Managing Allergies During Pregnancy

Morning sickness, back aches, and fatigue should be enough to deal with during pregnancy, but if you add in allergy symptoms, oh please! If you’re not sure what medications are safe for you and your growing baby, here’s what you need to know.

Pregnant woman holding a pill

The Bad News About Allergies During Pregnancy

If you normally suffer from seasonal allergies, they may get worse during your pregnancy. The itchy nose, congestion, constant sneezing, sinus pressure, and all the other unpleasant symptoms may seem more nasty than normal.

If you begin to have allergic reactions, it is best to ask Birmingham Obstetrics & Gynecology what is safe before using any medications you have on hand.

What Is Safe And Not Safe

It is always best to weigh the risks and the benefits of any medication.

If you are suffering enough that you need medication, it is safe to use the following:

  • Medicated nasal sprays like Nasonex or Flonase are safe to use.
  • Antihistamines like Claritin and Zyrtec are considered safe.
  • If you have been getting allergy shots, it is safe to continue, but do not begin them during pregnancy.
  • Benadryl and ChlorTrimeton are considered safe.

Avoid the following:

  • Decongestants should be avoided like Pseudoephedene (Sudafed), especially in the first trimester. You can take them later in the pregnancy as long as you don’t have high blood pressure.
  • If the medication includes a D in the name, like Claritin D, this is to be avoided.

Other Ways To Manage Allergies During Pregnancy

Avoiding your allergy triggers is the best advice. Limit time outside, keep the windows closed, and use your AC. Stay inside between 5 AM and 10 AM when pollen levels are the highest.

For mold and animal dander, open the windows when these triggers are at a low level.

Use a humidifier to moisten the air and your nasal passages. Try a saline nasal spray.

Invest in a quality air purifier.

Wear OTC nasal strips at night to help reduce symptoms.

Sometimes It Isn’t Allergies

Sometimes those allergy symptoms like a runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing, and sinus pressure are really due to hormonal changes in your body. This occurs mostly in the last trimester and it is called pregnancy rhinitis. Antihistamines won’t work for you, but expect the symptoms will resolve after you give birth.

Contact Birmingham Obstetrics & Gynecology at (205) 933-8334 for additional recommendations and options if your symptoms do not resolve during pregnancy.

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