Pregnancy and discomfort usually go hand in hand. But when discomfort progresses into pain, what medications can expectant women use for relief? Luckily, safe painkiller does exist, but as with anything else during pregnancy, diligence is very necessary. Furthermore, expectant should discuss all medications that she takes—including over-the-counter (OTC) drugs—with her OB-GYN.
Analgesics during pregnancy
Pain medications, also known as analgesics, can be obtained over-the-counter and/or by prescription. Generally, doctor-prescribed painkillers are usually more potent than OTCs, though they also present some potential dangers, too, to the developing foetus. Thus, OTC analgesics, are not risk-free. Certain OTC prescription painkillers are there, which increase the likelihood of birth defects and complications during labour or delivery.
The Use of OTC Painkillers by Pregnant Women
Over-the-counter pain medication while pregnant list comes in following manner, based on their active ingredient:
- Well researched by scientists, Acetaminophen, which is the active ingredient in Tylenol, is considered safe during pregnancy and used primarily for fever, aches, headaches, pains and sore throat. It can be used through all three trimesters of pregnancy.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, and Advil,Aleve (naproxen) and Motrin (ibuprofen).
- Aspirin, has salicylic acid as its active ingredient, thus, it should not be taken by pregnant mothers because it can cause problems for both the mother and the baby. Also, if aspirin is taken before delivery, it can lead to increased bleeding at the time of labour. Occasionally, aspirin may be prescribed for pregnant women who have certain other medical issues, like preeclampsia.
- Ibuprofen and Naproxen medicines are safer NSAID options; though, both of them should be used with caution while pregnant. These medicines are considered safe during the first two trimesters, but not during the final trimester of pregnancy because they can also cause heavy bleeding during delivery.
Prescription Painkillers during Pregnancy
The more common prescribed painkillers are categorized in opioids. These are derivatives of the poppy plant. All opioids are considered as narcotics that are controlled substances and also illegal to use without a doctor’s authorization. Analgesics of this strength are generally used for intense pain resulting from injuries, dental work, and surgery or migraine headaches.These prescription medicines are available in several different forms or brand names, such as codeine, Percocet (oxycodone and acetaminophen), Roxanol (morphine), oxycontin(oxycodone),Duragesic (fentanyl), Demerol (meperidine), and Vicodin (hydrocodone and acetaminophen). Doctors allow the use of these medicines sporadically in pregnant women when the benefits of the same outweigh the potential risks.
Consult withDoctorbefore Taking Pain Medication
Always remember to discuss all pain medication pregnancy that a pregnant woman is taking with the OB-GYN. Furthermore, never take a prescription and/or over-the-counter analgesics without having first spoken with own physician. Like, Opiates are potent analgesics with adverse effects.And, there is no evidence like a safe level of narcotic use during pregnancy. Risks to the foetus include stillbirth, miscarriage or premature delivery. At birth, the baby is also at risk of low birth weight, breathing difficulties or extreme drowsiness, which can lead to feeding issues.