Can You Take Theraflu While Pregnant? (Quick Answer!)

By KidSpaceStuff •  Updated: 05/15/24 •  7 min read

When I first learned I was expecting my little bundle of joy, a myriad of questions filled my mind. One of them, surprisingly, revolved around medication.

I recall being under the weather one chilly winter evening and reaching for my trusty Theraflu, only to hesitate and wonder: “Can I take Theraflu while pregnant?”

In this guide, I’ll help you answer the question “Can I take Theraflu while pregnant?” and much more. Let’s dig in!

Can You Take Theraflu While Pregnant?

It’s best to avoid taking Theraflu and other medications while pregnant. Instead, opt for natural remedies that I’ll explore below.

Understanding Theraflu and Cold Medicines

Theraflu is a popular over-the-counter medication, often sought for cold and flu symptoms relief.

Like other medications, Theraflu consists of active ingredients tailored to combat the adverse effects of the cold and flu. The primary active ingredients include:

Theraflu During Pregnancy: What the Experts Say

Most doctors and pharmacists recommend avoiding any medication during the first trimester, the time when the baby’s organs are forming. This period is crucial and most vulnerable to any potential risks.

However, when it comes to Theraflu specifically:

How the Flu Affects Pregnant Women

Pregnancy brings about significant changes to a woman’s body, making pregnant women more susceptible to certain illnesses. During flu season, this vulnerability is notably heightened. Here’s how the flu can affect pregnant women:

  1. Weakened Immune System: Pregnancy naturally weakens the immune system, increasing the risk of catching the flu. If you start displaying flu symptoms, it’s essential to consult with a doctor immediately.
  2. Higher Risk of Complications: Pregnant women have a higher risk of developing complications from the flu, such as pneumonia. This risk can lead to premature birth or adverse effects on the developing fetus.
  3. Fever and Baby’s Health: A high fever during the first trimester can potentially be harmful to a developing baby. It’s essential to consult a healthcare provider for safe fever relief options and avoid taking any over-the-counter medication without a doctor’s advice.
  4. Breathing Difficulties: The expanding uterus can press against the lungs, making it harder for expectant mothers to breathe. Having the flu can exacerbate this, making breathing even more challenging.
  5. Influence on Milk Supply: For those who are near the end of their pregnancy or have just delivered, the flu can impact the quality and quantity of breast milk. Maintaining hydration and seeking safe alternatives for flu relief can support a healthy milk supply.

Pregnancy is a time of joy but also a period of heightened vulnerability. It’s essential to be proactive, understand potential risks, and always consult with a medical professional about the safest courses of action.

Alternative Remedies to Consider

During flu season, pregnant women are more vulnerable due to a compromised immune system, making it crucial to find safer alternatives for relief from cold and flu symptoms without relying too heavily on over-the-counter medications.

Being extra cautious about medication during pregnancy is essential, especially with the potential risks some medicines may pose to the developing fetus. But enduring the symptoms of a cold or the flu without any relief isn’t the only option. Here are some alternative remedies I, and many expectant mothers, found beneficial:

  1. Warm Salt Gargle: This age-old remedy has been passed down through generations. Not only does it help with a sore throat, but it also reduces inflammation. It’s an especially great relief during the first trimester when the baby’s development is at its peak and taking medication might pose higher risks.
  2. Steam: One of the natural remedies that work wonders for nasal congestion. Just pour boiling water into a bowl and lean over it, inhaling the steam. It helps open up a stuffy nose, making it easier to breathe. Ensure the steam isn’t too hot to avoid potential burns.
  3. Honey and Lemon: A tried-and-true combination. A spoonful of honey, with a few drops of lemon juice in warm water, can soothe a sore throat, provide relief from cough, and supply essential nutrients. Honey is also believed to boost milk supply, beneficial for both you and your baby.
  4. Rest: I cannot emphasize this enough. Rest is paramount when dealing with flu symptoms. With the additional fatigue that pregnancy brings, getting a restful sleep and taking extra naps can genuinely make a world of difference. It aids your immune system in fighting off the cold and flu more effectively.
  5. Fluids: Hydration is the cornerstone of recovery. Drinking lots of fluids, whether it’s plain water, herbal teas that your doctor recommends, or nourishing broths, ensures you’re keeping hydrated. Proper hydration also supports breast milk production and quality, ensuring your baby gets all the nutrients they need.

Ways to Prevent the Flu for Pregnant Women

Pregnancy is a period of joy and anticipation but also a time when a woman’s body undergoes significant changes, making her more susceptible to illnesses like the flu. Given the potential risks the flu poses during pregnancy, it’s crucial to adopt measures to prevent it. Here are some recommended steps pregnant women can take:

1. Get the Flu Shot

The flu vaccine is one of the most effective ways to prevent the flu. Many healthcare providers recommend the flu shot for pregnant women. It not only protects the expectant mother but also offers some protection to the baby after birth. The vaccine is generally considered safe during any trimester of pregnancy.

2. Practice Good Hygiene

3. Stay Away from Sick People

Limiting exposure to sick individuals can drastically reduce the risk of catching the flu. If you know someone is ill, it’s best to keep a safe distance. Similarly, if you’re feeling under the weather, consider staying home to prevent the spread of illness.

4. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Eating a balanced diet, getting adequate sleep, staying hydrated, and managing stress can boost your immune system, making you less susceptible to infections.

5. Disinfect Commonly Touched Surfaces

Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that are frequently touched, such as doorknobs, light switches, phones, and remote controls. The flu virus can survive on hard surfaces for up to 24 hours.

6. Limit Public Exposure During Flu Outbreaks

If there’s a known flu outbreak in your area, consider limiting unnecessary outings or visiting crowded places. If you have to go out, practice good hygiene and consider wearing a mask.

Closing Thoughts

Navigating the challenges of pregnancy requires informed decision-making, especially when it comes to managing cold and flu symptoms. While Theraflu is a trusted name in cold and flu relief, its use during pregnancy warrants careful consideration. As with all medications, what might be harmless for one individual might pose risks for another, particularly expectant mothers and their developing babies.

Always prioritize open communication with your healthcare provider when weighing the benefits and risks of any medication during pregnancy. Embrace preventive measures to reduce the chances of falling ill and consider safer alternatives when seeking relief from discomforting symptoms. Your well-being and that of your baby are paramount, and every decision you make reverberates in this incredible journey of motherhood.