslings! Great, important information!
Marcie Wahrer says
Excellent information for both mom and baby! I took nothing other than Tylenol when I was pregnant and still felt guilty. You can never be too cautious.
Well, my pregnant days are behind me, but for those that are still getting pregnant, I think this information is good to keep on hand. Congrats to you and your lovely family.
I had no idea there was so little research on medication while pregnant. I took antibiotics while I was pregnant, I am pretty sure – at least with my two boys pregnancy. IT’s scare and we need to do more research.
This is such important information. 9 out of 10 taking medicine while pregnant is just too high of a number. Thank you for spreading awareness! Our babies are just too precious to not be informed.
Carol Cassara says
Those are all very important and it’s good to know what medicine is safe for you and your baby as some are too much and could affect the baby. I think this is a great guide for pregnant moms or those planning to get pregnant.
Toni | Boulder Locavore says
These are really helpful tips! It’s important to be extra careful with medicines when you are pregnant. Thanks for sharing these.
Jeanine Carlson says
I had horrid allergies and couldn’t take anything. Thankfully, there are lots of treatments that are safe that I know about now. I still advocate that mommies-to-be need to run EVERYTHING past their doctor before taking. Lots of things that used to be okay have since then been found to have hearbreakingly serious complications for baby!
These are really important tips for women who are pregnant. I need to share this with all my pregger friends!
ellen beck says
Very important facts, and the more you know, the better off you and baby will be. As a nurse, this is great youre helping others and as a blogger it helps you spread the word!