Will Taking Allergy Medicine Dry Up My Milk
There is a significant concern amongst parents regarding the risk of allergy medication drying up milk. The fears are not unfounded as some antihistamines can, and do, dry up milk.
In fact, some parents use specific allergy medication to speed up the weaning process.
Luckily rarely will small, infrequent doses of allergy medications negatively impact your milk supply. And the medications that post the most significant risk to milk production will be mentioned below.
Various types of medications are used to treat allergies, and there numerous ways to ingest them. The mechanisms by which each allergy medicine works will depend on the kind of medication and the method of ingestion.
Home Remedies For Allergies:
Some allergy symptoms improve with simple home remedies, depending on the type of allergy you have:
- For sinus congestion and hay fever: It usually gets better by rinsing the sinuses with a solution of salt and water.
- For airborne allergies: You should not be exposed to dust, dirt, or pet dander, by washing brushes, replacing carpets with hard floors, and always cleaning the house with a vacuum cleaner.
- For mold allergy symptoms: Reduce humidity in damp places, such as the bathroom or kitchen, by using ventilation fans, and repair any leaks inside or outside the home to reduce moisture in places.
- For chest allergies: Drink fenugreek tea to relieve head and chest congestion and coughing.
- For sore, itchy throat and cough: Drink hot lemon juice with honey.
There are suitable and safe allergy medications while breastfeeding, but you should be careful not to combine more than one prescription, and it is important to tell your doctor that you are breastfeeding:
If You’re Breastfeeding And Looking For Relief From Seasonal Allergies Here’s How To Know What Medications Are Safe For You And Baby
The American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology reports that as much as 30 percent of the population worldwide is affected by “allergic rhinitis” . That’s an awful lot of people walking around with scratchy throats, runny noses, and watery, itchy eyes during allergy season!
If you are a breastfeeding mom who suffers from seasonal allergies, it’s likely you’ll have a bout with them while nursing your little one. And if your allergies are severe, you’re sure to be left wondering what you can take for a little relief.
Good news! There are many options for breastfeeding moms to get some relief during allergy season, and many are the easy-to-find, over-the-counter products that are a godsend for most allergy sufferers.
The problem is, many breastfeeding moms mistakenly believe they can’t take most medications while breastfeeding. But this actually isn’t the caseat least not most of the time.
As the Academy of American Pediatric points out, “Many mothers are inappropriately advised to discontinue breastfeeding or avoid taking essential medications because of fears of adverse effects on their infants.” The AAP goes on to explain that only a small proportion of medications are not advised for breastfeeding moms because they are associated with adverse effects on infants, but the majority should not pose a problem.
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Allergy Medicine While Breastfeeding:
1/ Antihistamines: They are considered safe except for some old medicines such as diphenhydramine , which may cause drowsiness and numbness in your child, while medicines such as fexofenadine or do not have the same side effects,
2/ Decongestants: Medications that contain pseudoephedrine, which is found in medications , should be used with caution, because pseudoephedrine can reduce the milk supply in the breast.
Types Of Allergy Medications
Antihistamines: Stops the histamine response by directly blocking your body’s histamine receptors.
: Contracts blood vessels, thereby decreasing swelling and inflammation in the nasal passages.
Corticosteroids: Similar to decongestants, corticosteroids provide temporary relief, but rather than narrowing blood vessels, the easing of symptoms is due to the steroid’s synthetic substance similar to cortisol.
Mast Cell Stabilizers: Prevent the release of histamine by blocking cell degranulation and stabilizing mast cells.
Leukotriene inhibitors: relieves allergy symptoms by stoping the Leukotriene chemical thus blocking 5-lipoxygenase activity
Immunotherapy: Habituatlizes your body to the allergen by gradually increasing the dosage of exposure
Emergency epinephrine: reverses symptoms a life-threatening allergic reaction by constricting blood vessels and raising blood pressure.
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Is It Safe For A Breastfeeding Mom To Take Allergy Medicine
Yes, there are allergy medications that are safe to take while you’re breastfeeding.
Just be careful, because over-the-counter allergy medications are often combined with other drugs in one liquid or pill. To limit your baby’s exposure, it’s best to avoid products that tackle more than one symptom at once or that have more than one active ingredient listed.
Antihistamines, which alleviate allergies, are generally considered safe. But keep in mind that so-called first-generation antihistamines such as diphenhydramine and chlorpheniramine can potentially cause sedation in your baby , while the second- and third-generation medications such as loratadine and fexofenadine are less likely to. Your pediatrician may have a preference as to which one you try first.
Learn more about the safety of commonly used medications during breastfeeding.
BabyCenter’s editorial team is committed to providing the most helpful and trustworthy pregnancy and parenting information in the world. When creating and updating content, we rely on credible sources: respected health organizations, professional groups of doctors and other experts, and published studies in peer-reviewed journals. We believe you should always know the source of the information you’re seeing. Learn more about our editorial and medical review policies.
March of Dimes. 2016. Keeping breast milk safe and healthy.
Good News Breastfeeding Moms You Dont Have To Suffer Through Seasonal Allergies
Lyndsey Frey – WriterSeptember 7, 2019
Taking care of your baby is hard enough. Add a runny, stuffy nose, watery and itchy eyes, scratchy throat and constant sneezing from seasonal allergies, and its no easy feat.
With fall allergy season ramping up, the good news is breastfeeding moms dont have to suffer through without relief.
Antihistamines, which alleviate allergies, are generally considered safe, but its always best to check with your provider before you take any medication, said Liz Maseth, a nurse and Internationally Board certified lactation consultant at Akron Childrens Hospital. Your doctor will be able to discuss with you whether its safe and if there are any side effects of the drug to you and your baby.
But before you reach for an antihistamine for relief, Maseth offers these tips to ensure youre keeping you and your baby safe.
- Treat only the symptoms you have. Avoid a combination drug like cold and allergy or an allergy plus decongestant when a single one can do the job.
- If possible, take the short-acting form of drugs. Short-acting forms are generally better than long-acting varieties because peak concentrations decrease quicker.
- Take the medication right AFTER you breastfeed, so baby doesnt get as high a volume of the medication, and only as needed.
- Use nasal spray, steam treatments or eye drops, instead of oral medications whenever possible.
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What Can I Take For Pain & Fever While Breastfeeding
Ibuprofen : The transfer of ibuprofen in breast milk is well studied as it is a common choice for postpartum pain. Very little of this medication makes it into the milk . In addition, this drug is given directly to babies at much higher doses than this.2 Ibuprofen is the preferred analgesic in breastfeeding mothers. Do not exceed 3.2 grams/day. Common Trade Names: Advil, Nuprin, Motrin.
Acetaminophen : Acetaminophen is compatible with breastfeeding as only small amounts are secreted into breast milk. This is given directly to infants in doses much greater than they would receive incidentally through the breastmilk. Acetaminophen is commonly included in combination products. Do not exceed 4 grams/day. Common Trade Name: Tylenol.
Naproxen : Naproxen is less well studied than the other drugs in the same class. It is secreted into the breastmilk, but apparently not in quantities that would harm an infant. However, naproxen takes longer to be eliminated from the body than the other NSAIDs and has a greater potential to damage an infants cardiovascular system, kidneys, and gastrointestinal tract in the event of an overdose. Short-term use of naproxen postpartum, or infrequent or occasional use should be compatible with breastfeeding. Do not exceed 1 gram/day. Common trade names: Naprox, Naprosyn, Aleve.
Allergy Medicine While Breastfeeding: Is It Safe To Take
It is pretty challenging to take allergy medicine while breastfeeding. For your safety and that of your infant, you must know which medications are safe to take and specific ones that suit your current condition.
That is why it is essential to always keep in touch with your doctor before taking an OTC allergy medicine.
This blog post will explain the details of allergy medicines while breastfeeding.
Like with other medications, it is vital to speak with a healthcare provider before taking any new allergy medicine while breastfeeding.
The allergy season can linger for a long while in the Midwest region. And these allergies can affect your ability to feel your best while caring for your baby.
While it is easy to walk up to a drug store or pharmacy and get any OTC allergy medicines, you may need to apply caution in treating your allergy symptoms while breastfeeding.
Some of the most common questions breastfeeding mothers ask include Which allergy medications are considered safe to take? and What medication will decrease my milk supply?
Many allergy medicines are considered safe for use while nursing and will not affect your breast milk supply.
Notwithstanding, it helps identify which allergy symptom you are trying to treat when you decide to take a medication.
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Alternatives To Taking Benadryl While Breastfeeding
Luckily, for breastfeeding mothers, there are plenty of safe alternatives to taking Benadryl while breastfeeding. The best options are antihistamines that arent sedatives since they are less likely to have a sedative effect on the baby. Claritin is one allergy medicine that has been studied during breastfeeding, and its shown to pass only marginally into breastmilk. Do note, however, that Claritin-D contains pseudoephedrine and can reduce milk supply.
If your doctor does advise you to take Benadryl for some reason, you can take it before bedtime after youve just breastfed your baby, or you might take it while youre breastfeeding so it can start clearing your system before the next feeding. Other medicines you might take can include antihistamine nasal sprays and eyedrops. There are also decongestants that can be used during breastfeeding as well. However, many decongestant allergy medicines do have pseudoephedrine, so be sure to check the labels. Nasal decongestant sprays that can be used while breastfeeding include Afrin and Tyzine. For some women, a doctor may prescribe corticosteroids, which suppress inflammation related to allergies. Allergy immunotherapy is an option during breastfeeding as well. Immunotherapy is a series of shots given several times a week for anywhere from three to six months, which helps train the bodys immune system to stop attacking allergens.
How To Know Which Cold And Allergy Meds Are Safe
Check with your healthcare provider first if you’re breastfeeding and plan to take medication. Avoid taking unnecessary medications, such as herbal medications, high-dose vitamins, and unusual supplements.
Also, ask your doctor about timing. For instance, taking the medication immediately after breastfeeding might help minimize your baby’s exposure. However, different drugs peak in breast milk at different times.
Cold and allergy meds that are safe while breastfeeding include:
Some medications to avoid while breastfeeding include:
- Antihistamines, like Benadryl, have negative effects on breastfeeding and should be avoided if possible. Medicines like this decrease milk supply if used at high doses and for long periods of time.
- Sudafed can decrease milk supply and should also be avoided if possible.
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What Can I Take For Allergies & Sinus Congestion While Breastfeeding
Diphenhydramine : Antihistamine. Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine that is often used in cough, cold, sinus, and allergy formulations. It is also the main component in many sleep aids, including nighttime versions of cold medications, as well as motion sickness pills. Although the levels are low in breastmilk, this medication can cause sedation and therefore is not ideal in breastfeeding mothers. If you are taking a sedating medication, be sure to have support in caring for your infant. There are many non-sedating antihistamines on the market, which are likely a better choice. These include cetirizine , loratadine , and fexofenadine . There is some anecdotal evidence that diphenhydramine can suppress milk production, but this pattern is not supported by the medical literature. Common trade names: Benadryl, Tylenol PM.
Chlorpheniramine and Brompheniramine : Antihistamine. These medicines are similar to diphenhydramine, but they have fewer studies about breast milk safety. They are heavily sedating and not recommended. If you are taking a sedating medication, be sure to have support in caring for your infant. The non-sedating antihistamines mentioned above are still better choices. Common trade names: Aller-Chlor, C.P.M., Chlor-Phen, Chlor-Trimeton Allergy, Teldrin HBP.
The Risks Of Allergy Medicine While Nursing
The risks associated with allergy medicine come from the fact that there are not many scientific studies on pregnant and nursing people. This is because of the risk to the baby. Because of this, there often isnt enough information to say whether a drug is completely safe and would not have any side effects.
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How To Prevent Future Allergic Reactions
Allergies dont disappear into thin air after treatment. They can come back again another time, be it in a few days or in a few years. However, you can still protect yourself from allergic reactions.
You might have already removed all the allergens in your home. But sometimes, these allergens can appear elsewhere, like at work, at the park, at a party, or at your kids school. For this, you need to build up your immune system.
Keeping your surroundings clean, like at home, can also keep you from getting sick. Sweeping away dust and wiping away mold can lower the risk of future reactions.
Finally, always be keen about what you eat and drink. Dont forget to read the labels all the time. If possible, its better to prepare your own meals at home, where you can control your ingredients.
Trying to avoid all allergens can feel tedious. But its far better to be careful than to regret being sick with a stuffy nose and itchy skin.
What Medicines Can I Take While I’m Breastfeeding
Medicines that can be taken while breastfeeding include:
- the painkiller paracetamol you should check with a GP or your midwife before taking other types of painkillers, such as ibuprofen
You can use some methods of contraception and some cold remedies, but not all.
Always check with a GP, your midwife, health visitor or a pharmacist, who can advise you.
It’s fine to have dental treatments, local anaesthetics, vaccinations and most operations.
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Do I Need To Take Medication
No medication can rid you of allergies, but there are many medication options available to help reduce allergy symptoms.
Many people choose to go the medication route to get relief of symptoms however, it is not necessary. There are homeopathic remedies for allergies, but because of the limited information on homeopathic remedies and breastfeeding AND because homeopathic medicine is so specific to the individual, it’s outside the scope of this blog to discuss.
Benefits Of Breastfeeding For Immune Health
Breastfeeding has a number of benefits for the baby and the nursing parent. Your body produces antibodies that are passed to your baby, which then protect them from your cold or viral infection.
If you are too sick or weak to breastfeed, you might try pumping milk to keep up your supply.
Supplementing with baby formula is also an option, and it’s absolutely safe. If you are unable to breastfeed, your baby can receive the nutrients they need from formula.
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Allergy Treatments Include The Following:
Avoiding allergens: The doctor helps you identify your allergy triggers, and then avoid them. One of most essential thing is to avoid allergies and reduce their symptoms as much as possible.
Medications: Allergy medicines can help ease symptoms depending on your sensitivities.
These medications include: Pills, liquid, nasal sprays or eye dropsThe safest of these forms for a nursing mother are:
- Eye drops: Eye drops designed to relieve cold and allergy symptoms are compatible with breastfeeding.
- Nasal sprays: Nasal sprays are generally compatible with breastfeeding.
Is It Safe To Take Allergy Medicine While Breastfeeding
Many people have heard that its not safe to take any medication while pregnant or breastfeeding. This is true for certain medications, but some allergy medications are safe during breastfeeding. There is no need to suffer through the symptoms associated with allergies while breastfeeding.
There are three things to consider when it comes to taking allergy medications while breastfeeding:
- What effect the drug will have
- What effect it will have on the baby
- How it might affect milk production
Always get advice from a health care provider before taking any medicine while breastfeeding. For something very minimal, health care providers will recommend saline nose or eye drops to alleviate stuffiness or itchy, dry eyes.
Another alternative to treat allergies while nursing is allergy injections or allergen immunotherapy. According to the Joint Task Force on Practice Parameters, There is no evidence of an increased risk of prescribing or continuing allergen immunotherapy for a parent while breastfeeding and no risk for the breastfed child.
For continued uncontrolled symptoms, there are also oral allergy medications that are safe to take while breastfeeding.
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