Navigating the complexities of pregnancy can be difficult, and the potential risks associated with taking medication can be daunting. Even if you’re experiencing mild discomfort, the thought of taking medicine can be a cause for concern. DayQuil is a popular over-the-counter cold and flu medicine, and mothers-to-be may be wondering if it’s safe to take during pregnancy. In this blog post, we’ll explore the safety of DayQuil while pregnant, as well as provide tips on how to manage cold and flu symptoms without medication. To get started, let’s explore what DayQuil is, and why it may be a concern during pregnancy.
What to do if you get a cold while pregnant
There are some efficient cold remedies that don’t come from a pharmacy shelf that you can try before taking medication. Here are ways to alleviate symptoms and feel better fast:
Keep eating: It’s common to not have much of an appetite when you have a cold but it is important to eat a healthy diet while you are sick and pregnant.
Rest: While this won’t necessarily shorten the duration of your cold, your body needs rest. Sleeping can prove to be a bit difficult when sick with a cold. Breathe easier by elevating your head with a few pillows. Nasal strips can also help as they gently pull your nasal passages open. They are easy to find, sold over the counter and are drug-free.
Stay active: If you can, do some light to moderate, pregnancy-safe exercises. It will help your body to fight off the cold faster.
Drink lots of fluids: Symptoms of colds like sneezing, runny nose, and fever causes your body to lose fluids that are essential to you and your baby. Warm beverages like tea with honey (which helps to suppress a dry cough) or hot soup with broth are soothing for your symptoms and cold water and juices work fine as well.
Eat foods with vitamin C: Foods like citrus fruits, tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli, spinach, melon, kiwi, and red cabbage are packed with vitamin C which will help to boost your immune system.
Get more zinc: Pregnant women should try to get 11-15 milligrams of zinc each day, including the zinc in prenatal vitamins. Foods like turkey, beef, eggs, yogurt, wheat germ, oatmeal, and pork will also help to boost your immune system.
Use a humidifier: Dry conditions in your home can aggravate your symptoms so using a cold or warm air humidifier at night can really help.
Use saline nose drops, rinses, and sprays. All of these can help to moisten nasal passages, and they’re unmedicated, so they are safe for use while pregnant. We do recommend avoiding neti pots, however, as they can spread germs.
Gargle with warm salt water: Gargling with warm salt water can help to ease a scratchy throat and help control a cough.
Is it a cold or the flu?
The best way to distinguish between a cold and the flu is to consider the common symptoms.
A cold is milder than the flu. Its symptoms come on gradually and typically you only run a low-grade to no fever. It generally starts off with a sore throat that goes away after a day or two, a cold ends with the main symptoms of a runny nose and cough.
Influenza, commonly called the flu, is more severe and the onset is more sudden than a cold. Symptoms include a high fever (typically 101-104 degrees F or higher), headache, chills, a sore throat that typically worsens by the second or third day, intense muscle soreness, and a general feeling of weakness and fatigue. These symptoms, along with sneezing and a cough, can last a couple of weeks or longer.
Cold medications to avoid or use with caution
Your doctor or midwife will probably advise against taking the following medicines while pregnant – or may advise against taking them during particular trimesters – due to the possibility that they could cause birth defects or other pregnancy-related issues:
The decongestants pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine are generally not recommended during the first 13 weeks of pregnancy. After the first trimester, occasional use of these medications (for example, once or twice daily for no more than a day or two) may be safe. More frequent use, however, could be problematic, because these drugs constrict blood vessels. This could decrease blood flow to the placenta and raise your blood pressure. So be sure to check with your healthcare provider first if you want to try either type of decongestant, especially if youve already been diagnosed with high blood pressure.
The expectorant guaifenesin (Mucinex) thins mucus secretions in the respiratory passages, making it easier to cough them up. While one study found an increased risk of inguinal hernias in babies exposed to this drug, most studies dont suggest that guaifenesin increases the risk of birth defects. But since there hasnt been a lot of research on the drug, your provider may recommend avoiding it in the first trimester.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), including aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, and sodium salicylate, are usually not considered safe to use for pain relief during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns against using NSAIDs after week 20, as they can cause rare but serious kidney problems in unborn babies and lower a mothers amniotic fluid levels.
Additionally, keep in mind that herbal supplements, like echinacea, haven’t been thoroughly researched in pregnant women (and some are dangerous), so avoid them unless your provider has approved a specific supplement.
Be aware that some liquid cold medications contain up to 4 percent alcohol. 75 percent. Look for products that are labeled “alcohol-free. “.
Can I take DayQuil during pregnancy?
Medications to avoid during pregnancy
Decongestants like Sudafed and DayQuil are generally cautioned against after the first trimester and only in a limited amount.
Is DayQuil and Nyquil safe during pregnancy?
Throughout your pregnancy, avoid using liquid Nyquil products, as they contain alcohol. You should be safe using all other Nyquil products during your pregnancy.
What cold medicine is safe during pregnancy?
Pregnancy-Safe Cold & Flu Medication
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) Safe during the entire pregnancy. Take only as needed. …
Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed) Safe in the second and third trimester. …
Chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton) Safe during pregnancy. …
Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) Safe throughout pregnancy.
Can you take daytime cold medicine while pregnant?
Yes, many over-the-counter cough and cold medications are considered safe for pregnant women and their developing babies.