Pregnancy is a beautiful journey for a woman growing a whole new life inside her. However, as precious as these nine months are, they call for extra care and caution for the mother-to-be. Mental, physical, or emotional health impacts your baby's growth. Therefore, everything you consume, be it food or medicines, must be evaluated to see if it is safe for your baby. So, if you have a common cold and cough, you must know which is the safest and best cough syrup during pregnancy in India.
Hence, in this article, we will guide you through cough and cold medicines you can consume during pregnancy that is safe for your newborn baby.
HOW TO KNOW ABOUT COLDS DURING PREGNANCY?
There are two hundred different types of viruses that can cause common colds. These germs typically spread when someone sneezes or coughs and can live on hands and surfaces for 24 hours. Moreover, a common cold virus can enter your body through the nose, mouth, or eyes. The common cold and cough in pregnancy symptoms can last up to three weeks and can include the following (1).
Common Cold and Cough Symptoms
2. Runny nose
3. Stuffy nose
4. Watery eyes more than usual
5. Sore throat
6. Post-nasal drip
Just to let you know, a cold can easily be confused with the flu as these two infections share many common symptoms. However, unlike a cold, the flu can have more severe symptoms such as -
2. Body aches
Disclaimer: A fever in the early stages of pregnancy is often linked to congenital disabilities. Hence, immediately talk to your healthcare provider if you notice a fever at a given point during your pregnancy.
CAUSES OF COLD AND DRY COUGH DURING PREGNANCY
Significant changes in the functioning of your immune system can make you susceptible to common cold and flu symptoms. As mentioned earlier, several types of viruses cause colds, the most common being rhinoviruses. On the other hand, viral or bacterial infections in the respiratory tract due to a cold can cause coughing during pregnancy. The cough can be aggravated further because of the irritation caused by air pollutants, which is a common occurrence in various cities across India. A viral or bacterial infection can sometimes follow a cold, so always look for signs of any infection, such as fever, yellow, green, or red mucus. If the bacterial infections are getting worse, they may need an antibiotic; however, in other cases taking the best cough syrup during pregnancy in India provides relief.
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HOW TO PREVENT GETTING A COLD DURING PREGNANCY?
Prevention is better than cure. So, the best way to prevent catching a cold and cough during pregnancy is to lead a healthy lifestyle, which keeps the immune system strong, thereby preventing infections. Hygiene is another important aspect of preventing cold and dry cough during pregnancy. As mentioned earlier, the most common way to catch a cold is by touching someone who has a cold or an object they've recently handled. Hence,
following good hygiene rules can help prevent colds from spreading. You can check the following points to avoid getting cold during pregnancy.
1. Regularly wash hands
2. Stay away from those suffering from a cold and cough as much as possible.
3. Have a good sleep routine.
4. Doing a bit of exercise daily can help strengthen your immune system.
5. Avoid overeating, and switch to eating healthy and hygienic food.
6. During pregnancy, consuming fruits, especially grapes, can help protect your immunity well.
7. Keep your surroundings clean.
MEDICINES FOR COUGH
While finding medication for coughing during pregnancy is essential to choose wisely. There are several home remedies that you can try out before jumping to over-the-counter medicines. For instance, inhaling steam, taking hot showers, having ginger tea, and so on. However, depending on your symptoms, your doctor will be the best to decide if you need any medication or not. However, we have listed down some of the safest medicines for cough-
1. Benadryl, which has a Diphenhydramine base and is the best cough syrup during pregnancy in India
2. Dextromethorphan (Delsym, Robitussin) helps to lessen how much you cough by lowering activity in the part of the brain that causes coughing.
3. Guaifenesin (Mucinex) helps to thin the mucus in your lungs, so it's easier to cough up.
Disclaimer: These are just a list of medicines provided for referral purposes. It is essential to talk to your doctor before you consume any of the above.
MEDICINES FOR COLD
Common colds can cause a lot of irritation; however, it is always best to treat it with home remedies at first. However, if the common cold symptoms persist, you must talk to your doctor, who will prescribe the medication. For ease of reference, we have listed pregnancy-safe medicine for colds below -
● Older (1st generation) antihistamines are used as a first choice to relieve a runny nose while pregnant.
● Newer (2nd generation) antihistamines are good alternatives to the above consumed after the first trimester of pregnancy.
● Intranasal corticosteroids are nasal sprays that are safe for pregnant women.
MEDICINES FOR CONGESTION
Yet again, home remedies should be your first preference over medication. These remedies include drinking plenty of fluids, such as water, soup, etc., to help you stay hydrated throughout the day. Moreover, saline nose drops and a humidifier at night can help relieve congestion besides the medication to treat congestion decongesting agents such as Pseudoephedrine (used as a decongestant agent). However, it is best to consult your doctor before taking medicines for congestion during pregnancy.
COLD MEDICINES NOT SAFE DURING PREGNANCY
There are certain medications for colds and coughs, which you should avoid consuming during pregnancy as there are side effects that may harm you and your baby kids. We have provided the list of these medications below; for reference purposes only; you should consult your doctor before taking any decision -
1. Pain relievers like ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen
2. Over-the-counter herbal remedies
3. Nasal sprays that constraints oxymetazoline
4. Majority of decongestants
5. Supplemental vitamins which are taken without the advice of your doctor
Getting cold and coughing during pregnancy may get you worried naturally, not for yourself but for your baby's health. However, these can be avoided in the first place by taking necessary precautions and making hygiene an essential part of your daily lifestyle. However, despite being cautious if you still get a cold and cough, it is best to resort to home remedies rather than over-the-counter medication. But consult your doctor before making any decision.
1. Take Extra Care: Take extra care and caution as an expectant mother, as even minor changes in mental, physical, or emotional health can impact your baby's growth.
2. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle: To avoid catching a cold or cough during pregnancy, maintain a healthy lifestyle that strengthens the immune system and thus prevents infections.
3. Seek Expert Advice: Before seeking any medications, make sure to consult with your doctor.
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