Can I Take Allergy Medication If I’m Pregnant?

Pregnancy can be an incredibly exciting, yet nerve-wracking experience, as expecting mothers navigate a variety of changes to their bodies and lifestyle. One of the key components of a successful pregnancy is being aware of the risks associated with various medications and non-prescription drugs. One such medication that needs careful consideration is cetirizine, an antihistamine used to treat allergies and hay fever. In this blog post, we’ll explore the question “Can I take cetirizine while pregnant?”, providing key information about the safety and efficacy of cetirizine during pregnancy. We’ll discuss the relevant safety data, potential side effects, and discuss any alternative treatment options for pregnant women. By the end of this post, readers should have a better understanding of the potential risks and benefits of taking cetirizine while pregnant.

Is it safer to skip allergy medication altogether when I’m pregnant?

If your symptoms are not severe, your doctor might suggest alternative treatments. You could use saline nasal sprays or allergy-proof your home.

However, taking medication may be better for your health and the health of your baby if allergy symptoms are a serious issue—making it difficult to sleep, for example.

You must take the medication exactly as directed if you have allergic asthma. Uncontrolled asthma can cause serious problems during pregnancy.

There are no studies that examine the use of cetirizine while nursing. No studies have demonstrated that antihistamines actually cause women to produce less breast milk, despite the possibility that they might do so. Cetirizine is less likely than some other antihistamines to make the mother or the infant sleepy. Cetirizine may therefore be preferred for use during breastfeeding over antihistamines that do cause sleepiness. Babies should be observed for indications that they are not overly sleepy after prolonged use. You should get in touch with the baby’s doctor if you think they may be experiencing any symptoms, such as sleepiness. Make sure to discuss all of your breastfeeding concerns with your doctor.

OTIS/MotherToBaby encourages inclusive and person-centered language. Although mothers are still mentioned in our name, we are updating our resources to use more inclusive language. When the terms “mother” or “maternal” are used, they refer to a pregnant person. When the terms “father” or “paternal” are used, it refers to a sperm donor.

Cetirizine is an antihistamine. Antihistamines are medications used for allergies and cold symptoms. Cetirizine can be used to treat allergy symptoms such as itchy throat, watery eyes, runny nose, and sneezing. Cetirizine is available without a prescription under the brand names Zyrtec® and Reactine®. Levocetirizine, the active ingredient in cetirizine, is found in the prescription drug Xyzal ®. Given their similarities, levocetirizine and cetirizine should produce similar pregnancy results.

Before making any changes to this medication, consult your doctor. It’s critical to consider the advantages of treating allergy symptoms while pregnant. Treating allergy symptoms in women with asthma may lessen asthma symptoms and the need for additional asthma medications. Additionally, allergy management can enhance emotional stability and sleep quality.

In a new CDC study, researchers reviewed more than 50 published scientific articles to see if there was a risk of birth defects from using antihistamines, like allergy medication, during pregnancy. Researchers found the evidence to be generally reassuring: most antihistamines do not appear to be linked to birth defects. However, researchers need to study certain antihistamine medications further to determine if they increase the risk for birth defects. You can read the article’s abstract hereexternal icon. Read more below for a summary of the findings from this article.

More than 50 scientific studies that examined the connection between antihistamine use during pregnancy and birth defects were reviewed by researchers. They assessed the articles in accordance with the following standards: how researchers chose the participants in their studies, how they determined the use of antihistamines during pregnancy, and how they identified infants with birth defects.

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What allergy medicine is safe to take during pregnancy?

These over-the-counter allergy meds have no known harmful effects during pregnancy when you take them according to the package directions.
  • Allegra (fexofenadine)
  • Benadryl (diphenhydramine)
  • Claritin (loratadine)
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine)

Is Cetrine safe in pregnancy?

Cetirizine is unlikely to cause other pregnancy complications. Studies on a small number of pregnancies did not find a higher chance for birth defects, preterm delivery (having the baby before 37 weeks), or low birth weight.

What is the pregnancy category of cetirizine?

If a second generation agent has to be used then loratadine or cetirizine should be preferred as they have been widely studied for possible teratogenic effects and have been found to be nonteratogenic till date. Both these agents are pregnancy category B agents.

Does cetirizine cross the placenta?

Cetirizine / pseudoephedrine Pregnancy Warnings

There are no controlled data in human pregnancy. Cetirizine: Animal studies at up to 220 times the maximum recommended human dose did not show teratogenicity. It is unknown if this drug crosses the placenta, but the low molecular weight (about 462) makes this likely.

Ask The Doctor with Dr. Rene Leon – Is it safe to take allergy medications during pregnancy?

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