Morning sickness is not the only thing that can cause you to feel unwell during your pregnancy. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) adults average 2 to 4 colds a year, so it’s likely that you will experience symptoms from this common illness at some point during your pregnancy.
Common Cold Symptoms
Symptoms of the common cold vary greatly and can include the following: low-grade fever, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sore muscles, itchy throat and eyes, a stuffy and runny nose, and coughing. While these symptoms can make you feel quite uncomfortable, they will normally pass on their own, within 1 to 2 weeks.
Is it Safe to Take Cold Medicines When Expecting a Baby?
If you’ve had colds in the past, you’ve probably treated the symptoms with an over-the-counter (OTC) cold remedy. Many of these preparations contain ingredients such as aspirin, which can lead to unexpected bleeding.
Other cold medicines contain multiple ingredients, some of which may not be safe to use during different stages of your baby’s development in the womb. The safety, and potential side effects, of many other OTC medications have not been studied in pregnant women.
For these reasons, most healthcare professionals recommend that it is best to avoid all medicines, even those that are available without a prescription, when you are pregnant.
Sometimes, symptoms of the common cold can be quite severe. If you are truly feeling unwell, and running a very high fever, or are at the risk of dehydration due to nausea and vomiting, you should consult your obstetrician or other healthcare professional. Based on your condition, including your current trimester, and the health and condition of your baby, they may recommend a cold remedy or other medication that will be safe for you and your baby.
Tips to Help You Cope with Common Cold Symptoms During Pregnancy
Whether or not your doctor recommends a medication to ease your cold symptoms, practicing good self-care while you are sick can help you to feel better as your body fights off the infection. Consider using one of the following tips to help you cope with the common cold.
Stay Hydrated. Being ill increases the body’s need for water, so be certain to drink plenty of fluids while you are sick.
Get Plenty of Rest. Our bodies also need more sleep when we are sick, so be certain to take things easy and get plenty of rest when you have a cold.
Use a vaporizer or humidifier. When the air is dry it’s easier to catch a cold, and it can make your throat itch, as well as your nose. Using a vaporizer or humidifier in your room will reduce the dryness, ease throat pain and help loosen any congestion in your nasal passages.
Listen to Your Wise Old Aunt or Grandma – Chicken Soup Probably Works. While some consider it a myth, people all over the world have been turning to chicken soup for centuries to help ease their cold symptoms. According to a 2000 research study published in the medical journal, Chest, chicken soup contains some ingredients that have mild medicinal and anti-inflammatory properties. Some of these compounds can inhibit the upper respiratory symptoms commonly experienced with colds. An earlier study published in 1978 in the same journal reports that chicken soup helps the body to break up mucus and clear it away.
Based on this research, the next time that you are suffering from cold symptoms, you might be better off turning to chicken soup for relief, rather than your regular cold medicine.