What Can You Take For Sore Throat When Pregnant

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.
  • As stated above, if you prefer to stay away from over-the-counter medicines altogether, there are natural alternatives to a sore throat that you might feel more comfortable with, like gargling a warm mixture of salt water and baking soda, and drinking a soothing herbal tea like Chamomile or hot water with lemon and honey, according to Healthline. To boost your immune system and fight off future infections, practice good hand hygiene, eat plenty of healthy foods, take a prenatal vitamin, drink water and get plenty of sleep.

    But there are many treatment options for a sore throat, according to Dr. Kecia Gaither, an OB-GYN, womens health expert, and Director of Perinatal Services for NYC Health+Hospitals/Lincoln. Its just important to first determine what is causing the sore throat. In an interview with Romper, Gaither writes, “A sore throat can be an indicator of many types of clinical entities. There are important points to consider: has anyone else been sick around you? Is there an associated fever or headache? Swollen tonsils or white spots on tonsils? Have you had nausea or vomiting? Do you have difficulty breathing, a cough, or ear pain?”

    There are also medicines you should avoid completely during pregnancy, regardless of ailment. Sarah Johnson, an RN and the health ambassador for Family Assets, tells Romper, “Pregnant women should avoid ibuprofen, and naproxen, especially once they reach the third trimester, to mitigate the risks associated with early delivery, low birth weight, and other complications.” Additionally, Dr. Danielle Plummer, a doctor of pharmacy in Las Vegas writes, “Choose products without preservatives or alcohol, and always use the least amount for the shortest amount of time that will provide relief.” Johnson and Plummer also concur on the use of Tylenol for a simple sore throat. “Acetaminophen — e.g. Tylenol — is generally considered to be the safest analgesic and antipyretic to take,” writes Johnson.

    Ultimately, the labels that state “check with your doctor” are there for a reason. Call your healthcare provider before taking any over-the-counter medications if you have any additional symptoms or are concerned that this might be something more serious than a simple cough.

    Pregnancy presents a fair amount of questions when it comes to how to treat yourself if you get sick. Even something as minor as a sore throat can make a pregnant woman pause before taking any over-the-counter medications. But what sore throat medicines are acceptable for pregnancy? Most, if not all, advise consulting your healthcare provider before taking anything, because while many drugs have an excellent safety profile, some have unproven safety or have been known to adversely affect the fetus, per American Family Physician. In other words, you can never be too careful. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that pregnant women are more likely to contract colds and flus due to a weaker immune system during pregnancy.

    How to manage cold & sore throat in 3rd trimester of pregnancy?- Dr. Nupur Sood

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