How Can You Control Your Allergy During Pregnancy?
If a woman is struggling with allergy during pregnancy, she has to inform her healthcare provider about all the medications, even over-the-counter ones, she is using to ease the symptoms. Although the majority of allergy medicines are usually safe during pregnancy, it is always better to check with your doctor to make sure everything is fine.
Normally, pregnant women can safely take such allergy medications as loratadine (Claritin), cetirizine (Zyrtec), diphenhydramine (Benadryl), fexofenadine (Allegra), or chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton), as well as nasal sprays like Nasalcrom (cromolyn sodium) and Rhinocort (steroid). However, you should always discuss with your doctor before taking any kind of medication. In general, nasal sprays cause less risks, since they only focus on your nose and don’t go further into your body.
Yet, oral decongestants are contraindicated during the first trimester of pregnancy, due to potential birth defects. You should also be careful with antihistamines combined with a decongestant. Since it’s not clear whether such a combination is safe in pregnant women, experts recommend that you avoid antihistamine nasal sprays.
Is It Better to Stop Using Allergy Medications During Pregnancy?
It is always healthier to live without medication when they are not necessary. Therefore, if your symptoms are not severe, the doctor may recommend you skipping your allergy drugs.
In some cases, however, allergy symptoms may be more severe than the possible risks for a baby. Thus, if your allergy tends to interfere with the quality of your life (e.g. making it hard to sleep, causing breathing difficulties, or triggering itchy skin rashes), it may be safer, as for you, as for the baby, to take the medication and ease the symptoms.
Besides, having asthma requires the use of medications as prescribed by your doctor. Otherwise, uncontrolled asthma attacks may lead to serious complications in pregnant women.
Is It Safe to Take Allergy Shots When Pregnant?
Women, who had been taking allergy shots before conceiving, can continue taking them during pregnancy, too. However, it is not recommended to start using allergy shots when you are already pregnant. This means that if you are interested in trying this type of allergy treatment, you should wait until you’ve given birth to your baby.
How to Manage Allergy Symptoms at Home?
Symptoms resulting from allergic reactions may be extremely annoying and even life-threatening. Unfortunately, there is no way to cure allergies or sensitivities. According to specialists, the best way to prevent an allergic reaction is to stay away from potential triggers. If you are sensitive to a certain allergen, minimizing your exposure to it may help to control your symptoms.
Rinsing your nose with a neti pot, you can alleviate nasal congestion and other symptoms. For this procedure, you can use an over-the-counter saltwater solution, or distilled, sterile water that was previously boiled and cooled.
Some of the allergy symptoms may also be reduced with a saline nasal spray or nasal strips keeping your nasal passages open at night. Both products are available over the counter.
If your allergies are causing sleeping troubles, you can try raising your head of the bed by 30-45 degrees. This can help to relieve your symptoms for a while.
Finally, make sure to get enough of physical activity during the day. Experts consider exercising a good way to treat nasal inflammation.
These are just a few tips that may help to control allergies without medications. Working together with your doctor, you can learn more about your condition and determine the best treatment option for you and your future baby.