Is Tylenol or Advil Safe To Take When Pregnant?






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One thing that is inevitable about pregnancy are the aches and pains that come along with it. Whether you are in your sixth week or your thirty-sixth week, headaches, muscle aches, sore breasts, nausea and other all around “hurts” are sure to plague you. So, what is safe to take for pain relief while pregnant? The answer can be tricky. Read on to find out the whole scoop.

what-is-safe-to-take-for-pain-relief-when-pregnant1. Avoid Taking Advil (Ibuprofen) During Pregnancy

Ibuprofen is a very common and popular over the counter pain reliever. It is sold under the brand names of Advil and Motrin, and is considered an NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug). Most doctors agree that while an occasional dose of Ibuprofen won’t harm your baby, you should steer clear of this drug during your pregnancy.


This is because Ibuprofen has been graded a “Category D” drug by the FDA, but only for the 3rd trimester. This means that there is significant evidence that taking it during the third trimester could harm your baby, but there isn’t much evidence about the other stages of pregnancy. There are several reasons that Ibuprofen has received the Category D rating for the third trimester.

First of all, it may cause a passage in the baby’s heart to close prematurely, possibly leading to heart or lung damage or even death. Taking ibuprofen or other NSAIDs in the last few weeks of pregnancy has also been linked to low amniotic fluid levels. And there’s some concern that these medications may delay or prolong labor. If you have questions about using Ibuprofen while pregnant, or you are concerned that you have already used it during your pregnancy, talk with your doctor.


2. Is Taking Tylenol (Acetaminophen) When Pregnant Safe?

If you are wondering which pain reliever IS safe to take during pregnancy, you’ve come to the right place. Acetaminophen, also known as Tylenol, has a long history of being a safe choice for pregnant women. When taken at the recommended dosage, Tylenol shows no risk of contributing to any birth defects, miscarriage, lowered IQ levels in children, or any other problems.


However, be sure not to take over the recommended dosage. Taking too much Tylenol, pregnant or not, can cause liver and/or kidney damage. Be assured that Tylenol is also safe to take while breastfeeding and only a small amount is transferred to your breast milk.

As long as you are staying within the recommended doses, there is no reason why you can’t take acetaminophen during pregnancy. In fact, it has been endorsed by the American Pregnancy Association, so you know that they feel that it is safe as well. However, if you have any questions about what is safe or not safe to take during pregnancy, please see your doctor to discuss your concerns.

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Ms. Wisniewski has over 15 years experience as a labor and delivery nurse, having also worked previously as a nurse midwife in the Philippines and India. She enjoys empowering women and providing family centered care to women from all cultural and educational backgrounds.