A Guide to Taking Medications During Your Pregnancy
One-third of pregnant Australian women, or those who had children until eleven years of age, confirmed that they took over the counter or prescription drugs during pregnancy. There are many reasons as to why this may occur, as some women may have taken medication when they didn't know they were pregnant or may not have been aware of the risks of some drugs on their baby. It's common knowledge that smoking and drinking alcohol may negatively impact a baby during pregnancy, and large quantities of coffee are not advisable during pregnancy and breastfeeding, but it's important to also understand which drugs are unsafe and other options that can be used in their place.
Know your antibiotics
Antibiotics should generally be avoided during pregnancy, but your doctor can advise if they are thought to be the last course of action. Tetracycline and Streptomycin should be avoided, as the latter could cause hearing loss in your baby. Levofloxacin and Ciprofloxacin can potentially cause muscle and skeletal growth problems in the baby, so again should be avoided.
Protect against flu
It's wise to avoid becoming ill during pregnancy if possible with a balanced diet, lots of water, rest and some exercise. The seasonal influenza vaccination is safe and free for pregnant women and can be given during any stage of pregnancy. It is important to have the vaccination as contracting the flu during pregnancy can lead to premature delivery and potentially even death in newborns and very young babies. It protects both you and your unborn child. If you do feel unwell, increase your Vitamin C consumption, add garlic to your diet and drink honey and lemon tea and avoid cold and flu medications.
Morning sickness options
Not all women will suffer from morning sickness and it doesn't always occur in the morning. It can be caused by an empty stomach, so keep dry crackers and water by the bed to have when you wake up to help quell nausea. Doctors may prescribe Pyridoxine and ginger tablets during pregnancy, but they may not help to control morning sickness. Ginger tea or peppermint oil may help and rubber bands called sea bands that can ease nausea as they help by massaging acupuncture points on the wrist. Ginger tea or peppermint oil may also help.
The power of acupuncture
Acupuncture is safe to have during pregnancy and is reported to help with morning sickness, sciatica, constipation, headaches and pelvic and lower back pain. So instead of suffering or reaching for ibuprofen or aspirin tablets, which are not advisable for pregnant women, invest in some acupuncture. One study showed that depression is common among pregnant women and 63% of the women who received depression-specific acupuncture responded to the treatment. However, if this is not effective in managing depression, then some anti-depressants, such as those don't contain paroxetine, may be safe to take. This should be discussed with a doctor.
If you do have a health complaint during pregnancy it's best to speak to a doctor about treatment. There are ways to try and prevent illness and some natural ways to treat health issues. Consider what you and your baby need and don't take any risks, especially when it comes to stopping the current medication as you may need to stay on it during your pregnancy.